Page 15 - MidWeek - May 31, 2023
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There will also be two new restaurants in the lobby, two pools, a fitness center, indoor and outdoor onsen (Japanese-style soaking tubs), saunas and a steam room.
A rendering of the Renaissance Honolulu Hotel & Spa, which is set to open early next year. IMAGE COURTESY RENAISSANCE HONOLULU HOTEL & SPA
“There are very few hotels outside of Waikīkī and I think people are just forced to go to Waikīkī because that’s what’s available,” Sanders says. “Because of its location, (Renaissance Honolulu) will defi- nitely tap into Hawai‘i Convention Center business, and it will help to start to alleviate
traffic congestion in Waikīkī.” Renaissance is just a few blocks away
from the Highgate-managed Pagoda Hotel, which Sanders says is also getting a con- temporary refresh — but will remain true to its kama‘aina-friendly roots.
MAY 31, 2023 MIDWEEK 15
 Things Are Looking Up For Hotel Industry Veteran
     Renaissance Honolulu Hotel & Spa is set to open early next year in the SKY Ala Moana building on Kapi‘olani Boulevard, across from Ala Moana Shopping Center.
 “(This project) is super unique because it will be our first condo hotel,” Sanders says. “It’s going to be a five-star luxury product in everything from the size of the room to the quality of the construction.
“The hotel itself will not start until the 15th floor, so when you arrive, you’ll come into the lobby to check in and then go straight to the 15th floor where the first rooms are. And all of the rooms have amaz- ing ocean views all the way up to the 39th floor.”
       Slated to open early next year is AC Honolulu by Marriott — the second hotel in the downtown district, lo- cated at 111 Bishop St., in the former Remington College building.
“Not only are we open-
ing or reimagining so
many of our assets that we
have in Hawai‘i ... we also
have formed a partnership
with a company called
TableOne,” Sanders says.
“It’s really led by (celebri-
ty chef) Michael Mina and
his group and they will be opening five new restaurants for us in our hotels.”
that on June 1 we will open La Bettola, which is an Italian concept from chef (Tsu- tomu) Ochiai out of Tokyo,” Sanders says. “(This will be) his first restaurant outside of Japan at our ‘Alohilani Resort Waikīkī Beach.”
The hotel will feature about 112 rooms and an AC Kitchen — Marriott’s mod- ern take on a café concept — as well as banquet space and a new speakeasy.
A rendering of the AC Honolulu by Marriott, which is under construction in downtown Honolulu. IMAGE COURTESY AC HONOLULU BY MARRIOTT
downtown area emerge in a way that’s going to be more positive than in the past,” Sanders says. “I think we were on that trajectory be- fore the pandemic and then during the pandemic things
Final details are being ironed out but Sanders says guests can expect everything from Japanese cuisine to dishes inspired by the Mediterranean and Southern California.
the resort as well.
Initial reports indicated La Bettola would open in SKY Waikīkī — but Sanders con- firms Ochiai will join another chef from Japan at ‘Alohilani — Iron Chef Masaha- ru Morimoto, whose signature Morimoto Asia Waikīkī and more casual Momosan by Morimoto are at
 Parking will be 100% va- let; the hotel has a partnership with a company that operates a nearby parking garage.
got worse for everyone and we’re starting on that journey again.”
Mina won the Michelin star for his epon- ymous restaurant in San Francisco. That eat- ery closed in 2021, but Mina operates more than 40 other restaurants around the world.
The Spaghetti ai Ricci is one of the featured dishes at La Bettola. PHOTOS COURTESY LA BETTOLA WAIKĪKĪ
“I think we’re on the verge of really starting to see the
He hopes the property will add to the synergy of the dis- trict and drive foot traffic to surrounding businesses.
“And we are super excited to announce
 Back in Waikīkī, Sanders says, the Waikīkī Pearl on Nahua Street and the Ambassador Waikīkī, near the intersec- tion of Kūhiō and Kalākaua avenues, are undergoing separate renovations valued at $40 million and $75 million, respectively.
new personalities and names that tie into the surrounding community.
The Pearl is slated to reopen next year; while Ambassador reopens in September. “We’ll re-emerge as one of the coolest
Meanwhile, on Maui, renovation of the bungalows at Royal Lahaina Resort & Bungalows continues. Sanders says guests can also expect a new lobby restaurant, and upgraded pools and beach bar by year’s end.
lifestyle hotels in the market. We’re super excited about that,” Sanders says, adding that the properties will have completely
Also on Maui, Makai Sunset Inn in La- haina, which is closed for a full renovation, will re-open at the end of June, and in Oc- tober will be re-branded as Lei Lei House.
 Renovations at the Royal Lahaina Resort & Bungalows on Maui continue. The new look is scheduled to be completed by the year’s end. PHOTO COURTESY ROYAL LAHAINA RESORT & BUNGALOWS

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