Written by guest blogger Hotel Slippers
Resembling a lustrous pale pink pearl, encircled in a creamy-white shell, The Royal Hawaiian Hotel sits regally on the golden sands of Waikiki Beach. The land, once the playground of Hawaiian Royalty, was the summer palace of Queen Kaahumanu. The 15-acre coconut grove parcel of land was purchased as a site for the Royal Hawaiian Hotel, where in 1925 Matson Navigation Company spent four million dollars to build the original main building, much to the disappointment of local native Hawaiians. The New York architectural firm of Warren and Wetmore, hired to design the building, played a major role in the construction of the hotel. The use of 9,000 gallons of paint, stain and lacquer were required in the largest building project of its time in the Pacific.
Known as “The Pink Palace”, the hotel opened its doors February 1, 1927, with 1,200 people attending a black-tie dinner. Arthur Benaglia, the first manager, spent eighteen years at its helm establishing a reputation for excellent service. Thus, with the hotel sitting on Royal land among coconut trees ( a symbol of wealth and power in old Hawaii), it continues to host Heads of State, Hollywood stars and visitors from all over the world to enjoy its legacy of outstanding service.
My entrance into the Spanish-Moorish designed palace began with a beautiful orchid lei greeting (Kukui nut leis for men), bags whisked away and an escort to guide me up the wide stairway into the main lobby. As I approached the check-in desk a staff member quickly, yet gently, pulled my chair out as I took a seat and began the most pleasant check-in I have ever experienced…