Outrigger Reef vs. Outrigger Waikiki: Which Is Better?

There are a few different Outrigger resorts along the beach in Honolulu. However, two resorts stand above the rest, the Reef and Waikiki. Both of these resorts are stunning, but which one is better?

Outrigger Reef is better to stay at because it has been newly remodeled and has a more open floor plan. As a result, the Reef has a slightly classier feel and is a favorite of most tourists. The only downside to staying at the Reef is its small-sized fitness center. 

In the rest of this article, I will discuss the two resorts and what you can expect if you stay at either. So if you want to learn more about Outriggers resorts and which one you should stay at, keep reading. 

outrigger reef vs outrigger waikiki which is better

About Outrigger Reef

The Outrigger resorts are quite popular due to their excellent locations and service. However, each establishment has different things to offer. 

For example, Outrigger Reef recently underwent renovations, and it’s reported that the resort has received a stunning facelift. The changes resulted in a beautifully decorated space and a roomy feel. In addition, the Reef is known for its chill atmosphere and friendly staff

Plus, the Reef is directly next to Fort DeRussy Park. The park is a stunning beachfront park where you can stroll through the greenery, along the beach, or even have a barbeque. In addition to being close to the park, the Reef is also quite near Outrigger Waikiki. 

Additionally, with the Reef, you can book rooms with stunning views of the Pacific Ocean. The Reef’s location is also fairly central to other activities like shopping, dining, and excursions. This part of Honolulu is heavily geared toward the tourism industry. 

Benefits of Staying at Outrigger Reef

It’s no secret that Outrigger Reef is an excellent place to stay while on vacation, but what are some of the other benefits of staying there?

The pros of choosing Outrigger Reef for your vacation are listed below:

  • Fantastic location. The Reef is near the heart of Honolulu’s tourist hot spot. Additionally, there are plenty of nearby shopping and high-end restaurants for you to try during your visit. 
  • Recently renovated. The Reef is in an older building but has undergone an extreme makeover. All the rooms and interior of the resort have been updated, resulting in a stunning modern beach vibe. 
  • Great staff. All the staff is friendly and helpful, so you don’t have to worry about feeling frustrated at check-in. 
  • Close to the park. As I previously stated, the Reef is near one of the most stunning beachside parks where you and your family can easily stroll or have a picnic. 
  • Affordable. The Reef’s rates are pretty reasonable compared to many other resorts on the island. 
  • Hawaiian cultural activities. The resort puts on fun classes like hula and woodcarving for you to enjoy during your stay. 
  • Great breakfast. The Reef’s Ocean House serves a fantastic breakfast for a fair price. You can expect to find traditional breakfast foods and tropical fruit/juice. 
  • Live music. The Reef provides nightly live music from local performers at Kani Ka Pila Grille. Some of these performers are award-winning musicians and can be seen jamming out on the large outdoor stage. 

Staying at the Reef is truly a great experience. The overall aesthetic and atmosphere promote relaxation and peace. So if you want to stay in something a little more modern and located centrally to activities in Honolulu, the Reef is perfect. 

Disadvantages of Staying at Outrigger Reef 

Even though the Reef is a great resort, like any establishment, it also has drawbacks. So what exactly are the disadvantages of booking this resort for your trip?

disadvantages of staying at outrigger reef

The cons of staying at the Reef during your vacation:

  • The fitness center is small. If you’re really into working out, the Reefs gym might not be for you. The space is relatively small and has poor airflow resulting in a heavy rubber smell permeating the room from the equipment. 
  • The pool is partially shaded. Though the pool space has recently been redone and is quite stunning, it’s often in the shade. However, this isn’t too much of a problem during warm days unless you’re trying to sun yourself. 

About Outrigger Waikiki

Another fantastic housing option during your visit to Honolulu is Outrigger Waikiki. This stunning resort is known for promoting a fun beachy atmosphere. Additionally, Waikiki is home to Duke’s restaurant and often has popular live music. 

Waikiki also offers access to an exclusive club known as the Voyager 47 Club. During your stay, you can upgrade to gain a membership, allowing access to the club’s lounge rooms that overlook the ocean. Additionally, members get breakfast, appetizers, and drinks. 

There is also a spa on-site if you need a little more relaxation. Additionally, the resort has several restaurant options if you’re feeling hungry. Plus, it’s a short walk from many other dining experiences and its sister resort, the Reef. 

Benefits of Staying at Outrigger Waikiki

Waikiki is one of the best resorts lining the beach in Honolulu. It has a lot to offer in terms of entertainment and luxury. So what are all the benefits of choosing Outrigger Waikiki for your stay?

The pros of staying at Outrigger Waikiki:

  • Beach view rooms. Many of the resort’s rooms face the ocean, so you can have a great view of the Pacific during your stay. 
  • A great pool. Waikiki’s pool is in full sun throughout the day, and you can see the ocean from its location. 
  • Many restaurants to choose from. This resort is home to several restaurants, including one of the most popular on the island, Duke’s. 
  • Hawaiian cultural activities. You can choose from several activities like lei making and surf lessons.
  • Live music. Most nights, you can find live bands playing somewhere on the premises. Typically at one of the restaurants. 
  • Club Lounge. If you want a more high-end experience, you can pay to join their exclusive club for extra privileges and experiences. 
  • Has a spa. This Honolulu day spa is basic but offers massages and several other relaxing spa treatments. If you want to explore some other massage and day spas on the island, you can check out my other article on the topic.

As you can see, there are quite a few advantages to staying at this beautiful beachfront resort. 

Disadvantages of Staying at Outrigger Waikiki

Now that you understand the draws of staying at Waikiki, it’s time to discuss some disadvantages. 

disadvantages of staying at outrigger waikiki

The cons of staying at Outrigger Waikiki:

  • It’s pretty noisy. Most guests report the beach and inside of the resort to be very loud day and night. So if you’re a light sleeper or hoping for some quiet, this can be a problem. 
  • More expensive. Staying at this resort is slightly more expensive than staying at the Reef. 

Outrigger Reef vs. Outrigger Waikiki: Which Is Better?

In all honesty, you can’t go wrong with either resort. Both have truly unique things about them and a few cons. Which resort you will enjoy more depends heavily on your vacation goals. The Reef is better if you want a high-end peaceful vacation, and Waikiki is best if you enjoy more excitement

However, that being said, I think Outrigger Reef is the clear winner with the new renovations. The resort is quieter, more comfortable, and aesthetically pleasing. Additionally, because of the proximity to Waikiki, you can always walk over to enjoy their restaurants and live music. 

Key Takeaways: Outrigger Reef vs. Outrigger Waikiki

Outrigger Reef is a favorite vacation spot, even before all the fancy new changes. But now, with all the new renovations, the resort has only increased in popularity. Those who have vacationed there have nothing but great things to say about the resort besides the small fitness center.