Oahu’s once-sleepy town of Kapolei, about 20 miles west of Honolulu, is enjoying a growth spurt in resorts that could turn it into a rival of the popular Waikiki Beach.
The Ko Olina coastline, home of Kapolei, already has a Four Seasons resort and Disney’s Aulani.
Now Atlantis, a name associated with water-themed resorts in the Bahamas and in Dubai, is in the “early planning stages” east of the Aulani, a news release says.
Plans call for 800 guest rooms and suites as well as 524 residences on the 26-acre resort. The Oahu property will feature an Aquaventure water park and an aquarium.
The resort site isn’t new. The Ihilani Resort and Spa opened in 1993 near the western end of Interstate H-1. The hotel became a JW Marriott in 1999 and a Four Seasons in 2016. Disney’s Aulani opened in 2011.
Aside from the luxury resorts, you’ll find budget-minded options in West Oahu. In the fall, the Hampton Inn & Suites Kapolei became the brand’s first location in Hawaii. Rooms starting at around $200 a night may seem high for this chain hotel, but that price is hundreds of dollars less than many of Waikiki lodgings.
Other pluses: Rooms are brand-new, and breakfast is included in the price. Aside from places to stay, West Oahu also offers attractions that visitors won’t find in Waikiki.
Naked Cow Dairy Farm and Creamery, opened in 2007, welcomes guests to its location in Waianae, about 13 miles up the coast from Kapolei. The dairy farm offers tours starting at $7 for kids and $10 for adults. To make a day of it, consider taking a cheese-making class.