This Courtyard Marriott–managed hotel lives up to its premium setting in front of King Kamehameha’s royal compound on Kailua Bay. Rooms boast not only flatscreen TVs, updated bathrooms, and modern furnishings but also a sense of history and place. Subtle patterns in the stylish guest rooms reflect lava, native plants, and traditional tattoo designs, while colors suggest sand, coffee, and rainforest ferns. The high-ceilinged, bright lobby is home to a gallery of royal portraits and Hawaiian cultural scenes by the late Herb Kawainui Kane. More recently, the hotel restored its two tennis courts and pro shop, added a yoga studio, and expanded the offerings at Honu’s on the Beach, its popular indoor/outdoor restaurant.

Note: In early October, this is Ironman central, full of buff bodies and international triathletes, all abuzz about the world championship that starts and ends just outside the hotel’s front door.