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SKY Waikiki Rises to the Top

As in pretty much literally to the top of Waikiki, with the Top of Waikiki revolving restaurant — Hawaii’s only one — perched right above it just one story higher, in what is surely the most unique and extravagant nightclub I myself have EVER seen this side of Las Vegas. I will say this first and foremost: you will be BLOWN AWAY at how incredible this nightclub’s design, layout, execution, and — pun intended — above all, LOCATION is.

Sky Waikki Rooftop Bistro • Lounge • Nightclub occupies 7,000 square feet of rooftop space on the 19th floor of the Waikiki Business Plaza, with the Top of Waikiki revolving restaurant literally serving as part of its roof. There are two main areas, including an interior dance hall and full-service bar that isn’t warehouse huge, but having just enough size to fit a good crowd yet still remain intimate.

The other main area of course being the rooftop outer deck that wraps around the Ewa and Makai side of the club, with the Makai side made-up of a brand new deck that juts out and over Waikiki Business Plaza, where you look straight up and down Kalakaua Avenue. If you’ve ever been to the Top of Waikiki, it’s pretty much the same breathtaking view of the Waikiki skyline, from the foot of Daimond Head, all the way to the Ewa Plains. The outside deck and interior dance hall being split in two levels connected via short staircases.

There’s also an enclosed, very hip and even more intimate VIP room in the center that’s accessible from both inside and out.

The also new and very clean restrooms aren’t inside the club, but just outside, adjacent to the elevator lobby area.

While I didn’t get the technical specs of the audio/video system, it’s as good as you’ll find in any club, period. Bass like nobody’s business both inside and outside on the deck, with excellent stereophonic separation. Inside the dance hall, there’s a wall-sized video screen comprised “Jumbotron” style of multiple large HDTVs tiled and synced together, projecting “splash” video of scenic views around Hawaii, including beaches and mountain scenes.

That said, interestingly and incredibly, this club really has a “Hawaii vibe” going on, not just in the contemporary design, but also most importantly by the PEOPLE that work there, being it’s a nice mixture of locals and mainland transplants, and all VERY ATTRACTIVE, I might add. Same goes for the clientele, having a very nice mixture in both age and ethnicity.

Following are photos I shot from Friday night’s gala private VIP grand opening celebration, as well as Saturday night’s continued festivities of SKY Waikiki. Enjoy!


Sky Waikiki owner Alika Mau and Pomai Souza


Sky Waikiki PR Team Mitchell and Larry Fink


Larry Fink and Pomai Souza


Top of Waikiki/Sky Waikiki Executive Chef Lance Kosaka and Pomai Souza


Melissa Chang and Pomai Souza


Hawaii News Now Sunrise Anchor Grace Lee and Fresh Box Chef Wil Chen


Rob Rose and Pomai Souza


John Berger, Entertainment Columnist for the Honolulu Star Advertiser and Pomai Souza


Comfy sofas line the 17th floor Ewa-facing side deck from end-to-end


Tempura Chicken and Furikake Mac’ Salad Sliders


Tempura Chicken and Furikake Mac’ Salad Sliders


Crab Crostini


Spicy Oyster Shooters


Spicy Oyster Shooters


Spicy Ahi Pizza


Duck Confit Gyoza


Butterfish with Shiitake Aioli


Festive pupu (name TBD)


Popcorn pupu (name TBD)


Poke pupu (name TBD)

Exotic potato salad (name TBD)


SKY Waikiki’s prepared-to-order Taco Bar


Pizza 1 (name TBD)


Pizza 2 (name TBD)


Pizza 3 (name TBD)


Pizza 4 (name TBD)


SKY Waikiki’s thin-crust Pizza slices


Rack of Lamb “Lollipops”


Assorted Cupcakes


Cream Puffs


Key Lime Pie Shooters


Cream Puffs


Cream Puffs


Mousse


Haute French Toast with Vanilla Bean Ice Cream


Pink cocktail  (name TBD)



Pink and orange cocktails (name TBD)


Sandy Cocktail (name TBD)


Stevie Brock and Mikalah Gordon immediately following the Hawaiian blessing ceremony on Friday’s evening’s VIP grand opening


Victoria Justice & boyfriend Pierson Fode


Renee Bragh of Extra interviews DJ Brody Jenner on Friday Night on the Sky Waikiki patio deck, with Sheraton Waikiki in the background (he spins on Saturday night with DJ Lucien)


Celebrity MCs Brody Jenner & Devin Lucien on the ones and twos on Saturday Night


Celebrity MCs Brody Jenner & Devin Lucien on the ones and twos on Saturday Night


Spotlights shine upon a moonlit Hawaiian night high above at Sky Waikiki


VIP Room


A wall-sized 16 HDTV panel “Jumbotron” TV showcases the mood of the day, whether it be scenic videos of Hawaii’s beautiful mountains and oceans, to live footage of the concert at hand… STUNNING VISUALS!


Kumu Hula Michael Pili Pang (farthest to the right) and his Halau Hula Ka No’eau (Punahou, Oahu), who performed the ancient Hawaiian chant (Kahiko) and Blessings Ceremony for Sky Waikiki on Friday, August 28, 2015

Chef Eberhard “Hardy” Kintscher of Michel’s at the Colony Surf with his lovely girlfriend


The beautiful people (continued to next set of photos)

Huge mahalos to Larry Fink, along with business partner Mitchell Fink for personally inviting Yours Truly,  c/o The Tasty Island to attend this AWESOME event! Also huge mahalos to all the awesome staff for the hard work and first class service you folks provided. You all ROCK! Here’s to great success of Sky Waikiki, making the most recognized tourism destination in the world that much more a hot spot among all hot spots!

8 thoughts on “SKY Waikiki Rises to the Top

  • August 29, 2015 at 2:33 pm
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    Pomai,

    Not the place to be next week with hurricanes and 2-4 inches of rain.

    Reply
    • August 29, 2015 at 3:30 pm
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      Ken,

      Actually, it would be an interesting vantage point!

      Reply
  • August 29, 2015 at 4:57 pm
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    Pomai,
     
     
    Next door Ohana Beachcomber Hotel, now the Holiday Inn Beachcomber, was my most favorite hotel to stay at every year (30 years) when we visited Oahu and upper floors have pretty much the same view as Sky Bar which is not much on the beach unless you are looking east to Kuhio Beach. We loved it for the central location and Ohana atmosphere.  
     
    According to the latest forecast track and readings Cat-4 Hurricane Ignacio will drop down to a CAT-1 hurricane and pass Oahu 181 miles to the north with tropical force storm winds extending out from the center 140 miles. It will be a 2-4 inches of rain and large surf event for Oahu on the east and southeast sides.
     
    As far as CAT-5 Hurricane Jimena is concerned it will drop down to a CAT-4 hurricane and according to recent satellite photos it is already turning ever so slightly to the north far sooner than Ignacio did so there is a good chance it also will pass the islands to the north and create just a rain and surf event for the islands. Tropical storm force winds extend only 145 miles from the center.
     
    I would not sit outside in the rain to look at the surf but go upstairs to Top of Waikiki Restaurant to the totally enclosed restaurant bar or another totally enclosed beach front restaurant bar. 2-4 inches of rain with wind can get really messy. Does Sky Bar have glass rolling doors they can wall off the bar at the overhang to protect patrons from the weather elements???

    Reply
    • August 31, 2015 at 1:15 am
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      Ken,

      Yup, so far it looks like we’ve dodged yet another bullet (make that two more).

      Yeah, the view from Top of Waikiki (and Sky Bar just below it) can’t see much of the beach itself, however  you can get glimpses of the ocean line between the hotels. It’s a more spectacular view at night (I’ll add photos later) of the city skyline lights.

      It’s actually really cool hanging out on the open deck right below Top of Waikiki, provided the weather is totally calm with minimal wind, as it was last night when I returned. Beautiful clear, moonlit night, with spot lights beaming up into the full moon lit sky. Couldn’t have been a better grand opening weekend, weather-wise for them. Oh, and they have VERY comfy seating all around the deck, with sofas that you literally SINK into. Romantic, actually, if you know what I mean. He he.

      No glass doors to wall off the deck at Sky Bar, while the deck railing itself is made up of very thick (plexi?) reinforced glass, IIRC, about 5 feet in height. While I didn’t ask, I assume anytime the weather is anything less than ideal, that outside deck will be off limits. It’s a REALLY interesting layout. You should go check it out next time you’re in Waikiki at night.

      I’m curious how much vibration can be felt/heard through the Top of Waikiki’s disc-shaped structure during really high winds, and what category hurricane those windows are designed to withstand. I’m guessing no more than a CAT-2. I’ll ask someone who works there next time.

      Reply
      • August 31, 2015 at 9:59 am
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        Top of Waikiki Restaurant is one of my most favorite restaurants as I take visitors there and treat them to dinner and city lights show.

        Yes we will dodge a bullet with hurricane Ignacio and current satellite photos show hurricane Jimenez turning to the north so that is a second bullet dodged and the new hurricane forming is forecast to go up near California.

        Reply
  • August 30, 2015 at 7:19 am
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    What is a butterfish licker?

    Reply
    • August 30, 2015 at 9:19 am
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      h, actually that’s just a really “punny” nicname I gave that butterfish dish. “Butterfish” is the same as Black Cod, given that name because of its buttery-tender texture. The most popular way it’s prepared here is a Japanese style called Misoyaki Butterfish, which I LOVE!

      I don’t know the actual names of each dish, but will get it directly from Lance Kosaka, their Executive Chef (via Top of Waikiki), when I see him again. The only dishes I actually tried (because I don’t like stuffing myself at social events) was the Spicy Ahi Pizza, the Butterfish and the Rack of Lamb, all ofwhich were STELLAR!

      Reply
  • August 30, 2015 at 11:15 am
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    Ah, makes sense. Butterfish licker sounded like some term you’d see on Urban Dictionary!

    Be safe with the weather headed your way!

    Reply

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