I recently returned from Hawaii, where I spent hours shopping at the Ala Moana Center near Waikiki. It is an open-air mall where you can enjoy the beautiful weather while strolling from store to store. Ala Moana has everything from chain stores like Banana Republic through to designer boutiques like Dior.
Coming from New Zealand which only has a handful of department stores, I was most interested to check out Nordstrom and Neiman Marcus. I really enjoyed being able to browse through a variety of labels under one roof, and try on all my picks in one go.
It was great being able to shop at Michael Kors, Coach and J Crew as the US prices are much cheaper. My favourite stores were Kate Spade Saturday (for cute clothing and accessories and effervescent staff) and Diane von Furstenberg (for gorgeous prints and helpful staff who pulled stock that wasn’t even on the shop floor).
What really stood out to me was the quality of the service. The sales assistants were consistently friendly and helpful, without ever being pushy.
If you need to fortify yourself for more shopping, I recommend The Pineapple Room at Macy’s (for gourmet burgers, lotus root chips and fruity drinks) and Mariposa at Neiman Marcus (for the quintessential “ladies who lunch” experience, with elegant touches like popovers with strawberry butter and chicken consommé to start).
We stayed at The Modern Honolulu in Waikiki, which was perfect for making multiple trips to Ala Moana, as it is less than a 10 minute walk. The Modern Honolulu is a chic, minimalist hotel with very well-dressed bellmen – loved the white shorts and grey cardigans!