Visit: 23 Aug 2012
The Crowne Plaza, originally the Hanalei Hotel, is host to Islands Restaurant and Islands Sushi and Pupu Bar.
The hotel is currently part of the the Crowne Plaza chain, and thus is formally called the Crowne Plaza San Diego. Before becoming a Crowne Plaza hotel, it was a Red Lion hotel, and before that it was a Best Western. The sign for the Hanalei used to be a fantastic example of Googie signage, but tragically, it was replaced with an exceedingly bland sign when "updated" by Best Western. The "Hanalei" name was dropped when it became the Crowne Plaza in 2007.
The Crowne Plaza has been able to retain a little bit of its Polynesian feel, including tikis salvaged from Steve Crane's Luau in Beverly Hills. It's a large hotel, and the remaining tiki touches are more scattered than immersive.
In late 2006, the Islands Restaurant was gutted, and the amount of tiki to be found here is sadly dwindling.
*This site was a host of the ever-growing Tiki Oasis event (2006-2019) before it moved and was held at San Diego's Paradise Point (2020) and later re-located to San Diego's Town and Country in 2021. From 2001 to 2005 Tiki Oasis was held at the Caliente Tropics in Palm Springs.
**NOTE: In the beginning of the pandemic the hotel was contracted by the city to house homeless Covid victims and this site appears to be temporarily, if not permanently closed since @2020 to the public. Fences and security have been put up and those not registered to stay here are turned away.