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OUTRIGGER Reef Waikiki Beach Resort celebrates $85m. transformation highlighting Monkeypod Kitchen by Merriman

OUTRIGGER Hospitality Group
Sara Hill, CEO of Handcrafted Restaurants and Jeff Wagoner, President and CEO of Outrigger Hospitality Group.

The contemporary beachfront retreat now boasts an award-winning restaurant with postcard-perfect Diamond Head views.

HONOLULU – Barefoot luxury, Hawaiian music and culture, plus now ‘Merrimaking’ are all found at the flagship OUTRIGGER Reef Waikiki Beach Resort – which recently commemorated the official Grand Opening of its signature beachfront restaurant, Monkeypod Kitchen by Merriman – led by culinary pioneer Peter Merriman.

Located directly on the golden sands of world-famous Waikīkī Beach, the contemporary design of OUTRIGGER Reef Waikiki Beach Resort is a beachfront retreat rooted in Hawaiian music and culture with carefully curated art exhibits, upscale residential-style rooms and suites, chic poolside experiences, and fully-reimagined Kani Ka Pila Grille and Cyril Pahinui Stage.


Monkeypod Kitchen, Interior.

The expansive resort grounds include three distinct wings: the Ocean Tower, the Pacific Tower, and the reimagined Diamond Head Tower – a five-story oceanfront building that has been converted into 23 brand-new, spacious rooms/deluxe suites, including the opulent Coral Reef Penthouse Suite. It also features the Waiola Wellness Wing, the enhanced Voyager 47 Club Lounge, the new Coral Kids Club, and a state-of-the-art fitness center.

Monkeypod Kitchen by Merriman is a brand-new vibrant, 12,000 sq. foot restaurant at the base of the Diamond Head Tower, perched on the golden sands of Waikīkī with sweeping ocean views. Equally casual and festive – the modern, chef-driven concept is founded on a passion for the art of craft. Each item on the menu demonstrates a commitment to high-quality local fare, creative preparations, and impeccable execution.

“From the architectural design of the space to the carefully curated ingredients on the menu – our team was intentional about creating a place that is both casual and festive while using locally sourced, renewable, and sustainable products at every opportunity,” said Sara Hill, CEO of Handcrafted Restaurants.

The Monkeypod Kitchen menu highlights Hawai‘i’s bounty with socially conscious ingredients and distinctive pairings of upmarket items with upcountry favorites. Authenticity is a hallmark of the dining experience at Monkeypod Kitchen – enabling guests to connect deeply to the islands through food, drink, and live music.

“The exquisite transformation of OUTRIGGER Reef Waikiki Beach Resort underscores our unwavering commitment to creating spaces where culture, adventure, and relaxation intertwine seamlessly,” said Jeff Wagoner, president and CEO of OUTRIGGER Hospitality Group. “Monkeypod Kitchen by Merriman is the perfect complement for this iconic beachfront retreat, honoring a meaningful sense of place and enabling our guests to connect deeply to the islands through craft food, drink, and live music.”


OUTRIGGER Cares Check Presentation.

Approximately 500 VIP guests, including celebrities, key executives, partners, musicians, and beloved community members, gathered at OUTRIGGER Reef Waikiki Beach Resort for the official Grand Opening of Monkeypod Kitchen by Merriman, which also kicked off the annual Travel Weekly Leadership Forum. In addition to Monkeypod Kitchen by Merriman and Travel Weekly, event partners included: Accel, Blue Hawaiian, Kona Brewing Co, Kualoa Ranch, NMG Network, The Orchid Lei Company, PATH bottled water, and Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits of Hawai‘i.

The evening’s beneficiary OUTRIGGERCares Foundation, a 501c3 that since the Maui fires last August has been focused on providing grants and support to impacted OUTRIGGER hosts. Nick Lachey – lead singer of the multi-platinum-selling band 98 Degrees as well as television personality and host – helped to present a $5,000 check to the Outrigger Cares Foundation.

Monkeypod Kitchen by Merriman at Outrigger  Reef Waikiki Beach Resort welcomes guests daily from 7 am to 11 pm, with daily happy hour from 3:30 to 5 pm.

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Vicky is the co-founder of TravelDailyNews Media Network where she is the Editor-in Chief. She is also responsible for the daily operation and the financial policy. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Tourism Business Administration from the Technical University of Athens and a Master in Business Administration (MBA) from the University of Wales.

She has many years of both academic and industrial experience within the travel industry. She has written/edited numerous articles in various tourism magazines.