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Solo Diner in Honolulu - Reservations Required?

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I am going to be in Waikiki this weekend, will need to do dinner a couple of nights. From what I have been reading, they are recommending reservations for everyone all the time. Is this really necessary if you are a solo diner, or can they usually squeeze you into the bar. I am not usually one for deciding ahead of time where I want to eat - should I just plan on the hole in the wall restaurant? (that may not be a bad thing...)

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  1. If you want to dine at Roy's, Nobu's, Azure, La Mer, or another high end restaurant reservations are a good idea, but you can probably be seated at the bar. For other restaurants you should be fine. Are you planning to stay in Waikiki or in areas around like Ala Moana, Kapahulu, Kaimuki etc?

    1 Reply
    1. re: KaimukiMan

      Not 100% sure yet. I know I will have a car and will be spending at least part of one day on the north side of the island. I am thinking I will be back by dinner time however. I will have a car - don;'t know if that is a help or a hindrance in this case though.

    2. Depends on where you want to go. I saw people getting turned away at Nanzan GiroGiro and Sushi Izakaya Gaku because they were fully booked (and they take reservations for the bar area). And I don't believe that Chef Mavro even has a bar you can dine at--I didn't see one there (happen to be wrong about that).

      1. ... cheaper too....:)

        1. My rec for solo diner is to relax and walk around until hunger strikes you. Almost all the restaurants -even the high end ones have bar seating where you can dine and finding an empty seat usually not a problem, and even if full-wait not long. My faves are Nobu, Roy's, BLT (in the Trump hotel), Top of Waikiki, Cheesecake factory-for their local specialties, and Hy's Steakhouse. Bar seating usually more enjoyable as people are always friendly in Hawaii!

          2 Replies
          1. re: UES Mayor

            Thanks. That is my usual procedure. I just read so much about reservations in Honolulu that I was becoming a bit worried. Are there a number of smaller hole in the wall restaurants in the area? I can almost always find one of those that isnt too long a wait and has good food.

            1. re: cloudship

              True "hole in the wall" restaurants are few and far between if you stay in the Waikiki area. Move into the surrounding neighborhoods and your options open up and prices drop.