What is the average price to take a cab or shuttle to/from the airport? Are there beach umbrellas to use on the beach? Are there decent priced restaurants within walking distance? Thanks!
Aloha! I recommend SpeediShuttle (877) 242-5777 for the airport transportion if you will not be renting a car. I do recommend visitors rent a car though if you plan to do some sight-seeing and exploring outside of the resort. If not, then SpeediShuttle is great. They go direct from HNL to Ko Olina every hour. It's pretty much direct. They stop at the main Ko Olina Resort locations: Four Seasons (lagoon 1), Disney Aulani (lagoon 1), Beach Villas (lagoon 2), Marriott Ko Olina Beach Club (lagoon 3) and it is fairly cost effective. I prefer this service over a traditional taxi or a shuttle that may not be as reputable (or clean). You can also go the UBER or LYFT route, of course. Download those apps to learn more.
Alexandra P is correct in that no freestanding beach umbrellas are allowed at Ko Olina Beaches. There are, as she mentioned, 15 shade palapas/cabanas, permanently fixed in the sand across Lagoon 2, that are available on a first come first serve basis. Get one first thing in the morning or if you hang out at the beach during the day they will open up periodically. Lagoon 2 is by far the most private and exlusive feeling beach of the four in Ko Olina, due to it having the least amount of people on it at any given time, when compared with the other three lagoons. It is also the only beach in Ko Olina with these fixed cabanas, whereas Lagoons 1 and 3 have LOTS of chairs and chaise loungers across the beach (which I don't really care much for as I think they are a big eye sore and take up way too much space), but that is how those resorts (Four Seasons, Disney and Marriott) do things. I'm sure once Atlantis is built and other resorts on either side of Beach Villas that Lagoon 2 will end up the same way. Though if you look at the lagoons from an aerial map view you can see that Lagoon 2 is actually much smaller in size (both beach and water) than Lagoon 1. Lagoon 2 is still the best though ;)
Visit the Ko Olina website or download the Ko Olina Resort app and you'll have access to all the info on resort shops and restaurants. There are quite a few to choose from. No restaurants on property at the Beach Villas or Lagoon 2. The Beach Villas Beach Bar (open 11am-9pm) adjacent the Lagoon Pool by the Beach Tower serves drinks, snacks, mac n cheese, hot dogs and ice cream. No real food/meals though. There are BBQ grills by the Lagoon Pool, too so that's a nice way to do a dinner on property and plenty of tables by the beach bar and throughout the two pool areas. NO BBQ grills are setup by Lap Pool by Ocean Tower, but Ocean Tower Guests can certainly walk right over to Lagoon Pool and grill there as well. All amenities are shared by all Guests.
As you face the ocean, walking to the left to Lagoon 3 at the Marriott Ko Olina Beach Club, there is the oceanfront dining "Longboards", a nice outdoor dining setting with large umbrellas in an open air format. They serve breakfast, lunch and dinner and have a good breakfast buffet. You can enjoy the awesome views across Lagoon 3 and Longboards is one of my personal favorites. Moderately priced. Also at Marriott you have Longhi's, an Italian restaurant located where Chuck's Steak and Seafood used to be in years gone by. The Longhi's are a family from Maui and they have restaurants in Lahaina and Wailea (on Maui) as well.
As you face the ocean in front of the Beach Villas at Lagoon 2, if you walk to the right, you will reach Disney Aulani first, then Four Seasons. Between those two properties there are 16 restaurants, bars, snack bars, shave ice stands and cafes. Lots to choose from. The Character Breakfast at Disney is cool if you have little ones that don't get freaked out by life-size Disney Characters ;)
Along the main resort road, Aliinui Drive, next to the one and only traffic light in the resort (at the time of this writing), you have Monkeypod (great service, large bar and good food and live music, probably one of the most popular restaurants in the resort), Just Tacos Mexican Grill & Cantina, Pizza Corner, Ko Olina Hawaiian BBQ (plate lunch style, like L&Ls, if you know them, Sushi Yuzu Ko Olina, as well as various shops, ice cream shop (Two Scoops), Island Vintage Coffee and Island Country Market (we call it ICM for short, a glorified ABC Store basically).
OUTSIDE of the Resort, in nearby Kapolei (which Ko Olina is in the city limits of), you have a LOT of other options for shopping, dining and entertainment. The new Ka Makana Alii Mall is an outdoor mall in Kapolei off of Kapolei Parkway, the third largest mall on Oahu as I understand, after Ala Moana Center and Pearlridge Center. There are two new movie theaters in Kapolei with reclining seats (Olino at the new mall and Regal, next to target in Kapolei Commons shopping center).
Target, Costco, Down to Earth, Walmart, Foodland, Safeway are all about a 10-15 minute drive from Ko Olina into the Kapolei area.
I don’t have advice on cab as we always rent car because we tend to take a day or two to drive around island however as for the beach umbrellas, if you are staying at KoOlina Beach Villas, they had palapa style umbrellas (first come first served). I don’t believe you are allowed to put up an umbrella at the beach lagoons. That said, we usually set down our towels and chairs on the grassy lawn as there is lots of shade and less messy than sand (grassy area is not far to water just a few more yards)
Get an answer from Beach Villas at Ko Olina staff and past guests.