Category Archives: Hawaii travel

Hawaii Hotel Damage Update

At least two major hotels on the western side of Hawaii’s Big Island remained closed this week after being damaged by ocean surges from the tsunami spawned by Japan’s March 11 earthquake. Some others were mopping up.

Four Seasons Resort Hualalai in Kailua-Kona: The resort will be closed until April 30 after sustaining damage from water, sand and debris that flowed onto the grounds, affecting mainly the pool areas, landscaping and a restaurant, plus 12 of the resort’s 243 guest rooms, the resort said in a statement. General Manger Robert Whitfield said there was “no significant structural damage” but that the resort’s managers  wanted to take time to “polish the property in the fashion it is known for.”

Guests with upcoming reservations were being contacted to make alternate arrangements, such as rebooking for a later date or staying at sister properties elsewhere, including the Hawaiian islands of Lanai and Maui, the resort said.

Kona Village Resort in Kailua-Kona:  The 125-bungalow resort was closed, and no reopening date had been set. “We are still going through assessments,” spokeswoman Karine Joret said. “There was pretty severe damage done to the resort. Over 20 bungalows were destroyed, as well as damage to our restaurant, gift shop, office and reception areas, bars on the beach and pools.”

King Kamehameha’s Kona Beach Hotel in Kailua-Kona: The tsunami damaged the first floor of the hotel, requiring the carpet and furniture to be removed, but it did not affect guest rooms, according to the hotel’s website. The Billfish Bar and the pool have been reopened, and the hotel plans to resume its luau Sunday. A number of retail stores have also reopened, the website said.

Hilton Waikoloa Village in Waikoloa: This resort escaped significant damage.”“We had one water-pipe issue at one of our restaurants, and the restaurant reopened Saturday,” said spokeswoman Leanne Pletcher. “We were very, very fortunate. We’re back, with business as normal.”

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Tsunami Damages 2 Big Island Hotels

Two hotels on the Big Island closed because of damage caused by the tsunami.

The Four Seasons Hualalai and Kona Village Resort, both sustained damage from the water surges.

Four Seasons officials said it has relocated its guests to other properties on Lanai, Maui and other hotels. The hotel management plans to reopen on March 21.

The waves caused damage to about 12 rooms and suites. The tsunami also dragged debris and sand onto the property, including bars and pools.

Hotel officials said the staff is not being laid off and that the workers are helping with the cleanup.

Kona Village Resort did not specify the extent of its damage.

“As the resort did sustain some damage due to the water surge, we have closed Kona Village Resort to insure that we will be ready to welcome our guests and be fully operational,” the hotel said on its website.

The King Kamehameha Hotel along the coast also sustained damage. However, the hotel did not close. The damage was limited, according to the hotel’s website.

Honolulu "Direct Connect" Hotels From Hotelmine

Honolulu

Home to the State Capitol, Honolulu is the vibrant epicenter of Hawaii.

Here you’ll find everything from historic landmarks and treasured monuments to world-class shopping and a flourishing arts and culture scene. Home to the majority of Oahu’s population, the sprawling city of Honolulu spreads throughout the southeastern shores of Oahu, from Pearl Harbor to Makapuu Point, encompassing world famous Waikiki.

Here are just a few of the many hotels in Honolulu that you will find at Hotelmine.  Don’t forget when you decided to book your guest room you will be dealing directly with the hotel and not an online travel agency.

Hotelmine…see where the world’s largest “Direct Connect” travel site can take you!

Honolulu Hotels

Grand Wailea & PGA West file for bankruptcy

The Grand Wailea Resort Hotel & Spa in Hawaii and four other luxury resorts filed for bankruptcy after lenders including Paulson & Co., one of the world’s biggest hedge funds, seized them from Morgan Stanley’s real estate funds.

The Grand Wailea, a Waldorf Astoria resort built in 1991, covers 40 acres along Maui’s southwestern shore and has 780 guest rooms at rates starting at $369 a night, according to its website. Another property in bankruptcy, The La Quinta Resort & Club PGA West in California, sits on 45 acres and has a spa, five clubhouses and nine golf courses, according to court papers.

Occupancy rates and average rates for rooms have fallen, with revenue per available room down 26 percent last year from 2007, according to court papers. Hotel guests also spent less in spas, restaurants and stores at the resorts, cutting net operating income to $56.4 million in 2010 from $153.2 million three years earlier.

Tom Costello is the CEO, Partner & Co-Founder of Groups International, a company that provides marketing, consultative services, and technology solutions to the group and leisure travel markets.  Connect with him on TwitterLinkedIn, and Facebook or contact him by email.

Grand Wailea Investors "Hand In The Keys"

Just like homeowners who fall behind on their mortgage payments sometimes “hand in the keys” and walk away, the investors who bought the Grand Wailea resort in 2007 are giving up their ownership.

The big Maui resort and seven others that were pledged for a huge loan have been taken over by the lenders, according to a report by Bloomberg News in New York.

The loan, originally for $1 billion, was coming due next month.

On Monday, Grand Wailea General Manager Matt Bailey said the change in ownership wouldn’t have any immediate effect on operations, which are under a long-term contract with Hilton.