Mahana Update
April 2017
Aloha Fellow Mahana Owners,

You may have already noticed the demolition underway at the Lahaina Cannery Mall.  The plan is to spend $18 million in renovations, and work to double the size of the Safeway will begin in June.  Just down the street at Whalers Village, the old Whale Museum (which was closed in 2015) will be replaced by The Whale Center of Hawaii  with doors set to open June 1st.  No wonder Lahaina was voted #1 City/Town in Hawaii Magazine's Best of the Best issue.  And not to limit ourselves to just one city ... ladies Hawaii is the best state in the country for women to live and work according to new research by MoveHub.

I have an update for you on something I shared in my February update about Disney/ABC coming to Hawaii to produce a new TV series "Marvel's Inhumans".  Yes, the series is still set to premiere later this fall ... but that's not all.  It'd be pretty hard to out-do 2016 for productions in Maui: 56 commercials shot here, 4 reality-based shows, 2 feature films, one TV pilot and 16 print campaign shoots.   In the pipeline now are: 20th Century Fox TV action-comedy series "The 808", Syfy channel's zombie-theme feature film "Dead Season 2" confirmed for this summer, You Tube Red's comedy series "Surf Break Hotel" late 2017, Warner Brothers' horror/thriller feature "Ashtray" late 2017, Independent film "Found in Maui" summer, two Paramount feature films, a Netflix drama series, and ABC may bring back a reboot of Tom Selleck's show "Magnum, P.I." focusing on his daughter.

And it looks like the long-delayed $354.5 million redevelopment of the Makena Resort will start construction next year.  The final environmental assessment said it will include a total of 158 units, a resort-oriented commercial village, 27,300 sf of retail/commercial space, 405 onsite parking spaces, redevelopment of the Makena Golf & Beach Club, and the old Maui Prince Hotel redeveloped into luxury apartment units.
Nationally, housing shortages are prompting existing homes to sell a lot faster this year. According to the National Association of Realtors home sales are at the highest pace in more than a decade.  CoreLogic Home Price Index is projecting an additional 5% rise in home prices nationally over the next 12 months.

Single-family home sales on Maui surged 60% last month to 101 from 63 in March 2016.  The median sales price also rose during the same time period to $769,000.  Median condominium prices dropped 16% to $390,000 from $465,000 during March last year ... but the number of condos sold increased 15% to 130.

Here in Hawaii residential sales aren't the only ones strong -  golf courses  are big too!  In the past 3 years alone, 11 golf courses in Hawaii have changed hands, and most of them are in some phase of upgrading their courses.  All but one, were purchased by Asian investors. While Japan once dominated Hawaii's golf market, China and South Korea are making gains.  Besides residential and golf course sales ... there are the  Resort Hotel  sales.  The Westin Maui Resort & Spa Kaanapali, one of the largest hotels on Maui, just sold their leasehold interest (not including the land the resort is on) for $317 million.  The joint venture purchase by Trinity Investments now joins their others including The Ritz-Carlton Kapalua.   They plan to significantly upgrade the hotel guest rooms, public areas, and food/beverage areas.  Trinity is also involved in the redevelopment of the Makena Resort.

Now l et's take a look at The Mahana :


Figures from Realtors Association of Maui
Hawaii hotels had a great March.  Statewide occupancy for the month was 80.2% and the average daily room rate was $265.  But the big numbers were here on Maui.  Hotel occupancy was 82.7% and the average daily room rate was $364.23.  While it's nice so many tourists came to visit, the Hawaii Convention Center is preparing for 2 of what they feel may be the largest events for the year.  Comic Con is expected to bring in 12,000 attendees July 28-30.  The larger Amazing Hawaii Comic Con should bring in 25,000 August 25-27.   That even will include guests like William Shatner (Capt. James Kirk - Star Trek), Kevin Eastman (co-creator of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles), and Jason Fabok (the artist for comics including Batman, Suicide Squad and Justice League).

The Hawaii Tourism Authority has plans to attract high-spending visitors from Japan and the U.S. East with new marketing campaigns.  The Japan market is experiencing a strengthening yen against the dollar.  New Hawaiian Airlines routes between Haneda and Kona launched in December and new routes to Kauai and Maui are expected within the next few years, as infrastructure improvements are needed to accommodate the larger planes.  Already Japan has posted an increase in arrivals of 5.8% from February last year.  As far as the U.S. visitors go, a study shows that 90% of those that have never been to Hawaii are between the ages of 25 - 35, and most live in New York.  So the lure of that marketing campaign will focus on "cuisine".

More good travel news for us: The number of visitors to Hawaii by cruise ships have nearly tripled based on year-to-year comparisons for February.  And three Hawaii airports ranked in the top 10 for the whole country for on-time arrivals.  Only Charlotte, North Carolina had a higher on-time arrival at 84.8%, followed by Kona on the Big Island with 83.2%, Kahului airport here on Maui with 82.2%, and Honolulu at 81.6% on-time arrivals.
Interest rates have fallen to their lowest average since November 2016. Freddie Mac placed the 30-year mortgage rate at 3.97%. With the Feds just having raised their interest rates, this seemed a little unexpected so I turned to  Dean Rathbun  of  Avis Mortgage .  Dean has explained that when the Fed raises its federal funds rate it becomes pricier for banks to borrow money - which usually leads to higher borrowing rates for consumers. Mortgage rates tend to coincide more with the 10-year Treasury note.  Lately investors have been buying them up, and the higher demand has been sending mortgage rates lower.  If you're considering buying a property you should lock in these low rates.  We could see rates around 4.5% by the end of the year.
I always talk about Solar  being so important in Hawaii ... and it is. But today I want to focus on something a little different.  I want to tell you about some interesting moves Hawaii is making in the "automobile" foray.  First Hawaii Gov. David Ige went to San Francisco to pitch two tech companies on the idea of testing their self-driving cars in the islands.  The governor met with Google and Nvidia to convince them that Hawaii has advantages for testing and developing autonomous vehicles that other states don't.  Hawaii can create an environment that allows the companies to test the vehicles in a safe way and learn much more quickly.  Look out BMW, Volvo, and Tesla ... we're coming for you.

vehicle chargingAnd speaking of cars, at the recent Maui Energy Conference, Hawaiian Electric Co. said they are working on a plan to get more electric vehicle charging stations built at workplaces and condominium buildings.  Hawaii recently topped the 5,000 mark for electric vehicles (EV) registered in Hawaii.  We're only second in the nation after California in per capita EV registrations.
4/25-30: Napili Kai Golden Anniversary Week activities
4/29: 25th Annual East Maui Taro Festival   Hana Ball Park
5/01: 3rd Annual Lei Day Festival  Bailey House Wailuku schedule
5/5-7: Annual St. Joseph's Feast  information
5/06: 38th Annual Women's Na Holo Wahine 5k run  details
5/06: 3rd Annual Evening In The Gardens Maui Nui Botanical  tickets
5/12-14: Mele Mei Maui   Lahaina Banyan Tree
5/13: 39th Annual Maui Charity Walk   info
5/15-21: Kapalua Restaurant Week  yum yum
5/26: Pint Night For The Birds  Maui Brewing Co.  details
Maui Classical Music Festival   tickets
5/05: From Paris to Vienna
5/08: Romantic Treasures
5/10: Community Concert
5/12: Festival Finale

Maui OnStage    Iao Theater   tickets
4/28-5/14: A Few Good Men
5/20-21:  West Side Story Concert  Maui Chamber Orchestra
7/14-8/6: 9 to 5 The Musical

Maui Theater   Monday, Tuesday, Thursday Friday tickets  
'Ulalena           Hawaiian Show 5pm
Burn'n Love    Relive Elvis in Hawaii Concert 7:30pm

Pioneer Inn Lahaina   show reservations (303) 507-0987 
"An Evening with Mark Twain"    5/07
"An Evening with Albert Einstein" 5/21
2 Shows on the Following Dates : 4/28, 4/30
"The Old Man and the Sea" 6:30pm & "The Journey of C.S. Lewis" 7:45pm

Maui Arts & Cultural Center
4/29: Ha'upu: A Hawaiian Opera
4/29-30: Maui Choral Arts: Sing to Me  Salute to Female Composers
5/02: Santana   concert
5/6-7: MAPA's Spring Extravaganza  dance
5/13: 9th Annual Maui Brewers Festival
5/14: Michael Franti & Spearhead  concert
5/18: Nick Swardson  comedy
5/19: Starry Night Cinema: Finding Dory
5/20: Tibetan Illusion Destroyer 3D Film and Sarah Cahill pianist
5/21: Tribal Seeds   reggae concert
5/25: Maria Muldaur & her Red Hot Bluesiana Band  concert
5/25: Trevor Noah (Daily Show)  8pm & 10pm

So as you read above, the push is on for Hawaii properties with Asian buyers as reflected by the number of investments being made by the Japanese, Chinese, and South Koreans.  We want to make it easier for them to find and shop our property listings, and to that end Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices has teamed  up with China's largest international property website and which will enable about 2 million monthly users to browse our listings.  The website traffic comes from more than 400 cities in China and from 165 countries around the world.  Once again, we're at the forefront.

You also read about residential sale price increases here on Maui and the current crazy low interest rates.  If you're even considering selling your property, you're in a nice situation as inventory is low.  If you're thinking of purchasing a property, lock in that interest rate.  Either way we can help you.  With over 30 years experience in the Maui market, you can't put yourself in better hands.  We'd be glad to review the value of your property with no obligation and complete confidentiality.  Remember, we are the only Berkshire Hathaway Real Estate Brokerage on Maui with offices in Lahaina and Wailea-Makena.  We're available to you 7 days a week.  

John and Sid
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