LOWERED EXPECTATIONS: Hawaii lowered its economic
forecasts, reflecting the ongoing struggles of the state's $10
billion tourism industry. The state Dept. of Business, Economic
Development and Tourism, estimated that 6.4 million tourists will
have visited Hawaii in 2002, spending more than $10.3 billion.
These figures are 1.8% higher than last year's arrivals and
represent a 2.2% increase in spending. But the improvements are
less than half of earlier expectations. And last month's weak
visitor arrivals from both Japan and the U.S. mainland did not
help. The DBEDT forecast for 2003 is 6.9 million visitors and $11.1
billion in spending, representing another decrease in its original
OUTRIGGER ENTERPRISES said it will enter into a
franchise agreement with Marriott Int'l in a move that emphasizes
Outrigger's ongoing effort to reach new markets. Scheduled to take
effect Jan. 1, the changes involve the 521-room Outrigger Wailea
Resort on Maui, which will be known as the Wailea Marriott, an
Outrigger Resort, and the 545-room Outrigger Waikoloa Beach Resort
on the Big Island, which will be called the Waikoloa Beach
Marriott, an Outrigger Resort. Outrigger will continue to own and
manage both properties.
AT THE CONTROLS: Hawaiian Airlines appointed
Mark Dunkerley its new president and COO, effective Jan. 1. He will
report directly to John Adams, who will continue to serve as the
company's chairman and CEO but will relinquish the title of
president. A licensed commercial pilot who has held executive
airline positions for 17 years, Dunkerley worked for British
Airways before serving as president and COO at the Dallas-based
airport ground service provider, Worldwide Flight Services. He then
joined Sabena Airlines Group in Brussels, where he served as COO
until April of this year.
THREE MORE UNIONS at Aloha Airlines ratified
new labor agreements with 10% pay cuts. The contracts bring the
carrier closer to securing final approval of a $40.5 million
federal loan guarantee. The separate ratifications by the flight
attendants, transport workers and pilots unions followed earlier
approval of the pay cuts by the mechanics union. In an effort to
obtain the loan guarantee, the airline had asked all of its 3,000
employees to take pay cuts totaling $37 million over the next three
years. Wage concessions will take effect Jan. 1.
FAIRMONT HOTELS & Resorts completed its
acquisition of the Orchid at Mauna Lani on the Big Island of
Hawaii. The purchase price was about $140 million. In January, the
539-room property will be flagged The Fairmont Orchid, Hawaii.
HOLLAND AMERICA said its Statendam on Dec. 28
will become the first cruise ship to visit Molokai. HAL expects
60%, or about 1,200 passengers and crew, to tender ashore--weather
conditions permitting. The visit is one of five slated over the
next 18 months. Molokai is expected to take in more than $650,000
from the tourists.
MEANWHILE, environmental law firm Earthjustice
argued in a lawsuit on behalf of a Molokai community group earlier
this month that cruise ships should not be allowed to call on
Molokai until an environmental impact assessment is done. However,
a Maui second circuit judge refused to grant an injunction before
the Statendam's arrival.
• Pleasant Holidays is offering reduced rates on seven-night
packages from San Francisco and Los Angeles to Oahu or Maui leaving
Dec. 31 and returning to California on Jan. 7. Waikiki holidays
start at $378 per person, double occupancy. Maui trips start at
$539 per person, double occupancy. Call (800) 448-3333.
• Pleasant also offers Hyatt Island Hopper, but this package is
available through Dec. 16, 2003. Stays must include two Hyatt
Regency hotels for a total of seven nights to qualify for special
rates, complimentary breakfasts and room upgrades. A sample: four
nights in Waikiki and three on Maui, starting at $1175 per person,
• Hanalei Colony Resort will offer 50% off rack rates--with
two-bedroom units as low as $99 per night--for travel between Jan.
4 and Feb. 20, 2003. Three-night minimum stay at the condominium
beach resort is required. Call (800) 628-3004.
• Gogo's new Hawaii deals include a five-night stay at the Sheraton
Kauai Resort starting at $649, and $925 with airfare. Packages
include daily buffet breakfast and sunset mai tais. The package
must be booked by March 15, 2003. Visit www.gogowwv.com.