Travel Weekly's Hawaii E-letter, Nov. 10, 2003

THE WAIKIKI TERRACE HOTEL will change ownership and undergo an $11 million renovation before its conversion to upscale condominium units in April, when it will be rebranded the Outrigger Luana Waikiki. Plans include converting the 242-room hotel to 217 condominium units comprised of 186 studio suites, 29 one-bedroom suites and two 2-bedroom suites. Units will receive new furniture and fixtures, and public areas will be enhanced. Renovations have already begun on the property, located adjacent to Fort DeRussy Park on Kalakaua Avenue. Throughout the renovation period, the hotel will continue to accept reservations. Outrigger Hotels & Resorts will begin managing the 17-story building in December when ownership shifts to Waikiki Terrace LLC, a recently formed Honolulu-based company. Terms of the sale were not disclosed. (800) 688-7444; www.outrigger.comHAWAII'S HOTEL INDUSTRY room revenue reached $1.9 billion through the third quarter, an increase of 4.7% compared with year-ago levels, according to surveys compiled by Smith Travel Research and Hospitality Advisors. Hotel occupancy also increased 2.4% to 73% through September. Statewide revenue-per-available room rose 5.7% to $105.74 by the end of the third quarter. Compared with the top 25 hotel markets in the country, Hawaii had the highest occupancy for the first nine months of the year, followed closely by New York City. For September, Hawaii's hotel occupancy rose 5.6% to 70.2%. Kauai led all other islands with an occupancy rate of 80.2% in September.

KONA VILLAGE RESORT, a series of luxury, thatched-roof huts on the Big Island's beaches, is offering a gift to travel agents who book new families at the property in January, February, June, July, August, October and November 2004. Families must be first-time guests and stay a minimum of three nights. For each cottage booked by a family with at least one child three years old or older, the travel agent will receive either a $25 Macy's gift certificate or a $25 Kona Village gift certificate. They can be used by agents or passed along to the traveling family as a mahalo gift. Bookings through wholesalers or service agencies qualify. (800) 367-5290;

STARWOOD HAWAII knows that Christmas is rapidly approaching. In addition to many special activities for the holidays, the chain will decorate its 13 hotels and resorts throughout the Islands. Sheraton Hawaii will sponsor the Sheraton Hawaii Bowl collegiate football game on Christmas Day at Aloha Stadium. The Manele Bay Hotel and the Lodge at Koele on Lanai are offering special activities and amenities for the holidays, such as "Thanksgiving by the Sea," "Light Lunch with Santa," and New Year's Eve fireworks. (888) 488-3535;


... Pleasant Holidays is gearing up for the NFL Pro Bowl with official fan packages Feb. 5 to 9 in Honolulu. All packages include a lei greeting, airport transfers, accommodations at a Waikiki hotel for four nights, breakfast orientation, transfers to and from Aloha Stadium on game day, a VIP tailgate party, game tickets, a tote bag and a Hilo Hattie gift certificate. Pleasant's customers also will be entered to win a free upgrade to stay four nights at the JW Marriott Ihilani Resort & Spa at Ko Olina, headquarters for the NFL players. Packages start at $859 per person, including air from Los Angeles or San Francisco [$1099 per person from the Midwest or East Coast]. Vacations with accommodations at the exclusive Halekulani start at $2019. Platinum and Platinum Plus packages include preferred-sideline seating and a VIP party with the NFL players and cheerleaders. (800) 5-HAWAII;

... THE GRAND WAILEA RESORT HOTEL & SPA has two new packages for one of the most luxurious properties on Maui. "Bed & Breakfast" rates start at $396 per room, per night, including accommodations in a terrace room with a daily breakfast buffet. "Room & Car" rates begin at $390 with accommodations in a terrace room and rental of a midsize car. All rates are valid through Oct. 31. (800) 888-6100;

... FUNJET VACATIONS is giving travelers 50% off companion air fare to Hawaii when they stay at Starwood Hotels & Resorts. A four- night stay is required during the following dates: through Dec. 15 or Jan. 5 to April 30. The offer is valid at the Royal Hawaiian, Sheraton Princess Kaiulani, Sheraton Moana Surfrider and W Honolulu Diamond Head Hotel on Oahu; Lodge at Koele and Manele Bay Hotel on Lanai; Princeville Resort and Sheraton Kauai Resort on Kauai; the Sheraton Molokai Lodge and Beach Village on Molokai; and the Kapalua Bay Hotel and Ocean Villas, Sheraton Maui, Westin Maui and the Westin Maui Kaanapali Ocean Resort and Villas on Maui. The 50% discount is valued at $150 per reservation based on a $300 round-trip air fare from Los Angeles to Honolulu. A minimum reservation of $2,400 is also required. Packages must be booked via VaxVacationAccess with promotional code STARHAW. (800) 558-3050;

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