Is an Atlantis resort headed for Hawaii?

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West Oahu’s Ko Olina district, home to Disney’s Aulani, the Marriott Ko Olina Beach Club and the Four Seasons Resort Oahu, opening this summer.
West Oahu’s Ko Olina district, home to Disney’s Aulani, the Marriott Ko Olina Beach Club and the Four Seasons Resort Oahu, opening this summer. Photo Credit: Tor Johnson/Hawaii Tourism Authority

Speculation persists about the possible construction of a new Atlantis Resorts property at Ko Olina on the west coast of Oahu. 

Jack Richards, the president and CEO of Los Angeles-based Pleasant Holidays, brought up the potential development project earlier this week at Travel Weekly’s annual Hawaii Roundtable, an on-the-record conversation with a collection of tourism executives and stakeholders held Wednesday at the Sheraton Waikiki.

“We’ve been in discussions with Atlantis, and they have an option on the land next to the Aulani,” Richards said, referring to a vacant beachfront property neighboring the Disney resort at Ko Olina. “I don’t know if it’s going to happen or not, but according to them, it is going to happen.”

A number of reports about a potential Atlantis Resorts development at Ko Olina appeared across local Hawaii media outlets in late January, all of them based on unnamed sources. In fact, a Jan. 22 Hawaii News Now report cited sources who indicated the new 15-acre Oahu property might resemble Atlantis the Palm, Dubai, and could cost more than $2 billion to build, making it the most expensive resort ever.  

Richards, meanwhile, didn’t offer any specifics about what Atlantis officials might be planning for Oahu, but he did make it clear he felt the potential development would be a positive for Aloha State tourism.

“That brings a different and new hotel chain to the Hawaiian Islands,” he said. “We hope it happens.” 

The 650-acre Ko Olina Resort on the western coast of Oahu is currently home not only to Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa, but also the Marriott Ko Olina Beach Club and the new Four Seasons Resort Oahu, which is slated to welcome its first guests this summer.

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