Tourism authority has plans for $1.2M surplus

The Hawaii Tourism Authority plans to use $1.24 million left over from 2003 to fund several projects that will help promote the destination.


The authority said it plans to spend $100,000 on a cultural film grant program to support films that market Hawaii and will invest another $100,000 to help launch a statewide National Heritage Corridor program.

Under the corridor program, areas such as Hanalei, the Hamakua Coast and Waikiki would be designated heritage corridors. The program would link tourist areas through a common system of signs and through marketing.

The surplus, which will help fund seven additional projects,  includes money returned by the Hawaii Visitors & Convention Bureau to correct accounting irregularities uncovered in a state audit.

In other Hawaii Tourism Authority news, John Toner, executive vice president of Ko Olina Resort Association, was elected chairman, and Nadine Nakamura, NKN Project Planning on Kauai, was elected vice chairman.

Also, Doug Chang, general manager of the Hotel Hana-Maui, and Cheryl Williams, regional director of sales and marketing of Starwood Hotels, were appointed to interim terms on the HTA board.

Their four-year appointments are expected to be confirmed by the state Senate when it resumes its legislative session. Chang also serves as president of the Native Hawaiian Hospitality Association.

It's official. Computer mogul Michael Dell has entered the hospitality arena in Hawaii.

Dell Inc. and MSD Capital, the company created by Dell to manage his capital, closed on the acquisition of the Four Seasons Resort Maui. The value of the Wailea resort is estimated at more than $250 million.

According to Glenn Fuhrman, a managing partner with MSD Capital, the company has formed a real estate investment group "committed to building a leading global real estate group," and this purchase "is a great first step."

Outrigger Enterprises agreed to sell its Waikoloa Beach Marriott and Wailea Marriott resorts to affiliates of Blackstone Real Estate Advisors of New York for an undisclosed price.The agreement could be finalized as early as July 30.

Blackstone recently sold the Hyatt Regency Maui.

The Wailea Marriott and the Waikoloa Beach Marriott have been operated by Outrigger through a franchise agreement with Marriott International. The hotels will continue to be affiliated with Marriott International after Blackstone acquires them.

Atlantis Adventures increased travel agent commissions for its Hawaii-based activities -- Atlantis Submarines, Atlantis Cruises and Sea Life Park Hawaii -- from 10% to 15%. The 15% commission is available to all noncontracted travel agents.

Client reservations can be booked by calling Atlantis at (800) 548-6262 or via e-mail at [email protected].

To spotlight the completion of its $20 million renovation, the Outrigger Waikiki revealed a year-round exhibit of authentic native Hawaiian artifacts.

More than two dozen items - all on loan from private collectors, galleries and museums throughout the U.S. - will rotate on a quarterly basis in and around the hotel's lobby during the course of this year, joining the lobby's permanent fixture, a century-old koa canoe.

The hotel's renovation began in the fall of 2002 and included all 530 guest rooms, public areas, dining facilities and lobby.

Hawaiian Airlines partnered with Island Air to meet an increase in demand for interisland seats. Beginning Aug. 1, the carrier will added a Honolulu-to-Maui flight as well as an afternoon Honolulu-to-Hilo (Big Island) flight. Each route will increase seat capacity by more than 850.

Molokai and Lanai suffered cutbacks in service, as these routes were frequently flying well under capacity, according to a Hawaiian representative.

The Poipu Bay Golf Course will host the 2004 PGA Grand Slam of Golf tournament for the 11th consecutive year. The dates are Dec. 2 to 4, with the Pro Am event taking place on Dec. 2, the first round on Dec. 3 and the final round on Dec. 4.

Tickets can be purchased at or by calling (800) PGA-TCKT.

Host Marriott Corp. bought the Fairmont Kea Lani in Maui for $355 million. The property is Host Marriott's second in Hawaii, after the Hyatt Regency Resort & Spa. The corporation also owns hotels operated by Ritz-Carlton, Four Seasons, Hilton and Westin.

United Airlines announced the relaunch of daily nonstop service between Chicago (O'Hare) and Honolulu.

The flight, aboard a Boeing 777 with 348 seats, departs Chicago at 10:15 a.m. and arrives in Honolulu at 1:45 p.m. The return trip will depart Hawaii at 4:25 p.m. and arrive in Chicago at 5:15 a.m. the following day.

The carrier also initiated a second daily nonstop Tokyo to Honolulu flight aboard a Boeing 777. United already flies nonstop daily to both Tokyo and Osaka, Japan.

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