Home auction ends with builder buying out investors
IT DIDN'T TURN OUT quite the way the auctioneers had hoped, but builder Steve Funke ended up as the winning bidder for the luxury estate he built in Kailua.
The magic number was $14.6 million for the Balinese Estate at 57 Kailuana Place on Castle Point. The bid is a record price for beachfront real estate in Kailua, according to auction organizers.
Funke's financial fortitude wasn't folderol.
The potential for him to participate in the auction, held on Tuesday, was disclosed in the bidders' pamphlet, said publicist Wendi Watson, president of Watson Consulting and Public Relations, based in Oregon.
"It wasn't covert, it wasn't sneaky," she said.
"I love this home," Funke said in a statement. "Having worked on these properties for over two years, I truly understand the value of these properties and appreciate the craftsmanship and exclusive location."
That is in large part why he was the winning bidder. Neither he nor the investors he bought out could let the house go for less.
Organizers were looking for potential buyers with considerably more significant heels.
"The auction ... did not meet our expectations," said Watson, who described Funke's bid as "our viable Plan B."
Of the four homes that were auctioned, the Balinese Estate was the only one that was offered without a minimum price for bids. The other three homes had reserve prices, none of which were met, Watson said.
The highest bid for the Plantation Estate, at 57A Kailuana Place next to the Balinese Estate, was $11.6 million. It wasn't enough, either. It will be listed for traditional sale by Stevan Bailey of Mary Worrall Associates Inc.
The beachfront home at 426 N. Kalaheo Ave. will be listed for sale by Alma Funke, Realtor and principal broker of her self-named realty company. She is also Steve Funke's wife.
The fourth home at 424 N. Kalaheo Ave. will not be immediately listed for sale, Watson said.
Organizers are more upbeat about the fundraising event the night before the lackluster auction.
The benefit gala and concert by Grammy-winning recording artist Roberta Flack Monday night raised $62,000 for two charities, including Honolulu-based Spirit of Aloha, an outreach of the New Hope Christian Fellowship.
It started raining during Flack's hour-long concert but she kept playing until it became clear the piano would have to be moved. After a brief rain delay, the concert continued, Watson said.
Attendees who paid $125 each for tickets toured the two estates, enjoyed food catered by Spirit of Aloha and heard strolling Hawaiian musicians and presentations about each of the organizations that ticket sale proceeds would benefit, Watson said.
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Erika Engle is a reporter with the Star-Bulletin. Call 529-4302, fax 529-4750 or write to Erika Engle, Honolulu Star-Bulletin, 500 Ala Moana Blvd., No. 7-210, Honolulu, HI 96813. She can also be reached at: email@example.com