COURTESY OF PINNACLE LAS VEGAS
The Pinnacle Las Vegas will have more than 1,100 units in twin, 36-story towers on 12 acres when it is completed in 2009. CLICK FOR LARGE
Las Vegas condo targets Hawaii buyers
The $850 million project is banking on its price appeal
The Pinnacle Las Vegas offers much of what you might see in a Hawaii luxury condominium -- a spa, fitness center, putting green, garden jogging path, even a hibiscus-shaped pool.
The only thing missing is the walk to the beach.
But realizing that Las Vegas has its own attractions for Hawaii residents, the Pinnacle's developers believe the place to woo second-home buyers is in Hawaii.
Especially since studios, measuring about 650 square feet, begin at $400,000, which is lower than prices for Honolulu luxury residential towers like the Hokua or Koolani.
One-bedroom units at Pinnacle Las Vegas start in the mid-$500,000s, two-bedroom units in the low $700,000s and three-bedroom units average about $1.5 million. Set to break ground this month, the project will have more than 1,100 units in twin, 36-story towers on 12 acres when completed in 2009.
Ron Snyder, managing director of Pinnacle Las Vegas, was pitching the project yesterday to local real estate agents at the Hawaii Association of Realtors convention. He said that there already are buyers from the Aloha State, but declined to say how many.
"Part of the appeal is the price point," said Snyder. "It's much more reasonable than what you'd pay in Honolulu. People here are also predisposed to high-rise living."
At about $615 per square foot, the prices are competitive with second-home resort offerings in Hawaii.
The Pinnacle Las Vegas is being developed by the Falcon Group, a partnership of developers and investors, for about $850 million.
Like some of the local projects, the Pinnacle offers buyers the option of putting the units into a rental program by Interstate Hotels & Resorts.
While some of the Big Island's resort projects and Centex Destination Properties' Ko Olina projects have been attractive to Hawaii residents, the Pinnacle's prices could very well lure Hawaii investors, real estate analyst Ricky Cassiday said.
"That urge to gamble, or to do something exciting compels people to buy in a place that just has a ton of land all around it," Cassiday said. "It's this bowl that's empty."
Watermark Waikiki, with prices starting at $800,000 for two-bedroom units, averages about $1,000 per square foot, according to Cassiday.
Like many of Hawaii's own resort projects, developers of Pinnacle Las Vegas are targeting baby boomers and empty-nesters who want a second home in a vacation destination.
While Hawaii's resorts can offer surf, sunshine and aloha, Las Vegas offers shopping, entertainment, casinos and nightlife.
Close to 500,000 visitors got on a plane from Hawaii to Las Vegas last year, ranking the Aloha State the seventh-highest air market for the city. Hawaii is also one of the top 10 states with residents migrating to Vegas -- a total of 1,775 Hawaii state drivers licenses have been recorded in Las Vegas this year through September.
Snyder said the project's target markets also include second-home buyers from California and the Pacific Rim, particularly buyers from Taipei, Hong Kong and Seoul.
Four out of every 10 home purchases are second-home purchases, either as an investment or vacation home, according to the American Resort Development Association. The trend is only expected to grow as baby boomers enter their peak earning years.