Queen Kapiolani Hotel, Mililani club being sold


POSTED: Saturday, August 15, 2009

A Los Angeles investor has agreed to purchase the Queen Kapiolani Hotel and Mililani Golf Club in two separate transactions for an undisclosed price.

LA Koreana Inc. of Los Angeles expects to close on the purchases on or about Oct. 15 from local developer Bert A. Kobayashi, who owns both properties, according to Wayne Williams, the company's longtime assets manager.

If the sale closes, Queen Kapiolani would be the first Hawaii hotel in LA Koreana's portfolio.

“;This is their entry in a big way into the Hawaii marketplace,”; said Williams, who is also a partner of Warnick & Co.

LA Koreana, in business in California since 1991, owns several hotel and golf course properties throughout the Pacific Rim, including in Korea, California and Japan, according to Williams. The properties include the Ewa Beach golf course.

Both properties are being purchased through Kobayashi's subsidiaries, QK Hotel LLC and Mililani Golf Course LLC.

“;Both of those assets are well-known, traditional Hawaii assets with a great history,”; said Williams, who was general manager for the Hyatt Regency Waikiki in the 1970s.

“;We feel that Queen Kapiolani has such a history that the real advantage is to bring back some of that history rather than to try to change it to something else.”;

The 19-story Queen Kapiolani Hotel, at 150 Kapahulu Ave., offers 315 rooms and is managed by Castle Resorts. Rooms are being advertised at summer Internet rates of $79 a night.

Williams said LA Koreana has agreed to recognize existing union contracts.

Queen Kapiolani Hotel has about 56 hotel workers who are members of Unite Here Local 5, which has a successorship contract with the current employer, according to union spokesman Cade Watanabe.

The current contract covers the hotel workers until Nov. 30, 2010, according to a notice filed with the state Department of Labor.

Williams said it was too early to go into details since the deal has not closed yet, but that LA Koreana will likely seek a seamless transition.

“;I don't see any reason why we would want to make dramatic changes,”; he said.

Mililani Golf Club, which is owned by Resort Holdings, the parent company of Mililani Golf Club LLC, sits on more than 165 acres at 95-176 Kuahelani Ave. in Mililani.

The 44-year-old golf club has 55 full- and part-time employees, according to director of golf operations Brian Tamamoto.

Mililani Golf Club was first operated by Castle & Cooke, which then transferred it to Sports Shinko, which sold it to Kobayashi in 2002 for $5.5 million, according to county property tax records.