Fisherman's Wharf location is up for lease


POSTED: Saturday, September 05, 2009

The tides of change are once again churning around the old Fisherman's Wharf site at Kewalo Basin.

The state Hawaii Community Development Authority, which owns the land and building at the intersection of Ala Moana and Ward Avenue, is seeking bidders for the restaurant building's lease.

HCDA Executive Director Anthony Ching said the agency is looking for a more permanent restaurant operator for the iconic location.

It has for the last five years operated as The Living Room At The Wharf, a bar and lounge with live music, offering a late-night bar menu of cocktails and appetizers, including island poke, Kalbi wings, and kalua pig spring rolls.

The restaurant and bar operation belongs to Nittaku Investment Inc., which acquired the Fisherman's Wharf location as part of its purchase of Spencecliff Corp. in 1986.

Ching said Nittaku has indicated it was interested in bidding for the lease.

A new owner conceivably could take over the lease as well, and offer a sublease arrangement with Nittaku to continue The Living Room.

However, continued use of the Fisherman's Wharf name, which appears at the top of the building, would be up to Nittaku.

The restaurant has for years been on a month-to-month lease at Kewalo Basin, and was once used as a filming location in one of the episodes for ABC's “;Lost.”;

HCDA is offering a five-year lease, with two five-year extension options. The bids are due on or before 2 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 25.

A copy of the notice is available at http://www.hcdaweb.org.

Formerly, the state Department of Transportation handled the restaurant's lease, but those duties were transferred to HCDA earlier this year, along with the management of Kewalo Basin, Ching said.