A&B, Brookfield
to develop high-end
homes on Big Isle

Targeted for development
is a 30.5-acre parcel in the
Mauna Lani Resort

Alexander & Baldwin Inc. and Brookfield Homes Corp. plan to jointly develop a 30.5-acre residential parcel in the Big Island's exclusive Mauna Lani Resort, hoping to tap into a huge wave of demand for Hawaii resort properties fueled by wealthy mainland buyers.

Plans call for a mix of high-end single- and multifamily homes and house lots accompanied by resort recreational amenities on the property, which abuts one of the resort's two golf courses.

Art "The market along the Kona Coast has been very strong and we saw this as a great opportunity to be a part of that," said Mike Wright, A&B Properties senior vice president.

He said the two companies bought 55 acres in the area, then turned around and sold 25 acres to Stanford Carr Development, which Wright said has its own plans to develop.

Stanford Carr could not be reached yesterday for comment.

A&B and Brookfield formed a 50/50 joint venture called MLR Golf Partners LLC, which acquired the Kohala Coast land. Terms were not disclosed. MLR Golf Partners will handle all planning, development and sales for the project.

The seller was Tokyu Inc. of Japan, the original developer of Mauna Lani, a 3,200-acre resort featuring two hotels, the two championship golf courses and a number of exclusive residential developments.

The partnership allows one of Hawaii's biggest landowners and one of the nation's top homebuilders to pursue a shared goal -- expanding in Hawaii real estate.

A&B Properties Inc., Alexander & Baldwin's real estate arm, said the land deal marked the company's 20th purchase of island real estate in the last five years.

"We continue to implement the strategy we adopted a few years ago of growing A&B's real estate business through new acquisitions and investments," said Stanley Kuriyama, vice chairman and chief executive officer of A&B Properties.

A&B is now the state's eighth-largest private landowner with about 91,000 acres.

"They'll do very well," says Robert Cheesbrough, a Big Island broker-developer and president of the Kona Board of Realtors, who said he expects the Big Island's resort real estate boom to continue, fueled by "rich baby-boomers" from the mainland.

"They'll probably sell out before even putting a bulldozer on the property," he said.


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