June 22, 2012||Big Island Communities: Districts & Subdivisions, Big Island: Market Trends


Not Ready to Buy a Hawaiian Island? A Big Island Ranch Property May Be Just Right

Steven J. Ellison, R(S)

Steven J. Ellison, R(S)

My Long Lost Uncle? An Ellison Connection?

Hawaii real estate has been making international news this week. It’s been hard to miss the headlines:

Wall Street Journal – Larry Ellison to Buy Island in Hawaii

Pacific Business News – What Larry Ellison is Buying on Lanai: Slideshow

CNN Oracle CEO Larry Ellison buys Hawaiian island of Lanai

Since the news was made public on Wednesday that Oracle CEO Larry Ellison is in the process of purchasing 98% of the island of Lanai from Castle & Cooke Hawaii, I’ve received many calls from friends and co-workers asking me (tongue-in-cheek) if Larry is a relative or long lost uncle. Though we share a last name, the best I could offer is that, although we are not related, I would still invite him over for a holiday BBQ dinner and welcome him as we would any new neighbor – perhaps even share a Kona brew – should he find himself in Hawaii and not busy.

According to the WSJ article, Larry Ellison’s deal to purchase the majority of the 141 square mile island was disclosed by Hawaii’s Governor after a filing with the Public Utilities Commission. The asking price for the property, as reported by The Maui News, was between $500 and $600 million. Lanai is the smallest of the inhabited Hawaiian Islands with public access and features two resorts and golf courses.

Large Acreage and Luxury Market Activity on the Big Island of Hawaii

Larry Ellison’s purchase is part of a growing trend of larger estate and land sales in the Islands. Recently, several impressive properties here on the Big Island have sold or gone into escrow. Even so, for buyers who are interested in large acreage properties, there are still several options available, even for those who may not be looking in the “above $500M” price range.

Kukaiau Ranch MLS 253657

IN ESCROW - Kukaiau Ranch is located on Hawaii's Hamakua Coast - photo courtesy Hawaii Pacific Brokers, LLC

Located on the Hamakua Coast of the Big Island, the 9,300+ acre property pictured above (MLS 253657 – Kukaiau Ranch) recently went into escrow. Last list price, $16.8M. The nearby Mauna Kea Ranch (MLS 229804), with over 1,000 acres and a list price of $3.7M, is now in escrow as well.

In West Hawaii, the 584-acre Poho Kala Ranch (MLS 247466), with its unique French farmhouse “castle” is now a pending sale, last list price $3.95M.

The Big Island’s coastal resorts are also showing increased activity in the luxury market. Since January 2012, the MLS shows there have been 8 sales of resort homes priced between $5-$13.75M, in keeping with the previous year’s trend of 18 sales over $5M. Most of these sales occured in the Hualalai and Kukio Resorts.

So What’s Left for the Buyer Seeking Large Acreage Hawaiian Property?

For those in the market for large acreage Big Island property, there are still opportunities to find your corner of paradise in the Islands, whether it be your own ranch or private oceanfront estate.

Here are a few options on the Big Island:

Monoha’a Ranch

MLS 253431

Monoha'a Ranch combines 4 of the most desirable parcels from the historic Greenwell Estate Ranch

View video tour of Monoha’a Ranch

View MLS 253431 property details, additional photos and map

On the upper western slopes above historic Kealakekua Bay, historic Monaha’a Ranch, with over 1,150 acres and three ranch homes, was recently listed for sale. This breathtaking property, one of our Luxury Portfolio International™ listings, was once part of the H.C. Greenwell Estate. The current owner combined four of the prime parcels to create the ranch. The property is perfect for ultimate privacy and seclusion, but only a few minutes to the quaint town of Kealakekua. List price $9.8M.

Naalehu Ranch

Naalehu MLS 231303

Multi-zoned Naalehu Ranch includes pasture and forest - photo courtesy Hawaii Pacific Brokers, LLC

View MLS 231303 property details, map and additional photos

According to the listing agent, Charles A. Anderson, R(B), of Hawaii Pacific Brokers, LLC, Naalehu Ranch consists of virtually all the land above Naalehu in the Ka’u district, including irrigation water rights to the Kahilipali Water Tunnel, which is located on the property. The land has multiple zonings, allowing for industrial, residential and agricultural use. Lush pasture, forest and sweeping ocean and coastline views from South Point to Volcano National Park set this property apart from others on the market in other areas of the Big Island.

Historic South Hilo Acerage

In South Hilo, there is a 564 acre property for sale (MLS 244474 – list price $6.495M). Once part of the Big Island sugar cane plantation lands, this property features streams, waterfalls and views of Mauna Kea and Hilo Bay.

Kohala Coast Ranch and Luxury Home

If living near the beaches of the Kona-Kohala Coast is more your preference, there is a beautiful home on 25 acres in Puakea Bay Ranch that offers the benefits of a gated community as well as the option of using the property in a number of creative ways. The 9 bedroom, 9 bath home features over 11,300 sq ft of living space, plus it has an oceanfront tennis court and a separate guest residence. MLS 232548 is being offered for a cool $13.75M.

For those of us who won’t be buying an entire island in Hawaii any time soon, the Big Island offers some impressive alternatives. For details about these and other estate properties offered on the Big Island, please contact me at 808-936-3000.

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