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Thoughts on Ward Village in Waikiki?

Discussion in 'Hawaii' started by rkuo, Jul 19, 2015.

  1. rkuo

    rkuo Formula 3
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    Aug 17, 2009
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    I notice they are building several towers full of luxury condos on top of a major retail development.

    Pros: right next to the mall, seems like it will be next to a Whole Foods and on top of all that retail. Seems like the views from many of the units will be spectacular.

    Cons: the retail seems interesting but mid range in many ways. That many condos at once could really go south quickly if people decide the pricing in the heart of Waikiki isn't really comparable for location. And how many locals can actually afford to live here? Is this just an excuse to sell luxury real estate to out of towners?

    Thoughts? I'm especially curious to hear from anyone that has been through the center recently.
     
  2. WPOZZZ

    WPOZZZ F1 Rookie

    Aug 22, 2012
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    My broker got me into looking at the investor units for Anaha. When we got there, only 2 1 bd units were left and they were on the podium of the building and in a not so good spot. I passed. He was really pushing for me to get a unit in A'eo, but I passed as well.

    In the next 15 years or so, Hughes Development plans to put up about 20 towers in the Ward area. This is what it will look like when they are finished, and this is only the Hughes projects.

    http://honolulumagazine-images.dashdigital.com/images/2014/April14/Print/Boomtown_ward.jpg?ver=1396917730
     
  3. rkuo

    rkuo Formula 3
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    It seems a little weird to be stacking luxury housing on top of a McDonald's and some outlet stores, but maybe I'm getting the wrong impression.

    The plan to build literally 20 towers worries me. Is the real estate here is directly comparable to Waikiki proper? Are there enough locals that can support buying a massive supply of luxury condos? Could be a recipe for a glut and crash.
     
  4. WPOZZZ

    WPOZZZ F1 Rookie

    Aug 22, 2012
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    A lot of the newer condos are doing the mixed use retail/commercial on the lower floors with residential above. The latest one, A'eo, with Whole Foods on the bottom floor seems to appeal to people due to the convenience of grocery shopping, then catching the elevator home.

    As for myself, I don't like the mix of retail/commercial and residential. One Ala Moana is built on top of the Nordstrom building, and another development at Ala Moana will be on top of the new area being constructed. These units are all averaging $1M+ and are being snapped up! I can't understand the attraction of living at a shopping center with all the noise and traffic. You do have one hell of a view, but the area roads get shut down for the Honolulu Marathon and the many parades during the year.
     
  5. rkuo

    rkuo Formula 3
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    Oh don't get me wrong, i'm actually a fan of mixed use developments ... it's just that these seem a bit incongruous.
     
  6. F355steve

    F355steve Formula 3

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    I've looked into these and the prices just seem like Ferrari asking prices. I fear though that the ease at which supply can increase don't make theses appealing. I'll be renting something similar before buying one.
     
  7. Kevin Rev'n

    Kevin Rev'n F1 World Champ
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    I understand that we are looking a shift in the demands of citizens. This kind of lifestyle is really the only one that makes sense moving forward for many people. I don't know about the timing of these kinds of projects in the big scheme of things but they solve a lot of problems.
     
  8. dragonshoe

    dragonshoe Karting

    Mar 28, 2009
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    Mixed use has to be the way of the future, notice with 20 + cranes putting in high rises that there is not a square inch of new road... it makes sense to be able to shop and socialize without driving, and Ala Moana beach/park is across the street.
     
  9. F355steve

    F355steve Formula 3

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    Last week I watched a special on TV about the development in Kakaako. It makes sense that this area would be developed as it is so close to everything in Honolulu but this just makes me think where is the money coming from that is expected to buy these thousands (yes, that is how many are in the pipeline) of $1MM-$25MM condos that are being built in Honolulu over the next 5 years?

    I have read a bit into it and there is only so much foreign "investors" can absorb, correct? To me it makes my stomach turn because it just seems like more and more Hawaii is selling its soul to outsiders to continue to keep up the current standard of living for the locals.

    Maybe this is a touchy subject for some and maybe as long as it is contained to Honolulu most don't care but it interests me greatly. Would love to hear other thoughts on the matter.
     
  10. rkuo

    rkuo Formula 3
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    My impression is that it's mostly Japanese money. A good portion of the kakaako stuff gets priority sold to local owner occupants before investors, however, and there's workforce housing rate units on top of that. Stuff like the trump and ritz in Waikiki was very largely Japanese money tho.

    The Howard Hughes Ward village stuff was pretty impressive just in terms of the amount they are planning to build. I didn't find the shopping area it's built on very appealing, but that is obviously going to improve over time. The sales center they have is totally ridiculous and clearly built with the intention to help sell all 20-ish of those high rises.
     
  11. Kevin Rev'n

    Kevin Rev'n F1 World Champ
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    #11 Kevin Rev'n, Oct 18, 2015
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2015
    Its awful watching the further demise of the place that I call home. Close to 10 million visitors per year and only 1 million residents! When do they stop the non-residential growth? I bet 90% of all those units turn into vacation or short term rentals.


    EDIT:
    I just noticed my earlier post! My understanding of the issues changes as I become more aware of my surroundings. It is hard to see New York Manhattan density without the supporting economy. It's an interesting study though. This would be a great time to be a college student in urban planning because things are changing very fast here and in near real time! The "issues" just beyond the horizon look to be of a magnitude that require more careful consideration than is being displayed by the current leadership.
     
  12. norcal2

    norcal2 F1 Veteran
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    Those of us around long enough to remember the 80's boom of Japanese real estate investment and bust in the 90's, perhaps there is a trend....I did pick up property in the bust timeframe, and it took years to get out of it....
     

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