Blackstone Buys Maui Hotel, Condo Property

Ares Management, SMW Hospitality and Trinity Investments sold the Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua, which encompasses a 297-key luxury resort and 107 condos on the Hawaiian island’s northwest shore.

By Keith Loria, Contributing Editor

The Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua
The Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua

Blackstone Real Estate Partners has acquired the Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua, a 297-key, AAA Five Diamond hotel and 107 condos in Lahaina, Hawaii. The seller is a joint venture of Ares Management; SMW Hospitality, a joint venture of Square Mile Capital Management and Wafra Inc.; and Trinity Investments.

Located at 1 Ritz Carlton Drive on Maui’s lush northwest shore, the oceanfront property is situated on 49 acres. The property was acquired in 2016 by the joint venture sellers who implemented an extensive capital improvement plan that included renovating the hotel’s common areas and guestrooms.

“The Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua was acquired at a compelling basis and had a clear redevelopment plan that was a strong fit for our opportunistic investment strategy,” Andrew Holm, Ares Real Estate Group’s partner, said in a prepared statement. “We are proud of the work we did with our partners to further improve what was already an iconic Maui property.”

For its part, Square Mile Capital anticipated the tourism surge that is driving the robust local hospitality market, explained Nolan Hecht, a senior managing director at the firm. “Along with Ares, we saw an opportunity to buy this particular property at a discount two years ago and reposition it very profitably,” he commented in a statement.

A world-class resort

The property is part of the 23,000-acre master-planned Kapalua resort on Maui, recognized for its golden sand beaches, world-class golf courses, award-winning tennis facility and numerous restaurants and shops.

The hotel guestrooms boast 37-inch flat-screen TVs, iPod docks and marble bathrooms with soaking tubs. Amenities include a high-end spa, an outdoor pool and a fitness center. There are also six restaurants and a 173,120-square-foot event space.

The Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua maintains the Honokahua Preservation Site, a recognized sacred land that lies adjacent to the resort and a place where Native Hawaiians gather to conduct ceremonies and protocol.  

“We believe the outcome of this transaction reflects the significant value we were able to create over the hold period,” Sean Hehir, Trinity Investments’ managing partner, said. “The deal is a perfect example of how we leverage our intimate local market knowledge and proven platform to generate compelling risk-adjusted returns on invested capital.”

In September, Ares Management inked a $270 million deal to sell its interest in the development of the 2 million-square-foot Gaylord Rockies Resort & Convention Center in Aurora, Colo., to Ryman Hospitality Properties Inc. and RIDA Development Corp.

Image courtesy of Trinity Real Estate Investments

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