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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Big Island home sells for $26.2 million

by Andrew Gomes
Advertiser Staff Writer

Last year wasn't such a good year for Hawai'i real estate. But for Hualalai Resort, 2009 was great.

The Big Island resort yesterday reported that one of its homeowners sold their property for $26.25 million the most ever paid for a home in Hualalai Resort's 13-year history.

Resort officials also said the Dec. 14 sale was the largest for a single home last year in Hawai'i. Resort officials would not release a photo of the home.

The highest price paid for a Hawai'i home in 2009 was an oceanfront compound on Kaua'i with a 15,000-square-foot house and two 4,000-square-foot guest bungalows. The 174-acre Kaua'i property, called Tara Plantation, was developed about a decade ago by entertainment executive Peter Guber, and sold for $28 million in November.

Other homes in Hawai'i have sold for more than $30 million in prior years.

For all of last year, the median price of homes sold on the Big Island was $279,000, down from $345,000 the year before, according to Hawai'i Information Service.

The Hualalai Resort home is 8,630 square feet with five bedrooms, 5 1/4 bathrooms, an open-air dining room and living room pavilion on a 1-acre oceanfront parcel with botanical gardens, four lava rock outdoor shower gardens, two oceanside hot tubs and one cold plunge pool.

According to property records, the home was built in 2001. The sellers were Robert I. and Jannine B. MacDonnell, who bought the property in 1998 for $3.7 million. The buyer was not identified by Hualalai Resort. Property records list the buyer as a limited liability company called H25A LLC.

Hualalai said the record sale, as well as four other homes sold for more than $10 million, helped push total sales of new and previously owned homes at the Kona Coast resort to more than $150 million last year.

"Hualalai Realty did an outstanding job in 2009 despite a very difficult economic environment," said Patrick Fitzgerald, Hualalai Resort CEO. "Our buyers recognize that the Hualalai lifestyle is rare and extremely special."