Maui Business

Sale of Royal Lahaina Resort to BlackSand Capital is Complete

December 9, 2021, 1:25 PM HST
* Updated December 10, 12:46 PM
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Royal Lahaina Resort. Photographer: Ryan Siphers Photography

BlackSand Capital, a locally owned and managed Hawai‘i real estate investment firm, completed the purchase of the Royal Lahaina Resort on Maui from Pleasant Travel Service on Dec. 9.

The terms of the sale, including financial details, are not being disclosed. 

“We are very pleased to successfully complete the acquisition of the Royal Lahaina Resort. It is extremely important to us that local investors ultimately own a part of large, established hotels and resorts in Hawai‘i and this transaction supports that mission, making Hawai‘i a better place,” said B.J. Kobayashi, BlackSand’s chairman and CEO in an announcement. “We are committed to supporting the local community and continuing the legacy of experiences and opportunities that the Royal Lahaina Resort has created for its employees and guests. To that end, we have hired Highgate Hawaii Concession Company, LLC, an affiliate of Highgate Hotels, L.P., to assume operations of the Royal Lahaina Resort. We are proud partners with Highgate in another large resort property, the Aston Waikīkī Beach Hotel, and are excited to continue our partnership with them on the Royal Lahaina Resort.”

Royal Lahaina Resort. Photographer: Ryan Siphers Photography

“The pandemic has been a challenging time for all of us in Hawai‘i, and the visitor industry has been especially hard hit,” added Kobayashi. “As a Hawai‘i-based company that invests in Hawai‘i, we see this acquisition as an opportunity to be part of the recovery effort, not just for the visitor industry, but for our local communities and our entire state. We are making an investment in the future of the Royal Lahaina Resort which has been such an integral part of the West Maui community. We credit Pleasant Travel Service for using the time when the resort was closed to refresh the property and we are honored that the Hogan family is entrusting us to carry on the legacy of this iconic property.”

Stephen Hinck has been named the new general manager for the resort. Hinck, a 37-year veteran in the Hawai‘i hospitality market, joined Highgate in 2018 as general manager of the Hilton Garden Inn, Waikīkī.

Royal Lahaina Resort. Photographer: Ryan Siphers Photography
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“We are thrilled to welcome the Royal Lahaina Resort to our portfolio of properties,” said Kelly Sanders, executive vice president of operations for Highgate Hawai‘i. “We have been looking for the right entry into the Maui market and the Royal Lahaina Resort gives us the opportunity to continue our growth throughout the Islands. Our immediate goal is to ensure we are providing our guests with the first-class service they have come to expect. We also are working on plans to refresh many areas of the resort, add new technology to assist in the delivery of service and implement new experiences for our guests and the community.”

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“We also are pleased that Stephen Hinck will be leading our team through the transition as general manager,” said Sanders. “He is an exceptional leader who understands the importance of culture, people and place that make living in Hawai‘i so special. In addition, we are honored and excited that the majority of the associates at the resort decided to join the Highgate team.”

Located on 27 acres of beachfront land on Maui’s Kā‘anapali Beach, the 500-room Royal Lahaina Resort features original beachside cottages, the 12-story Lahaina Kai Tower, resort amenities and expansive lūʻau grounds.

Royal Lahaina Resort. Photographer: Ryan Siphers Photography
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