Songdoc, how is your January trip to Kauai?

Jan 29th, 2013, 02:04 PM
Join Date: Nov 2011
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Hey - I remember Jim Harbaugh (now the coach of the Super Bowl bound 49ers) winning the NFL QB challenge at Vidinha stadium by Lihue. (Now more known for their Farmer's Market -see below - but also close to where we caught a great helicopter ride with Jack Harter. )

Drove down for that from our timeshare at the Cliffs Club/Princeville - while my wife hung out at the pool.

He was also the most mobile of the QB's back then.

Kal - that was in 1988.


Tomsd is offline  
Jan 30th, 2013, 07:31 AM
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Kal - that was in 1988.
BC or AD?

Loved watching those competitions on TV. That and the the old Master Card PGA Tourney of Champs of Golf at Poipu GC.
The golf meant we were closer to returning. \/
The NFL competition meant we had just been.
Kal is offline  
Jan 30th, 2013, 07:57 AM
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LOL. Can't remember if it was AD or BC.

And amen to watching the golf pros at Poipu. Will always remember Greg Norman and Nick Faldo - looking at and commenting on how beautiful waves the waves were - while taking a break when they were playing their rounds at Poipu.

And good old Jim Harbaugh - hope he and the Niners win the Super Bowl. Got to know Jim a bit when he was coaching here at the University of San Diego (he also played a couple seasons for the Chargers) - his first head coaching job - and helped out a little bit when he later was back down here recruiting for Stanford.

Hey Songdoc. Hope you like golf and/or football?
Tomsd is offline  
Jan 30th, 2013, 08:18 AM
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uno mas for S'doc...
Doubt if mini-golf is your thing but the landscaping at the little putt putt course by Kilauea sure has GROWN. Wow.

Mrs Ster and some local pals have golfed there when it first opened but now....
Heard it's now like a mini-Arboretum.
Kal is offline  
Jan 30th, 2013, 09:50 AM
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I don't watch much football and I no longer golf. These days, the only sport that gets my heart pounding is looking at Kauai real estate!

I found my absolute fantasy ... I'm only a half a million dollars short! I'll soon be opening a website where you can all contribute: "The Mid-Life Orphan's Kauai Real Estate Fund." In exchange for $10K you get to stop by and look at the view. For $50K I'll throw in tickets to a luau and a helicopter ride. For $100K, heck--I'll write you a song and maybe even let you stay there when I'm traveling. I could put a plaque on the wall with all your names--and you'd have the pride and pleasure of knowing you made a dream come true. Who wants to be the first??? HAHAHA.

Kal--thanks for the info re: the Kilauea mini course. It looks beautiful when I drive by. Will probably do that with my sister on her next visit.

I've been busy, busy, busy! But you'll have to wait for the trip report to learn about my very different--but wonderful--trip ;-).

But I will say that after one rainy day and one cloudy one, yesterday's weather could not have been more perfect!
Songdoc is offline  
Jan 30th, 2013, 10:07 AM
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We have been shocked over the RE prices on Kauai the past few trips. Shudda bought the ocean view condo in Poipu for $50k post-Iniki.

Safe travels, bragh.
Kal is offline  
Jan 30th, 2013, 03:12 PM
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Hey - my check is in the mail. And I'll take the Mauka facing lanai for my visits pleez

Wow - $50K-ish for a condo post-Iniki? Didn't know they got that low, but if you saw these pics - you probably were not thinking of buying.

Was on island two? weeks after Iniki for a board meeting up at the Cliffs Club/Princeville - and was amazed at how it looked. It was as if a giant lawn mower had been lowered from the sky - and everything over about 30 feet had been uniformly trimmed down. They had cleared the roads but there were still big trees lying by the sides of the road. The fearsome wind had supposedly gusted up to 175 mph out at sea - dropping to a mere 160 mph gusts as it passed over the western end of Kauai.

All things considered - Cliffs Club fared ok - (mostly broken glass/water damage/roof repairs) - but years later - residual mold was discovered, worsened of course by Iniki.

Had looked at buying a house in Princeville way back when - late 80's - and you could pick them up for under $200K. No longer - that's for sure.

Actually - in the late 70's - one of my law school classmates - who was living on Oahu - said he was thinking about buying an ocean front home - and the last place you could find one under $150K - was on Kauai. Fairly modest style - nothing like the estates being built today - but you were ocean/beachfront.

He/they bought a nice place out at Hawaii Kai/Oahu instead - and made out very well, but nothing like if he had picked up an ocean front place on the Garden Isle.
Tomsd is offline  
Jan 30th, 2013, 06:54 PM
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I'm going to be in Kauai late June through late July and would like to know more about the music festival you mentioned you were playing at July 10-14.

kimfromaustin is offline  
Jan 31st, 2013, 12:12 AM
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Like everywhere else real estate is higher than it was back in the day ... but the things I'm looking at are wayyyy down from 5 or 6 years ago. When I started staying at Sealodge the tiny one-bedroom condos were going for $749K; the 2-br units were around $950K. Now, the primo 1-bedrooms are around $400K -- with one that is set farther back and doesn't have great views -- carrying an asking price of $289K !!! I saw some beautiful 2-bedroom units with good oceanfront views at Ali'i Kai for under $500 - $600K.

Unfortunately, I am hopelessly in love (or is it lust?) with a 2 bedroom unit at Pali Ke Kua with drop dead OMG views and no expense spared. But it's a leasehold--and that's something I won't do. If it were fee simple it would be around $1 million. The problem is that nothing under a million comes close to this place. Damn! I'd better go write a hit song!

Speaking of which ... Kim, the music festival info is at It made me fall in love with Hawaiian music. There are always amazing artists there from both the islands and the mainland who do shows (open to the public)--in addition to the seminars and educational/networking opportunities. The "headliner" still hasn't been announced. It's an awesome event.

And FYI, today was PERFECT.
Songdoc is offline  
Jan 31st, 2013, 07:45 AM
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Yo Songdoc: We all have different takes - but IMO - not all leasehold deals are necessarily bad. I think it's an amalgam (like that $20 word? ) of functions - such as how much you want to enjoy a particular place, how many years are left on the lease, what kind of financing, if any, plus as you noted - the difference in the price for the lease v. buying a full ownership/fee simple place

There might also be some tax advantages in a leasehold deal?

On a much smaller basis - when we bought our 2 BR timeshare at the Cliffs in '86 - it was on leased land - but the Timeshare Owners Association eventually bought the fee from the land owner, and you had the option of purchasing the fee for a grand or so - or continuing lease payments of $50 a year or some such.

Any idea who owns the land at the Pali Ke Kua?
Tomsd is offline  
Jan 31st, 2013, 08:13 AM
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I can't imagine what the tax advantage would be - I'm not even sure a lender would lend on a leasehold, would they? I do know that in Newport Beach and in Foster City, as well as many places in Hawaii, many leaseholds (those in Newport were held by the Irvine Company and those in Foster City were held by the original developer, I think a lot of the Hawaii leaseholds were originally owned by Dole) eventually expired and it cost the owners of the leaseholds a pretty penny when time came to negotiate extensions/purchases. I'm another one who would never buy a leasehold.

Songdoc, the reason you're not buying is the same reason we don't own a place in Lake Tahoe. We could never decide between the lake and the mountains so we never bought. Stupid!!
sf7307 is offline  
Feb 6th, 2013, 06:50 AM
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Stopped by to see what's going on at the h*llhole.

Kal--sorry you had cold weather, but guessing it's better than the year that we had all rain.

Songdoc--you kill me. Travelling to all these wonderful places and constantly visiting Sea lodge..I am a little envious. Looking forward to the trip report. Can't imagine seeing the whales! What a bonus!

Icee2--Hope you enjoy your "0" birthday..I won't tell anyone that it's not the one that has a "4" in front of it.

For me, probably have to wait another year for my 9th visit..trying to work in a quick Mother's day trip this year. My husband has golfed in an outing the past few years during that time, just not sure it will work for me to go this year. (little one is school, etc.) Darn, my DH will proabably have his 12 visit if he goes..I need to catch up!

PS--Any of you watch Hawaii Life on HGTV? It has seemed like prices have gone down, especially in Princeville. I am still about 600K short though!
gmac is offline  
Feb 6th, 2013, 08:33 AM
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Any of you watch Hawaii Life on HGTV?
Oh #ellhole yeah!
We drove by the little (maybe 900 sf) one bedroom house located just on the fringe of Kapaatown several times and drooled.

We kept the "Kauai Kold" in it's proper perspective everytime we rcvd pix from our realtives with pix of their dash board/iPhone temps of 4 degrees in ORE and 25 degrees in Newcastle. Now THAT'S cold!
Kal is offline  
Feb 6th, 2013, 08:47 AM
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SF7: Yes, there is financing available for leaseholds - or there certainly used to be - and the possible tax advantage could be if you considered it a depreciable asset - say 20 years left on the lease - and wrote off 1/20th every year, but I would want to consult a Tax Attorney/CPA for that.

As for Dole - they came later - as the leaseholds in Hawaii traditionally came mainly from the "Big 5" - and their trusts - which were in no small part the companies/descendants of the "Missionary" families that first came to Hawaii and founded the Sugar Cane companies, etc. They were Castle & Cooke, Alexander & Baldwin, C. Brewer & Co., American Factors (now Amfac) and Theo H. Davies & Co..


Today - the Fed Govt and state of Hawaii own the most land - and Bishop's estate is still one of the largest private landholders (one of my law school classmates handled a number of the Bishop Estate transactions) - and others - such as the Robinson family (whom my old boss enjoyed fishing for trout with while he was The Coast Guard officer on Kauai after WWII) - still have a lot of land on Kauai - and believe the Robinsons also owned Niihau at one time, and of course, there is the Parker Ranch on the Big Island.

Here is one list of the current 10 largest landowners.
Tomsd is offline  
Feb 6th, 2013, 12:57 PM
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gmac: iceeu2 is busted, I was going through posts and stumbled upon an older post from iceeu2 about a certain birthday dinner. I promise, iceeu2, on the Kauai red dirt that I will keep your secret...!

"Any of you watch Hawaii Life on HGTV?" I love and hate Hawaii Life all at the same time. I love seeing glimpses of Kauai and the other islands but I hate it because it is torture and I'm envious of those that get to live there!

Hawaii Life is to blame for Kauai being found out...
I've only been taking trips since 2007 so perhaps some of the elite (all of you that have spent more time than my 4 trips) can comment as to how true this may be.
For example, I know more tourist aren't to blame for the high airline tickets but this upcoming trip is over $1000 for tickets!! We've never paid that much for tickets and the plane is almost full! Also, although cliche, we always rent a convertible and several companies are already sold out. We also paid more than we ever have for our car rental.
What's going many people are flocking to our island!!
louistraveler5 is offline  
Feb 6th, 2013, 01:51 PM
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Airlines are cutting flights/code sharing etc, to make sure the flights are full. I do know that. The prices are high, they were that price last year, guessing fuel prices are big factor. Also have been reading that tourism in Hawaii is booming, mostly non-Americans, that could be driving the prices and availability up.

Hawaii Life is to blame for Kauai being found out
And, Icee2 is busted!!
gmac is offline  
Feb 6th, 2013, 03:26 PM
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Yes...icee is quite busted...
Kal is offline  
Feb 6th, 2013, 07:03 PM
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Wow. I look away for one day and there are all these comments!
I'm grieving as my trip comes to a close . (sniff, sniff) It has been sooooo wonderful. Tomorrow I'll be cast out of paradise. (But the good news is that next week I'll be in Europe!!!)

Re: airfares ... I've been doing a lot of poking around because I'm thinking of returning to Kauai in April and flying from Honolulu to Brisbane Australia. (I'll be working for seven weeks throughout Australia and NZ.) The point is that I found really cheap airfares from Nashville to HNL. It might be wayyy cheaper in this instance to fly to HNL, stay a day or two, then continue to Kauai, and return to HNL when it's time to fly out. I'm still researching.

Re: leaseholds ... my personality (and finances!) are such that no matter how much I love the place (and I do!!!) I won't spend almost half a million dollars for the right to pay rent for the next twenty-seven years--without knowing how much that rent would be--and with the full knowledge that at the end of the lease it is a definite possibility that my half a million dollars might be worth zero. The current lease is $800/month--but it will go up in 2015, 2025, and 2035. At least with a mortgage you know what your payments will be--and they won't go up. I could say "It's worth $479K and $800/month to live the dream" --but what if that $800/month goes to $1500, then $2500/month?

My fears are that in my old age if I needed to sell, or to take a home equity loan in ten or fifteen years that it would be impossible. (This place is a showplace and they haven't been able to sell it in the past nine months because of it being a leasehold.)

I'd rather keep looking until I find a fee simple place that I love -- or at least really like -- and hope that the investment will appreciate, which is something that is not going to happen with a leasehold.

FYI, I'm really just doing research at this point. If I found a place I couldn't live without I might buy it and rent it when I'm not using it. But I probably can't move to paradise full-time for around 2 - 3 more years.

I never heard of Hawaii Life. I guess I'm about to have a new addiction.
Songdoc is offline  
Feb 8th, 2013, 06:55 AM
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Songdoc, you're back......the only way to ease the pain is to book the Sealodge again and start looking at flights...! I'm sure DP is glad to have you back!

Hawaii Life was on last night but it was a rerun. They show reruns on Thurs night at 10 & 10:30pm central time. I just checked the HGTV website and it says Hawaii Life new episodes air on Sunday at 8:30pm central time.

Re: airfares-- I check the airline websites everyday. Yesterday I checked first thing in the morning on United and there a flight from Austin to San Francisco then onto Lihue for $883. This trip DH & I are going with my brother and his fiancee so we did the fare lock for 72 hours. I checked this morning and the flight went back up. As for flying into HNL and staying a few days...I was thinking, by the time you add the cost of hotel for the couple of days and the inter-island flight, that money could be put towards going straight to Kauai.

Have a great time in Europe...I hope you make it back to Kauai in April and I'll be a month behind you! Can't wait to read the new report!
louistraveler5 is offline  
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