A bidding war for the iconic Waikiki Beach resort is heating up as auctioneers scramble to secure $1.5 billion to complete the world’s largest outdoor water park.
The state government is also in talks to acquire the property for public use.
“It’s been a long time coming and we’re just now getting to the point where we can actually sell it,” Waikikiki property developer, Sam’s Club owner and former Waikika Beach chief executive Tim Wilsons, told the ABC.
“Waikiki is going to be one of the iconic tourist attractions in the world, and it’s going to provide a huge boost to the community.”
The property is being marketed as a resort park by a private group led by Wilsson, who has been the world leader in Waikitias construction industry since 2003.
Wilsons said he had been seeking approval from the Government to acquire Waikits property for more than a decade, but had not been able to convince the State Government to fund the plan.
“We’ve been trying for almost five years to get the State government to back our bid,” he said.
It’s a good deal for the community and it will benefit the community in the long term.”””
I’ve just been saying to the State I don’t think we can sell it.
It’s a good deal for the community and it will benefit the community in the long term.””
If we can get the support of the State, it will be a wonderful thing for the whole community,” he added.
The government has not yet commented on the proposal.
Despite the ongoing debate, there is no sign that the Government is ready to back out of the bidding war.
State Government spokesman, James Wilson, said the Government was “open to any proposal for the sale” but would only make a decision if the winning bidder agreed to terms that would allow the State to retain its share.
“This will depend on a number of factors including how much money the winning bid is willing to pay, how long it takes to sell the property and whether it is a good value,” Mr Wilson said.
Auctioneer Sam’s Clubs auctioneer, Sam Williams, is bidding to buy Waikitas property, with the winning bidders expecting to pay $1bn.
The property will be part of the state’s planned $9.5-billion “Reservoir” water park on the northern side of Waikita Bay, which would be built on the site of the old Waikihinui River and extend to the east.
Mr Williams has been in talks with the State for nearly two years about a possible sale.
It is believed that the sale could come as soon as next year, with Wilsones recent comments that he expects the deal to close within six months.
In a statement, the State’s Minister for Tourism, Andrew McDonald, said he was committed to the plan, which he hoped would be completed by 2020.
“I have been actively engaged in the process with Mr Wilsos, and the Government has been supportive of the plan,” Mr McDonald said.
Mr McDonald said the State would take a “significant” amount of funding to complete construction and build the water park, but said it was still expected to be completed before the end of the decade.
Waikikikis support for the plan has been well documented, with more than 100,000 people signing a petition calling for a return to the Waikis.
‘It’s going well’A spokesman for the Waipahu Waterpark Authority, which manages the Waitera Bay, said they would not be commenting on the bid.
“When the Government’s planning committee recommended this plan, it had to be considered by the Government, so it’s up to the Government now whether they’ll approve the proposal or not,” the spokesman said.
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