Naniloa seeks funding for renovations
Major renovations have yet to begin at the Hilo Naniloa Hotel, but owners still hope to have the work finished by the end of the year, said investor Ed Olson.
Olson, a Big Island resident, said the hotel is seeking a $15 million construction loan to finance the work. Investors are contributing another $5 million.
Permit applications are also in the process of being filed with Hawaii County, he said, adding he is hoping for a 45-day turnaround.
Olson said the hotel is seeking local lenders.
“The biggest thing right now in front of us is getting a construction loan itself,” he said. “We’re putting it out to about two dozen lenders.”
Olson said the hotel sought a loan with First Hawaiian Bank but was not successful. He said the hotel’s plans are to get the funding by July.
“We are still confident we are going to be able to do it and that it will be a great hotel for Hilo,” Olson said.
WHR LLC, led by real estate developer Ed Bushor, acquired the 383-room hotel through bankruptcy in December. The owners planned significant renovations, using a marine and historical theme to remake the hotel, which has struggled for years.
The hotel had about 160 usable rooms when it was acquired, Olson said. Several since have been fixed.
“We took some of the rooms that weren’t too bad and worked on them,” he said.
Other issues, including electrical and other building code violations, have been worked on first, Olson said.
“I’d say we corrected half” of those issues, he said.
A generator used for some of the hotel’s electricity also was removed.
WHR LLC spent about $7 million acquiring the hotel and covering its defaults, Bushor said in December. He couldn’t be reached for comment Friday.
Email Tom Callis at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Rules for posting comments
Comments posted below are from readers. In no way do they represent the view of Oahu Publishing Inc. or this newspaper. This is a public forum.
Comments may be monitored for inappropriate content but the newspaper is under no obligation to do so. Comment posters are solely responsible under the Communications Decency Act for comments posted on this Web site. Oahu Publishing Inc. is not liable for messages from third parties.
IP and email addresses of persons who post are not treated as confidential records and will be disclosed in response to valid legal process.
Do not post:
- Potentially libelous statements or damaging innuendo.
- Obscene, explicit, or racist language.
- Copyrighted materials of any sort without the express permission of the copyright holder.
- Personal attacks, insults or threats.
- The use of another person's real name to disguise your identity.
- Comments unrelated to the story.
If you believe that a commenter has not followed these guidelines, please click the FLAG icon below the comment.