2014 Merrie Monarch Festival in Hilo

Miss Aloha Hula Competition 2013

Miss Aloha Hula Competition 2013, Photo Courtesy Merrie Monarch Festival

The Merrie Monarch Festival began in 1963 as a way to preserve and promote the art of hula and Hawaiian culture.  Now, over 50 years later, it has grown into a premier event.  This spring thousands of people from Hawaii and around the world will come to the Big Island to celebrate Hawaiian history and culture by watching dancers display their skills in both ancient and modern hula.

The week-long festival begins on April 20th and runs through to April 26th.  Most of the activities during the festival such as art exhibitions, musical entertainment, and craft fairs are free to the public. However, tickets are required for the three-day hula competition.  Below you’ll find the highlights of this year’s festival!

Community Hoʻolauleʻa  (April 20th from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm at the Afook Chinen Civic Auditorium):  This is a great opportunity to watch hula performances by our local hālau.  The event is free of charge and there will be Hawaiian music and local fare.

Merrie Monarch Invitational Hawaiian Arts Fair (April 23rd through April 26th 9:00 am to 4:00 pm at the Afook Chinen Civic Auditorium):  Come by to see the finest Hawaiian arts handcrafted by local artisans.  You’ll also be able to view demonstrations of lei making, coconut weaving, pahu drum making, and more.

Wednesday Night Hōʻike Performances (April 23rd at 5:45 pm at the Edith Kanakaʻole Stadium):  Last year attendees were required to have a ticket to this event.  But this year you can watch this evening hula performance free of charge.  You’ll want to come early.  Seats are available on a first-come-first-serve basis.

Merrie Monarch Festival

Photo Courtesy of Merrie Monarch Festival

Miss Aloha Hula Competition (April 24th at 5:45 pm at the Edith Kanakaʻole Stadium):  The individual competition for the title of “Miss Aloha Hula” is a must see.   Contestants will exhibit hula kahiko, hula ʻauana, and oli (chanting).

Group Hula Kahiko (April 25th at 5:54 pm at the Edith Kanakaʻole Stadium):  During this hula exhibition you will be able to see groups performing in ancient styles of dance.

Free Mid-day Entertainment:  Throughout the week (Monday- Friday) there will be free entertainment at the Hawaii Naniloa Volcanoes Resort starting at noon and at the Hilo Hawaiian Hotel starting at 1:00 pm.

Merrie Monarch Royal Parade (April 26th starting at 10:30 am in downtown Hilo):  The festival will end with a parade through Hilo.  Bring the whole family to enjoy this entertaining extravaganza.

For more information and a full schedule visit the Merrie Monarch website at, www.merriemonarch.com.

Posted in Big Island, Big Island Lifestyle, Big Island Real Estate News, Community Events, Featured, General, Hilo, MacArthur Sotheby's International Realty | , , , , , , Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Happy Aloha Friday! Here’s Your Big Island Report for Kailua Kona.

Kailua Kona Big Island Report_April_blog


269942 Gayle

MLS 269942 offered at $1,199,000

Exceptional quality was very important to the seller of this wonderful home with the perfect single story floor plan. Two guest suites are located at south end of the home with the master suite privately located at the north end, and a fabulous great room in between with a lava stone fire place, tiled floors and ceilings that seem to reach to the sky. The spacious tiled lanai over-looking the pool also enjoys spectacular views of the ocean, coastline and Kona’s glorious sunsets. The gourmet kitchen opens onto the dining area and features a sit up bar with granite lined counters and abundant storage. Every room enjoys ocean views. This property is situated on 1.59 acres of land, with room to plant additional trees and a garden. The property has existing mature fruit trees already in place that consists of oranges, tangerines, lemons, lime and avocados. The decadent master suite features a Jacuzzi Whirlpool tub, separate tiled walk-in shower and a large walk-in closet. Click here to see complete listing!

Posted in Big Island, Big Island Real Estate, Featured, General, Kailua - Kona | Leave a comment

Happy Aloha Friday. Here’s your Big Island Report for the Beautiful Up Country!


Up Country Big Island April Report_online

A note on statistics. Sometimes we see aberrations, or perhaps our dataset is too small thus exaggerating the results. For example, this month we see a 100% increase in median sales prices for Up Country condos.  On face value that sounds incredible, but in reality, the Up Country has very few condo listings so selling one this month where you sold zero last month creates a 100% increase. Numbers don’t lie but they may not tell the whole story, and that’s where an agent who knows the ins-and-outs of the market can make all the difference.

The takeaway for the Up Country market is that properties are value priced when compared to the Kohala Coast and the greater Kailua Kona area, and though inventory is tightening in the Up Country, it’s still an opportunity market.


267643 RKLovely home in the lower section of the Meadows in Kohala Ranch and situated on a flag lot for ultimate privacy. This is the lowest priced home in Kohala Ranch and is in great condition and fully appointed with lots of room for expansion of the home, future pool, etc. The front door opens to a foyer with immediate ocean, mountain and Maui views which are expansive and unobstructed from the interior of the home and the 600+ square feet of lanai. The kitchen opens to a sunny dining area and living room with fireplace. There are two oversized master suites with large baths and custom closets and a 3rd bedroom and full bath. Kohala Ranch is a 4,000+/- Equestrian Ranch with riding trails and a polo field. Only minutes to world class beaches and the amenities of the Gold Coast, two college preparatory schools and some of the best Farmer’s Markets in the state.

More on this ‘Deal of the Week’ at http://www.bigislandreale.com/267643-59-129-Ka-Nani-Pl-Kohala-Ranch

Posted in Big Island, Big Island Lifestyle, Big Island Real Estate, Big Island Real Estate News, Featured, General, Kohala Ranch, MacArthur Sotheby's International Realty, North Kohala, Waimea | Leave a comment

Best Surf Spots on the Big Island | Homes For Sale

Pohoiki Beach

Pohoiki Beach, Photo by Hawaiian Sea

Have you ever dreamed of rolling out of bed, grabbing your surfboard, and catching a wave before breakfast?  The Big Island offers some of the best surfing in Hawaii and many of our properties are only a few feet away.  Where are these surf spots you ask?  Well, if you ask a local you’ll probably get the runaround.  The best surf spots are well kept secrets.  However, we’ve compiled a list of some great places to catch a wave.

Honolii Surf Spot

This surf break provides some of the most consistently rideable waves. Located on the Big Island’s east coast just north of Hilo, Honolii Beach Park is popular among the local surf crowd. Unlike most surfing beaches on the Big Island, Honolii sees action all year round. In the summer, the waves are relatively calm and ideal for beginning surfers. Winter is the season for the pros, where the surf gets higher and more challenging. A county lifeguard is on duty to keep an eye on the surfers.

Nearby we have two fabulous properties for sale.  At 248 Kahoa St you’ll find an oceanfront/ riverfront estate sitting on 9.02 acres of lush tropical forest dotted with waterfalls.  This 3 bedroom / 3.5 bath home represents the authentic, Old Hawaii at its best.  Stroll from your front porch to the expansive lawn and out into your huge yard where you have your choice of jumping into the water of the open ocean or the Honolii River.   Swim, boat, kayak, or paddle board from a rare access ramp for launching into the river.

248 Kahoa St in South Hilo

248 Kahoa St in South Hilo

Not far away at 178 Kahoa St we have a 2 bedroom/ 2 bath home on the Honolii River with unobstructed views of the ocean, river, and valley.  Surrounded by lush tropical jungle foliage, the setting is one of an isolated and remote hideaway while being only 15 minutes from downtown Hilo.  If you’re looking for a private getaway with surfing only steps away, this is the home for you.

Waipio Valley Surf spot

Brock Stratton, co-owner of Kona Boys Surf Shop, calls the black-sand surf spot off of Waipio Beach one of the most beautiful on the Big Island.  Largely undeveloped and surrounded by “Jurassic Park” like mountains, the valley is truly one of the most breathtaking areas on the Big Island.  Still, you won’t want to take on the waves unless you are an experienced surfer.  While this area has consistently great surf year-round, people should be aware of the rocks and strong undertow.

In the area, at Waipio Valley Lots, we have 2.5 acres of lush tropical landscape.  The property includes two homes totaling approximately 4,000 square feet of living space with 5 bedrooms and 4 full bathrooms.  Foot paths lead you to nearby waterfalls, the taro patches, and the famous black sand beach. You may never have to purchase another piece of fruit in your lifetime as the land has exotic fruits trees of all varieties.

Waipio Valley, Photo by Sean Dreilinger

Waipio Valley, Photo by Sean Dreilinger

Pohoiki Surf Spot

Located in the Puna District, Pohoiki Beach is not far from the Ahalanui Park thermal baths.  There are three main breaks.  The first bay is perfect for beginners just learning how to surf.  The second bay is a good spot for intermediate surfers.  And the last bay is one of the Big Island’s monsters.  Waves can reach up to 15 feet at the last break and should only be taken on by those who have a lot of experience.  This is a great spot to spend the morning surfing and then head over to the hot springs for a dip after.

Close by, at Kehena Beach Estates Lot # 60, we have land for sale which would be the perfect place to build a dream home.  The famed Kehena black sand beach would be right outside your window and the view stretches along the coastline and out to sea.  Spinner dolphins, surfers, rainbows, and seasonal whales are all a part of the normal seascape along with spectacular sunrises.

 12-7213 Moana Kai Pali St, Puna

12-7213 Moana Kai Pali St, Puna

Also in Kehena Beach Estates we have a wonderful property at 12-7239 Moana Kai Pali St.  This 2 bedroom/ 1.5 bath home is surrounded by mature tropical plants which offers privacy and relaxation. The custom built terrace has a 180 degree view of the ocean and the wrap around lanai is a perfect place to watch dolphins swim. Only a short walk to Kehena black sand beach, this home is a perfect place to feel the calm serenity Puna is known for.

So what are you waiting for?  Grab your board and come try out these primo surf spots.  If you’d like more information about properties near surf breaks or our other listings, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us at, MacArthur Sotheby’s International Realty.

Posted in Big Island, Big Island Lifestyle, Big Island Real Estate, Big Island Real Estate News, Featured, General, Hilo, Puna | , , , , , , Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

MacArthur’s Big Island Report: Kohala Coast, April 2014

Hawaii, Big Island, Hawaii Property for Sale, Hawaiii Real Estate, Big Island Real Estate



267643 RK

 MLS 267643:  This is a lovely home in the lower section of the Meadows in Kohala Ranch and is situated on a flag lot for the ultimate in privacy. This fabulous home is now the lowest priced residence in Kohala Ranch; it’s in great condition and is fully appointed with lots of room for expansion of the home or future pool. For more information on this great opportunity click on the following link http://www.bigislandreale.com/267643-59-129-Ka-Nani-Pl-Kohala-Ranch

Posted in Big Island, Big Island Real Estate, Big Island Real Estate News, Featured, General, Hualalai Resort, Island Homes, Kohala Coast, Kohala Ranch, Kona By The Sea, Kukio, Mauna Lani Resort, North Kohala, Puako, Real Estate News, Waikoloa Resort | Leave a comment

MacArthur Sotheby’s International Realty announces our new weekly Big Island Reports!

March 2014 Kailua Kona 540px

At MacArthur Sotheby’s International Realty, we strive to supply our clients with the most up-to-date market data. Starting with this issue we will publish a new report each week showcasing a different part of the island: the greater Kailua Kona area, the Kohala Coast, the Up Country, and the Hamakua-Hilo side. These reports will provide a quick snapshot of real estate market. Also included are our Big 6 Picks of area properties and our Deal of the Week. Statistics are gathered from the Hawaii Information Service (HIS) and are based on the previous month and the last 12 months. The median sales prices are deemed reliable but not guaranteed by HIS. As we’ll be providing four reports covering nine districts of the island, we are combining similar communities in the greater area for each report.


MLS 253330

MLS 253330

Reduced by $129,100, this 4/3 oceanfront condo has plenty of space and is currently a successful vacation rental. This fully air-conditioned residence offers shoreline living just steps away from the beautiful blue ocean. A fabulous location on Alii Drive and priced to sell makes it our Kailua Kona Deal of the week. Click here for more information. 

MLS 253330 is now offered at $769,900. Call Kathy J. Christiansen, R(B) at 808.896.9000 for more information.

Posted in Big Island, Big Island Lifestyle, Big Island Real Estate, Big Island Real Estate News, Featured, General, Kailua - Kona, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

MacArthur Sotheby’s International Realty Congratulates our 2013 Company Top Producer – Rebecca Keliihoomalu, R(B).

MacArthur Sotheby’s International Realty, the Island of Hawaii’s #1 Luxury Real Estate Agency, Congratulates our 2013 Company Top Producer, Rebecca Keliihoomalu, R(B).

Rebecca Keliihoomalu, Senior VP, R(B), MacArthur Sotheby's International Realty

Rebecca Keliihoomalu, Senior VP, R(B), MacArthur Sotheby’s International Realty

Rebecca Keliihoomalu, R(B), Senior VP at MacArthur Sotheby’s International Realty is consistently one of our Top Producers and in 2013 Ms. Keliihoomalu lead the way with record breaking sales in a Big Island market that is definitely on the rise.

What’s been called ‘The Great Recession’ hit Hawaii hard and real estate was one of the hardest hit industries. Property values dropped as much as 40% in Hawaii, flooding the market with foreclosures that brought the market to a virtual standstill. To survive as a real estate agent during those days was a testament to one’s talent, experience and client loyalty, strengths that Rebecca Keliihoomalu has in abundance.

That Rebecca Keliihoomalu is MacArthur Sotheby’s International Realty’s 2013 Top Producer is no surprise. Before starting her Big Island realty career in 2003, she was a successful business woman in the fashion industry whose talents included multiple store ownership and management, product development, design and international marketing. Her business acumen served her well in the transition to real estate where she quickly established herself as a Top Producer. Now an industry veteran, Rebecca is recognized as a market expert by such respected organizations as the Wall Street Journal and Hawaii Business Magazine, as well as being featured on the HGTV network.

When asked about the state of the Big Island’s real estate market, Rebecca gives sound advise for those looking for a home or investment.

“Over the last year [2013] we’ve seen a substantial amount of recovery on the Big Island with sales of single family residences jumping up over 16%. We aren’t expecting that kind jump for 2014 – our current predictions are for around 5% increase of sales along with a slow but steady rise in property values as our inventory continues to tighten.”

 “We also have to remember how far we fell in the recession. Each sale is like dressing a wound that’s slowly healing and getting better each day. I think it’s still very much a buyer’s market and I’m advising all my clients to commit now. The longer you wait, the more likely you are to face higher interest rates, higher prices and less inventory. Waiting now only gives you less buying power with fewer choices.”

Two Luxury Side by Side Homes in Kohala by the Sea Offered as One Sale. MLS 267243

MacArthur Sotheby’s International Realty is proud to recognize Rebecca Keliihoomalu as our Company Top Producing agent for 2013. For more information on the Big Island Luxury Real Estate market, Rebecca Keliihoomalu, R(B,) can be reached at rebecca@macarthurhawaii.com or by calling her at 808.895.1156.

MacArthur Sotheby’s International Realty is a boutique Hawaii real estate company offering the best in customer service with the Sotheby’s global marketing reach of over 600 offices in 46 countries. MacArthur serves the Big Island with offices on the Kohala Coast at Kings’ Shops (808) 633-8646, in Kailua Kona at the Keauhou Shopping Center at (808) 331-3131, and in Waimea at Parker Ranch Square at (808) 885-8885. It’s also the exclusive sponsor and administrator of the popular ‘Big Island – Hawaii’ Facebook page, showcasing the Big Island lifestyle and adding another 85,000 members to MacArthur’s global audience.

Posted in Big Island, Big Island Lifestyle, Big Island Real Estate, Big Island Real Estate News, Featured, General, Hamakua Coast, Holualoa, Kohala Coast, Kohala Ranch, MacArthur Sotheby's International Realty, Mauna Lani Resort, North Kohala, Puako, Real Estate News, Uncategorized, Waikoloa Resort, Waikoloa Village, Waimea | Leave a comment

How the Big Island Measures Up

Old Government Road, Waipio Valley

Old Government Road, Waipio Valley

Did you know that Hawaii’s state fish is the humuhumunukunukuapuaa or the reef triggerfish? Were you aware that Hawaii is the only place in the United States where vanilla and cacao beans are grown? Have you heard the the world’s largest astronomy observatory is located on the summit of Mauna Kea? There are lots of fun facts about Hawaii which people from the mainland don’t usually know, and some of the most interesting ones have to do with land.

The Big Island is the youngest of the Hawaiian islands and its volcanic activity adds new oceanfront land every year. With 4,028 square miles of beautiful landscape the Big Island is close to double the size of all the other Hawaiian Islands combined. Having so much land at its disposal you’d think it would be the most populated. However, when you look at the stats below you’ll see it is actually the most rural of all the islands.

In 1961, the Hawaii’s State Land Use Commission divided up the use of land in the state of Hawaii into four categories: rural, urban, agricultural, and conservation lands. Over the years land reclassification and new laws have changed the original designated amounts, but not by much. These days 48% of Hawaii is considered conservation land, 47% is agricultural, about 5 percent is designated urban, and about 0.2% is considered rural.

View From Home For Sale In Hamakua Area

View From Home For Sale In Hamakua Area

The Big Island has the second largest population (Oahu has the largest) with 186,738 people, but only 2% of its land is considered ‘urban.’  The rest of the island is populated with wildlife, tropical plants, and vistas you would never see with a towering building in the way. So, out of all the Hawaiian islands, the one where you are going to see the least amount of concrete and the most serene ocean views is the Big Island. How’s that for a fun fact?

Have you been thinking about purchasing land on the Big Island? This is the time to invest in your future dream home. If you’d like more information about land on the Big Island or details about our luxury properties, please get in touch with us at, MacArthur Sotheby’s International Realty.

Posted in Big Island, Big Island Lifestyle, Big Island Real Estate, Big Island Real Estate News, Featured, General, MacArthur Sotheby's International Realty | , , , , , Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

New Flights to Hawaii | Chinese Tourism Increase

Big Island Sunset

Big Island Sunset, Photo by George Chang

In January, Air China opened a new nonstop-route from Beijing to Honolulu.  The three-times weekly flight will not only connect China to Hawaii, but will also make it easier for European and Middle Eastern travelers to reach the islands.  China Eastern Airlines also recently opened up new flights from Shanghai to Honolulu and Hawaiian Airlines is slated to start its own nonstop service to Beijing this coming April.

Chinese tourism is coming our way and its effects are going to be seen on the Hawaiian economy sooner rather than later. While the Japanese tourism market slowly came to Hawaii over the last 20 years, the Chinese market is going to grow much quicker.

In a report recently issued by the Hawaii Tourism Authority, Chinese visitors spent $127 million in 2010, $178 million in 2011, and $277 million last year. While those numbers can’t compare to the $2.7 billion Japanese tourist spent in 2012, they do show a substantial increase in Chinese visitor spending. With the new flight routes opening up between China and Hawaii we are sure to see Chinese spending increase even more this year.

Which islands are these Chinese tourists frequenting?  According to the Hawaii Tourism Authority from January to October, 2013 most Chinese visitors stayed on Oahu. The Big Island came in second, with Maui and Kauai trailing in third and fourth.

airport big island

Arriving on the Big Island, Photo by Regan Buker

This may all change in the next few years as the Big Island’s State and County Officials work with the federal government to reopen the international inspection facility at the Kona International Airport. The Big Island’s inability to have direct flights from Japan and China has had an impact on its tourism industry since the international facility closed in 2010. Reopening the facility could go a long way in opening the Chinese tourism market to the Big Island. However, for now there is no clear date when the facility will reopen.

Has all this talk of flying to the Big Island made you want to come visit? If you’d like more information about visiting the Big Island, or details about our luxury properties, please get in touch with us at, MacArthur Sotheby’s International Realty.

Posted in Big Island Lifestyle, Big Island Real Estate News, Community Events, Featured, MacArthur Sotheby's International Realty | , , , , , Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Got Beer? | Kona Brewers Festival

Photo by John Drake

Photo by John Drake

Celebrating its 19th year, the Kona Brewers Festival, is sure to serve up some excellent ales and delightful delicacies. If you’re on the Big Island this March, you won’t want to miss this multi-day event.

What began as a festival to increase recycling awareness has now become one of the Big Island’s biggest fundraising events. Over the past eighteen year the Kona Brewers Festival has raised more than $650,000 for environmental, educational, and cultural organizations.

Wondering what events you should attend? Well, below you’ll find a schedule for March 5-8, 2014.

Annual HomeBrew Competition: (Entry Deadline March 1)  Have you been brewing beer in your bathtub?  Do you have barrels of cider in your backyard? Now is the time to enter your home brew in the Kona Brewers Festival Homebrew Competition. Anyone can enter and win the coveted Best of Show prize.  Judging will take place at Lulu’s Event Room on March 5th, 6th, and 7th.

Dining Under the Stars – A Brewers’ Pa’ina and Art Auction: (March 6)   This special dinner will take place at the Sheraton Kona Resort & Spa at Keauhou Bay from 6:00-8:00pm. Dine ocean-side on an extraordinary meal where the chefs incorporate craft beers in their recipes. From the Big-Eye Ahi and Kona Kampachi to the Imperial Braised Kuahiwi Shortribs, this is one meal you’ll not soon forget.

Photo by Mythie

Photo by Mythie

7th Annual Run for the Hops: (March 8)  At 7:30am runners will take off on a 5k/ 10k run/walk around Kona. The race is organized by Peoples Advocacy for Trails Hawaii (PATH). All proceeds will benefit non-profits working on behalf of children and the environment

Brews For The Big Rock (March 8) The main event will be held 2:30- 6:30pm at King Kamehameha’s Courtyard Kona Beach Hotel. You’ll get to enjoy 40 different types of beer brewed all over the US. You’ll get to taste island cuisine cooked up by 40 of Hawaii’s greatest chefs. Throughout the afternoon you’ll be treated to entertainment such as live music, hula, and the annual Trash Fashion Show.

Natural Artesian Water Keaau property

Natural Artesian Water Keaau property

Would you like to create your own Big Island brewery?  At the moment we have one of the few listings on the Big Island with special use permits for a brewery and bottling facility.  Our Natural Artesian Water Keaau property is the only property with enough water to service a brewery, distillery, tasting room, restaurant, visitors center, and more.

The slopes of Mauna Kea and Mauna Loa feed the Keaau aquifer almost 200 inches of pure rainwater per year. This translates to approximately 1.38 billion gallons of water per day.  These natural artesian springs deliver bountiful and pure water perfect for the next brewer starting their own brand of Big Island beer.

So, what are you waiting for? Mark your calendars for the 19th annual Kona Brewers Festival. If you’d like more information about visiting the Big Island, or would like information about one of our properties please get in touch with us at, MacArthur Sotheby’s International Realty.

Posted in Big Island, Big Island Lifestyle, Big Island Real Estate News, Community Events, Featured, Kailua - Kona | , , , , Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment