With Hawaii County cracking down on short term vacation rentals on the Big Island, I am getting a lot of inquiries from my 2017 blog post about bed and breakfast establishments or inns for sale.
I recently toured around the island looking at options with a buyer who specifically wants a licensed B&B or inn. With some really excellent choices available, I am splitting this review into two parts. This post focuses on three choices from Hilo to South Point, all with permits, years of history with stellar reviews, and established, repeat clientele. The next post will cover Kailua Kona and points north along the Kohala Coast.
Classic inn style: Kalaekilohana garners awards for its hospitality at South Point in Kaʻu (MLS 612303)
Hale Kai B&B at Honolii Surf Spot – Hilo
First stop on our tour of licensed bed-and-breakfast properties for sale is Hale Kai, a 5 bedroom oceanfront property just outside (Hamakua direction) of downtown Hilo.
The property includes separate living quarters for the owners on the top floors, with four bedrooms rented to guests on the bottom floor. Hale Kai is being sold as a turnkey operation, asking price $1,995,000.
Guests might take breakfast on the deck or next to the swimming pool and watch surfers or passing whales and cruise ships.
Directly above Honolii a popular surf spot, this B&B features views of Hilo Bay (MLS 606846)
The four guests suites are simply furnished with Hawaiian-themed decor and share a common indoor sitting area and lanai. They can be entered without passing through the ownerʻs level…and have access to the pool below.
Upstairs, the living, dining and kitchen areas all look out on truly panoramic ocean views. The master bedroom has a high style bathroom with a soaking tub and open shower, and the owner will wake up to sunrise and ocean views. A bonus — sweet upstairs loft bed and bath for visiting family.
Financials are available to qualified buyers…and the sellers will remain in the area to assist with the transition.
Hale Ohia – Historic Cottages and Eurostyle in Volcano Village
The Volcano House Hotel within Hawaii Volcanoes National Park only has 33 guest rooms, which means those of the 3 million annual visitors who want more than a single day to experience the Big Islandʻs top attraction often turn to short term vacation rentals in Volcano Village or in Puna district between Hilo and the Park.
The eruption of 2018 wiped out many of those Puna district rentals, and the short term vacation rental law of 2019 may effectively do the same for Volcano Village homes. That makes a property in the area with vacation rental permits a potential gold mine.
Hale Ohia Cottages – not in the MLS, but offered for sale at $2,950,000
What I love about the Hale Ohia property is that it includes multiple parcels, which allowed the current owner to begin by renovating the 1931 main house and cottage structures, add another cottage in the ’90s and still newer, Euro-style accommodations in 2015! That makes for a total of 13 bedrooms, with private baths, complimentary breakfast, and wifi.
Remember it can be chilly and foggy in Volcano, so the fireplaces are welcome, and the gardens are lush and full of birds…a unique experience for visitors to the island.
Designed specifically with a European sensibility, the newest portion of Hale Ohia at Volcano would make a great residence for the on-site manager as well.
The other advantage of this property is that it totals a little over an acre, but adjoins a very large conservation parcel so feels much more expansive and private.
Kalaekilohana – Luxury Inn at South Point
Kalaekilohana in Naʻalehu is not a bed-and-breakfast; it is permitted as a lodge and has won awards as a “small hotel.” It has a commercial kitchen, can serve dinner to guests (a B&B can only provide breakfast), and could even serve meals to the many island visitors who travel daily past the Inn on their way to visit the southernmost point (“Ka lae”) in the United States…or to hike out to the green sand beach.
Another advantage is that unlike a B&B, this property is approved for weddings and special events.
Commercial kitchen at the inn offers multiple possibilities beyond breakfast (MLS 612303)
Among the features of this property:
- Main house includes four suites plus an owners suite that could also be rented under the permit, living areas, two kitchens and a cupola where guests currently enjoy massages
- Additional farm dwelling of 1,600 sqft
- Greenhouse under construction for a farm-to-table experience
- Three acres, landscaped with native plantings
Dining room at the Inn at South Point could serve lunch or dinner beyond in-house guests
Kalaekilohana is offered for $1,599,000 and sellers might offer terms to a qualified buyer.
Which Unique Hawaii Island B&B Property is right for you?
A simple search will turn up websites, reviews, and praise for each of these vacation rental havens. Each of these three licensed properties has a true sense of place, and owners who deeply care about their homes and the quality of experience offered to their guests. They are listings in search of new stewards to carry on a legacy of hoʻokipa, hospitality that is a value not just a tourist industry cliche.
I wish to thank the owners of these properties who graciously offered permission and photos for this blog…another indication of the hospitality that has served their guests and will provide a loyal following for a new owner. Feel free to call if you are interested…none of these photos — or a few quick words — do these properties justice.