Big Island Concierge Auction – Conservation and Legacy Lands Opportunity

Hawaii Life frequently partners with Sothebyʻs Concierge Auctions to sell unique properties across Hawaiʻi. “Pali Kai,” the 398-acre Hawaii Island land property going to auction is for me a rare offering as it is a legacy lands property with strong conservation values making it a candidate for working with our land trust partners on conservation easements post-purchase.

Listed for $65 million, the auction on this South Kona property begins next week November 10 through November 17th. It is selling with no reserve.

Pali Kai going to auction

What are Conservation Values and Conservation Easements?

When I talk about potential for conservation easements, we are not looking at the state land use designation as all oceanfront parcels will have some portion in conservation district. We are looking specifically for what are accepted as “conservation values.” As I wrote in this early blog post about properties that qualify for our conservation and legacy lands portfolio:

Within the field of conservation and historic preservation, legacy lands and historic properties are identified by ecological, social, and cultural values such as:

  • the presence of endemic or endangered species;
  • critical components of an ecosystem such as watershed or marine coastal land;
  • significance to local cultural practice, historically or present;
  • important agricultural resources;
  • the ability of a significant place and its stories to provide a link between the past and present generations.

An owner who were to donate conservation easements to a qualifying land trust or other non-profit organization could potentially receive federal tax benefits.

Beach at Pali Kai

Conservation Values Associated with the Pali Kai Property

With a large undeveloped parcel in this South Kona location, we would expect ecosystem values. In this location, we would also expect to find significant features of cultural and archeological importance, given the proximity to Puʻuhonua O Honaunau National Historical Park. Fortunately, seller has archeological reports from 2017-2018 that enumerate sites and features associated with six areas studied from near the top of the property to near the ocean.

Pali Kai Archeological Summary

Each of the surveyed areas contained multiple sites and features. For example, in what is shown above as Project 1255, a total of 35 sites and 389 features were identified. These included 311 terraces, 24 pavement, 13 platform, 12 enclosure, 7 walled terrace, 4 modified outcrop, 4 walls, 3 alignments, 3 filled crevices, 3 lava blisters, 3 trails, 1 lava tube and 1 mortared crypt. Functionally those might have been habitation sites, burials, and ceremonial sites.

Of course, other areas of the almost 400 acres would be free of features of archeological interest, which would make this 13-parcel offering suitable as a legacy purchase for someone wanting to have a home or family compound with agricultural potential, while preserving a significant undeveloped area of historic South Kona via conservation easements.

Here is the link to register for the upcoming auction — and if you would like to discuss the conservation aspects of this offering, please donʻt hesitate to reach out.

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Ed Bringas

November 24, 2022

Need possible uses with restrictions

Beth Robinson

November 25, 2022

> Hi Ed, the property is no longer on the market, but I would be happy to chat with you if you are interested in properties with conservation potential

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