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Trump prize: run Waikiki tower

The Honolulu Advertiser
by Andrew Gomes

Flamboyant New York developer Donald Trump will feature a planned super-luxury Waikiki high-rise on Monday's live season finale of his reality TV show "The Apprentice."

The winner of the televised contest to become Trump's next apprentice could manage the estimated $400 million hotel and residential condominium tower slated to break ground early next year at Saratoga and Kalia roads.

Trump International Hotel and Tower Waikiki Beach Walk is one of at least two prize assignments available to the show's winner and will expose millions of viewers to the previously unconfirmed project that promises to redefine upscale accommodations in Waikiki.

"The addition of this luxury development to Waikiki Beach Walk is a testament to the attraction of our city as one of the world's most celebrated destinations," Mayor Mufi Hannemann said in a statement.

Trump and his development partner Irongate Capital of Beverly Hills, Calif., yesterday confirmed their plans for the hotel-condo with 460 units expected to sell from roughly $500,000 to more than $6 million each.

"Trump Tower will be the most luxurious development in one of the most recognized resort destinations in the world today Waikiki Beach," Trump said in a statement. "My partners and I look forward to setting a new standard for luxury in Waikiki."

The 350-foot tower is slated to begin sales in late summer or early fall. Construction is expected to be complete by early 2009.

The Advertiser first reported Trump's then-tentative role in the planned high-rise a year ago as part of the Waikiki Beach Walk redevelopment project by Outrigger Enterprises. Officials with the Trump Organization previously had not confirmed Trump's involvement.

Yesterday, Irongate unveiled details of the project, and said it would be featured on "The Apprentice," which is in its fifth season on NBC.

Irongate principal Adam Fisher in an interview said a crew from the show was in town filming footage of the project last month, and that the winner of "The Apprentice" could elect to be project manager overseeing the development for Trump.

Fisher said the project is being designed for residential and hotel use, with about 325 hotel units and 135 residences.

"It's consistent with a five-star hotel, but with residences," he said.

Upper floors will feature larger units as big as 3,000 square feet that would be more appealing as residences. Lower floors with units as small as 500 square feet are expected to be bought largely by investors opting for the Trump Organization to manage the units as vacation rentals.

All units will have 24-hour room service, valet and porter service available. Other planned amenities include a wine cellar, library, cafe, bar, dining area, pool and an ocean-view lobby on the sixth floor.

"As the last word in luxury this project will send a message that the world's favorite resort is also a world-class place to live and play," David Carey, president and CEO of Outrigger, said in a statement. "We are proud to welcome Trump Tower to the exceptional Waikiki Beach Walk project."

Outrigger initially had planned to develop the 350-foot tower to replace several smaller hotel properties as part of its retail and hotel redevelopment project mostly along Lewers Street, but last year sold the tower site to Irongate.

Trump has developed some of the most lavish and pricey condos, and is working on several hotel-condo projects including ones in Chicago; Fort Lauderdale, Fla.; and Las Vegas, where unit prices at the Trump International Hotel & Tower Las Vegas earlier this year ranged from the $600,000s to more than $6 million.

Trump could become involved in a second real estate project in Hawai'i as part of a planned luxury beachfront hotel-condo to be developed at Ko Olina Resort & Marina by Miami-based Crescent Heights, which last month said it was in "early discussions" to partner with Trump.

The billionaire businessman's previous dealings in Hawai'i have included convincing the state to host the 1998 Miss Universe Pageant. The state and businesses contributed more than $5.3 million in money and services to Trump and the pageant organizers in return for repeated mentions and photographs of Hawai'i in the telecast.

Related Building: Trump Tower Waikiki
Related Neighborhoods:Waikiki - Central


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