Southwests Inaugural Flight

Southwest Airlines had their inaugural flight to Maui from Oakland on Sunday, April 7th. The first departure flight is schedule for today from Kahului back to Oakland. Starting on Wednesday, flights will increase to two flights per day in each direction.

Travelers departing the aircraft were greeted with lei’s, goodie bags, and food! Passengers described the crew as welcoming and the flight entertaining. Maui singer and songwriter Lily Meola was on board and played a few songs for the 175 passengers.

A special blessing was done on the aircraft after the passengers had disembarked. A lolo ana ceremony, traditionally done on new canoes,  was done by Kumu Kapono Kamaunu and Ua Aloha Maji. The ceremony is meant to bring a connection between the pilots and crew to the land.

Service on Southwest to Maui from San Jose will begin at the end of May. Dates for service from Sacramento, San Diego, and Lihue will be announced in the future.

Surf Advisory

High surf advisory is in effect until 6:00 am Friday along the north-facing shores of Maui and north-west facing shores of Molokai. This comes after high surf caused flooding and park closures on Sunday.

Although parks have been cleaned up and reopened, a new swell is coming in causing the advisory. Beachgoers should be aware of hefty waves and dangerous currents. Waves may reach between 15 and 20 feet along north shores and 10 to 14 feet along west shores.

For those planning a trip to the beach, be sure to check the weather advisory for any updates.

Prices Rise As Inventory Declines

Median prices for both homes and condominiums rose for the month of February while inventory and sales declined. Median home prices increased 15.4%  to $790,000 and median condo prices rose 11.8 percent to $524,500. These stats were released by Realtors Association of Maui.

Closed sales for February homes were down 19.4% to 79 homes. Closed condo sales were down 3.2% to 120. Kihei was the city with the most homes sold, with Wailuku and Kahului close behind. Closed condo sales also saw Kihei with the most units sold with Napili/Kahana/Honokowai and Wailuku next.

Maui’s market was on trend with the rest of the nation showing a decrease in closed sales. Potential homeowners will likely take advantage the remainder of the year with interest rates being more stable then 2018’s unreliable changing rates.

As always, contact the Hansen Ohana with any and all of your real estate needs!

Angel Award Presented

Congratulations to Anne-Marie Forsythe the recipient of the Hui No’eau Visual Arts Center’s Angel Award. The award was presented to Forsythe during the Art Affair event that took place in February.

Forsythe has been a leader in arts education throughout the community. After starting at Hui as a registrar 13 years ago, she is now deputy director. She has implemented programs that include field trips for school age children, and generating hundreds of new visiting artists from around the world. Forsythe gets her greatest since of accomplishment seeing the youth field trips at Hui. Much of her efforts have been towards Maui’s keiki having access to visual arts.

Congratulations again Anne-Marie on your well deserved accomplishment!

Makawao Steak House Closes

Members of the upcountry community were deeply saddened at the closure of Makawao Steak House. The restaurant closed its doors Sunday after a two-year financial loss. The restaurant had been in business for more then 40 years.

Makawao Steak House was originally owned by the Eneim family. It started as a store, but was converted to a restaurant to accommodate the theater next door. The hope in the community is that whomever is the new owner will keep the Makawao Steak House tradition.

Many have taken to the Makawao Steak House Facebook page sharing memories, favorite dishes, and sending well wishes. The restaurant will be truly missed.