Coco Palms Resort

Kimpton Hotels Announces Partnership With Coco Palms

Kimpton Hotels Announced as Lead in Coco Palms Redevelopment
June 12, 2024

Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants has announced a partnership with Kauai’s historic Coco Palms Resort to establish the first Kimpton location in Hawaii. The project, owned by Reef Capital Partners and operated by Highgate, will see the resort undergo a restoration to be completed by 2026.

Coco Palms, located in the Wailua area of Kauai, was a premier destination during Hollywood’s Golden Era, frequented by celebrities such as Elvis Presley, Rita Hayworth, and Gene Autry. The property has been in a state of neglect since it was damaged by Hurricane Iniki in 1992.

A restoration of the derelict property has been planned for several years, but local opposition concerned about the loss of Native Hawaiian historicity at the site has stymied efforts for redevelopment. A community group has unsuccessfully lobbied for a community cultural center to be built at the site, considered sacred by Native Hawaiians. However, with legal issues apparently resolved in favor of the resort, the redevelopment is moving forward, at least for now.

New Coco Palms

The reimagined resort will offer 350 accommodations across three low-rise hotel structures and cottages. Amenities will include a 15-acre coconut grove for activities such as meditation, movie nights, and wedding ceremonies. Guests will also have access to an onsite spa, three outdoor swimming pools, a rooftop bar, a pool bar, and a shoreline restaurant. Additionally, the resort will continue the traditional evening torch-lighting ceremony. An onsite cultural center and museum dedicated to Kauai’s history and native culture aims to preserve the historical and cultural integrity of the property.

Leanne Harwood, SVP, Managing Director for Luxury & Lifestyle Americas at IHG Hotels & Resorts, stated, “We are excited to establish our presence in Hawaii with Coco Palms, A Kimpton Resort. This reimagined resort will welcome both visitors and the local community with culturally respectful experiences within a boutique luxury setting.”

Jon Day, Chief Financial Officer at Reef Capital Partners, commented, “It’s a privilege to bring the first Kimpton resort to Hawaii. IHG shares our belief in the importance of preserving the history and culture of this site. They are committed to sharing its legacy with the world.”

Kauai, known as the “Garden Isle,” offers numerous natural attractions for the redeveloped property. The Wailua River, adjacent to Coco Palms, is ideal for kayaking and boat journeys to the Fern Grotto, a natural rock cavern covered in ferns. Visitors can also enjoy nearby beaches, hiking trails, waterfalls, helicopter sightseeing, scuba diving, snorkeling, boating, and fishing. The resort is conveniently located five miles from Lihue Airport.

Coco Palms New