You can buy a third of a Hawaiian island for $260 million — but there’s a catch

The beaches are beautiful on Molokai.

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The beaches are beautiful on Molokai.
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Richard A. Cooke III

One-third of the island of Molokai – the fifth-largest island in Hawaii – is up for sale for $260 million.

The property, called Molokai Ranch, encompasses 55,575 acres of the island. Mark Zuckerberg had reportedly considered purchasing it back in 2015, before he ultimately settled on a 750-acre property on the North Shore of Kauai.

The land doesn’t come without restrictions, however. Its current owner, investment holding company GL Ltd., has run into numerous issues with the island’s 7,000 locals while attempting to build various projects there since the 1990s, reports Bloomberg. Many objected to what they saw as overdevelopment of their homeland, and in response, GL shut down the ranch in 2008.

“Residents of Molokai don’t like to be bullied,” Alan Arakawa, the mayor of the city and county of Maui, said.

Ultimately, GL said it hopes the buyer has a “new vision” for the property. Scott Carvill and Vicki Yu of Carvill Sotheby’s International Realty have the listing. See its stunning coastline and land, below.


Whoever buys the ranch, which takes up roughly 35% of the island, will be one of the top five private landowners in the state.

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Richard A. Cooke III

In the 1800s, part of the land was occupied by the Hawaiian royal family.

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Richard A. Cooke III

Source: Bloomberg


The island has a history of agriculture and an operating cattle business.

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Richard A. Cooke III

Until the early ’80s, the island grew pineapples with the help of a now-banned insecticide called Heptachlor.

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Maunaloa town
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Richard A. Cooke III

Source: Bloomberg


There are two resorts on the property, both of which are now closed. There’s the Lodge at Maunaloa — a property GL had begun developing before pushback from the community halted production — and the oceanfront Kaluakoi Hotel, which closed in 2001.

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The Kaluakoi hotel and Golf Course
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Richard A. Cooke III

There is, however, the still-open Ironwood Hills Golf Course.

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Ironwood Hills Golf Course
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Richard A. Cooke III

Bloomberg reported that there is a tight community living on the island. “We have a very strong activist community on this island,” Richard (“Rikki”) Cooke III, a resident on the island, said.

The beaches are beautiful on Molokai.

source
Richard A. Cooke III

Source: Bloomberg


There are over 20 miles of coastline and a mixture of landscapes, including pastures and rainforest.

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Kawakiu Nui Beach
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Richard A. Cooke III

Just off the coast is more than 14,000 acres of reef habitat.

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Richard A. Cooke III

There’s also over 4,000 acres of forested conservation lands.

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Richard A. Cooke III

Honolulu is just a 30-minute flight by private jet from Molokai.

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Papohaku Beach
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Richard A. Cooke III