It’s hard to believe that the house pictured below is part of an upscale community at the base of Diamond Head Crater. Kahala has been called the Rodeo of the islands, with beautiful multimillion (billion) dollar mansions that line the perfectly-manicured streets and oceanfront views that are seemingly worth a pretty penny.

But this mansion is nowhere near that level of luxury; at least not any more. Since Japanese billionaire Genshiro Kawamoto purchased the property several years ago, it has quickly been downgraded to a shanty, if that, with its boarded up walls and shattered glass-pane windows.

Sadly, the story is the same for more than two dozen other properties in Kahala. Kawamoto went on a shopping frenzy for mansions a while back, making a spectacle in the community when he gave a few of those properties to low-income families. Since then, the only spectacle that remains are the dilapidated mansions plagued by graffiti and squatters.

This particular property, however, happens to be one of the most visible eyesores in the ritzy community. It’s located near the entrance to Hunakai Beach Park, a popular spot for snorkeling and swimming. On our way to the beach, I stopped to take a couple of pictures of the unsightly home. The moss-filled pool and graffitied walls are not exactly images of Hawaii we want visitors to remember us by.

Shame on Kawamoto for all that he’s done (or hasn’t done) to our island community. I don’t understand how it got this far or how he was even able to buy so many properties at once. But sadly, the damage is done and we’re stuck with his mess. Lets hope the city steps in to clean it up soon.


  1. Don't let the city do anything but sell the property or properties for back taxes and insure that who ever buys it refurbishes it.  I remember seeing a story about this on tv and everyone they interviewed was thrilled that Kawamoto moved a low income family into one of his houses they were even raving that the family was actually keeping the house up and nice looking.  Wonder what happened with that,

  2. I tried to Google map this park but no luck. I'm still in love with that huge lot on Kahala Ave just East of Elepaio St – love to build an epic sized home but uber casual with the famous Hawaii split pitch roof and 30 ft celings and everything opens to the ocean (oh to dream).  I always feed bad for the houses like in your photos when they're let go.  There was a time when this house held happy people celebrating good times with food and fun and now it's tossed aside like trash – makes me a little blue…

  3. Why doesn't the property taxation department/city of Honolulu fine this man and increase his property taxes to the hilt, but of course that wouldn't be tough enough on this wealthy bastard.  Well then bulldoze all the houses down to the ground. Why don't  the residents start a petition or are they afraid it will cause their property taxes to increase too. Something should be done soon as this mess is devaluing the whole neighborhood and infesting with rats. Why was this Japanese man allowed to buy so many properties, is he a true resident of Hawaii, if not kick the bastard out or lock him up.

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