Family-style hotel OK’d for Wailea

The Maui Planning Commission unanimously approved a new, family-focused, 200-room hotel in Wailea.

The Pi’ilani Suites will be built by R.D. Olson Cos., which also constructed the Courtyard Maui Kahului Airport. Marriott International will manage the new hotel on 6.4 acres owned by A&B Wailea LLC.

Construction is expected to generate 260 jobs for 18 months, and the hotel itself, 52 jobs.

The commission approved special management area and planned development step two permits for the project Tuesday.

Located on land mauka of Wailea Alanui Drive and between the Wailea Town Center and Wailea Ike Drive, Wailea the four-story hotel aims to be more affordable than the luxury hotels in the Wailea resort. Planned guest amenities include free breakfast and Internet access, a laundry room, walking and bike paths, a resort-style pool, a sports court, a fitness center and 138 on-site parking stalls.

Project planners have designed the project to use natural lighting, energy-efficient appliances and renewable energy sources. Landscaping will be planted to screen the hotel from its entrance off Wailea Ike Drive.

As a planned development project, the hotel grounds will be at least 20 percent open space and “integrated with structures and interior access ways in order to maximize its parklike effect,” according to a Planning Department staff report.

The project developers need to prepare a development site and building program with construction plans; site plans showing grading, landscaping and protected areas; the locations of each structure; and building plans, financing and timing – all for review, comment and approval by the county planning director.

The commission’s approval comes with a condition that construction begin by Feb. 28, 2017, and be completed within five years.

The developers will need to comply with an archaeological monitoring plan; stop work if human remains are found; use best management practices to protect ocean water quality and marine resources; employ drought-tolerant and native plants in landscaping; and make water system, drainage and traffic improvements.

For another project in Wailea, the commission unanimously granted step one and two approvals and a special management area permit for a new, nearly 16,500-square-foot grocery store, the Island Country Market, as an addition to the Kihei side of the Shops at Wailea.

Plans call for the store to be built on the northeast corner of the shopping complex’s parking lot. Aside from groceries, the store will have landscaping, a bicycle rack, skylights, a bar and dining areas.

Wailea Community Association General Manager Frank “Bud” Pikrone wrote to planners to express the community’s “joy in finally seeing a place to purchase quality food goods without having to drive to Kihei or Kahului.”

“This new venture at the Shops at Wailea has been something desired by the residents for many years,” he said, adding that he believes the project will reduce traffic on South Kihei Road and Piilani Highway.

Wailea condominium owner Marjorie McCarthy told planners the store would be “a great boon and convenience to Wailea residents.”

Developers need to begin construction by Feb. 28, 2017, and complete work in five years. They will be required to obtain a noise permit during construction; follow best management practices for erosion, contaminants and construction waste; have an archaeologist on site to monitor digging; and to stop work if historical resources, including human remains, are found.

In other action, the commission deferred action for a second time this month on a proposed final decision to reject appeals challenging permits for the Rock & Brews restaurant in Paia.

Irene Bowie, executive director of the Maui Tomorrow Foundation, an appellant in the case, said lawyers were continuing to work on an amicable settlement to the dispute over Planning Director Will Spence’s decision to grant a minor special management area permit for the project.

On Dec. 10, commission members unanimously rejected the appeals of those seeking a full SMA permit for Rock & Brews. The restaurant’s grand opening was held Jan. 26.

* Brian Perry can be reached at