Turtle Bay beginnings
The letter stating that Hilton built Turtle Bay is way off (“Save Turtle Bay,” Jan. 23). Del Webb built it as The Kuilima Resort Hotel and Country Club in the early 1970s. When the gambling thing did not pass it was sold to Hyatt Hotels in the mid ‘70s. It was my first job here in Hawaii. I clearly remember a mandatory meeting about expansion. I raised my hand and was told I could speak. I simply asked, “Why do you want to build more hotels when you can not fill this one up?” I brought down the house with applause, not meaning to do anything.
This battle wages back many years. The Hilton bought it in the ‘80s and did a major multi-million dollar renovation. They also renamed it Turtle Bay. They also failed to make it work.
Some people say there is a curse there because of the way Del Webb had it built. That he had no regard for burial sites.
There have been several other owners. The latest which have made the nicest cosmetic improvements to my eye.
So with a fairly accurate timeline here I ask the same question I asked in 1976.
Barbara Williams Haleiwa, HI