HONOLULU (AP) - Time shares in Hawaii are growing despite a severe downturn in other parts of the country in recent years, the head of the American Resort Development Association said.
CEO Howard Nusbaum said that time shares in Hawaii fared better than most from 2007 to 2009. The statewide occupancy rate for time-share units averaged 87 percent in 2011 as compared with 78.9 percent at time shares throughout the nation, he said. And, he said, time shares in Hawaii in 2012 are expected to grow.
"Two kinds of people buy in Hawaii: those who love Hawaii and those who are time-share devotees who realize it's a powerful exchange. Having Hawaii is like having Boardwalk and Park Place in a Monopoly game," he said.
There's no doubt that time shares are growing again in Hawaii, said Joseph Toy, president and CEO of Hospitality Advisors LLC. As many as 261 time-share units were added between 2010 and 2011, Toy said. Last year, there were 10,201 time-share units across the isles, he said.
"There is a lot of pent-up demand for travel," Toy said. "Now that the economics seem to be strengthening, I'm sure that there will be an uptick in time-share development and buying."
Altogether, about 1,436 time-share units are scheduled to be built in Hawaii between 2011 and the end of next year, Nusbaum said. There also is the potential for another 2,336 units, he said.
Dave and Jeannine Funk live in Reno, Nev., but spend a good deal of time in Hawaii. They bought a time share at the Hilton Hawaiian Village Waikiki Beach Resort in 2010 while the market was in recovery.
"We come at least once a year to Hawaii, sometimes twice," Jeannine Funk said. "We'd been coming to Hawaii for 40 years, so buying a time share just made sense."