Saturday, March 19, 2011

Tsunami Closes Kona Village and Four Seasons on the Big Island

Kona Village, (pictured here in 2010) the low-key luxury resort north of Kailua Kona, has closed "indefinitely" in the wake of the March 11 tsunami surge that knocked 20 beach-side hales from their foundations and inundated resort grounds, destroying infastructure. Some 200 employees will be out of jobs beginning April 3 at the 45-year-old resort.

Meanwhile, The Four Seasons Hualalai—nextdoor on the coast but more upscale in design—announced a six-week closure to take care of wave damage and debris that came ashore during the event. The Big Island took significant damage farther down the coast, including along tourist-packed Ali'i Drive in Kailua, where resorts and homes were flooded, and in Kealakeua Bay, where homes were washed to sea.