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Thread: Aloha Tower Marketplace

  1. #1
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    Unhappy Aloha Tower Marketplace

    Chai's Island Bistro, one of the few remaining signs of life at Aloha Tower Marketplace is closing at the end of the year.

    I'm not sure if the complex was ever really thriving, though I'm certain people used to spend more time there (poor parking notwithstanding). I do recall a rather messy change in management a few years ago, after which things really seemed to fall apart.

    It used to be a favorite place for my in-laws to wander for a morning each time they visited. Last year, I met them there to find a veritable ghost town. Empty retail spaces everywhere, with tiny businesses lost in space, eking out an existence like weeds in the cracks of a broad expanse of cold concrete.

    Now a seemingly perfectly positioned retail and dining hotspot is being eyed as a place to stash HPU students... making for perhaps one of the more picturesque college dorm settings out there.

    Similar to Restaurant Row, dumping the food-promising moniker for a more generally corporate name (One Waterfront), it seems the harbor area is a tough place to do business. Any ideas why?

  2. #2

    Default Re: Aloha Tower Marketplace

    Quote Originally Posted by pzarquon View Post
    it seems the harbor area is a tough place to do business. Any ideas why?
    They charge crazy high $$$ so there will only be big pockets renting, the marketing was always sketchy, and with the everchanging mgmnt. and the risks that comes with that meant few are willing to gamble. Those that did had to charge high prices, limiting their shopper base to those with disposable incomes, and the place never felt welcoming, just cold and distant.
    I worked at Don Ho's their first year and they'd always bring in a crowd if the enticement was there with good music, otherwise they did fair to poor.
    The place can be a goldmine if done right, but when does Hawaii ever do anything right when high stakes are being played?

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Aloha Tower Marketplace

    I always liked that place, but parking was just ridiculous. I visited more often as a bus-riding pedestrian than I ever did as a driver, which can be a good thing in the right neighborhood, but it's a bad thing in that neighborhood.

    I'd love to see it hang on, or to experience a rebirth. The prices never bothered me because they seemed about right for the kind of businesses that existed there. I've never thought the prices at Gordon Biersch or Chai's were especially high for the type of establishments they were. The food court prices were slightly higher than one might expect in similar spaces, but they compared okay to the same types of joints in Waikiki.

    It was always the parking. Ask almost anyone who lives here why they don't go to Aloha Tower and the first thing they say is almost always parking.
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  4. #4
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    Default Re: Aloha Tower Marketplace

    If you have no parking or incredibly high parking rates, people will always opt for a place where there is preferably free parking and that parking is plentiful. Aloha Tower Marketplace is definitely not it.

    My favorite thing to do there is take pictures of ships docked at the various piers or watch a few of them come and go. Aloha Tower itself is one of my favorite places... but I used to like it when there was no development there when the only thing you had to do about parking was plug a few coins in the meter.

    As for the eating places, except for a few political fundraisers that I been to, never really dined at any place per se except for the food court, which is now long gone.

    When I do go there, I tend to go on a Sunday when on street parking is free downtown and walk across treacherous Nimitz highway to get to the place.

    Another thing that did not help the concept I believe is 9-11. Prior to that cruise ships could dock at Pier 9, Piers 10 and 11. Today they can only dock at Piers 10 and 11 and many times way over at Pier 2, which I don't think tourist passengers want to walk from there to the Aloha Tower area. Plus they can all eat onboard the ship.

    I think whoever is in charge of the place will hopefully get a better deal out of HPU and the proposed dorm space that they want to convert most of the upper floors to. And more than likely some of the downstairs places will be leased out for classrooms or office space to HPU or someone else.

    Things however will get worst for the place once the "big expensive behemoth of rail"* and its construction rolls into the area in a few years.
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  5. #5

    Default Re: Aloha Tower Marketplace

    Quote Originally Posted by scrivener View Post
    It was always the parking. Ask almost anyone who lives here why they don't go to Aloha Tower and the first thing they say is almost always parking.
    Bullseye. The absence of free parking alone dooms any aspirations of ATM being a shopping/entertainment mecca for the locals, as I already declared in a previous post last year. And with the decision to convert retail space into student dorms, it would appear that the landlord has (at least for the time being) finally thrown in the towel trying to fill all of its empty units with stores that will cater either to tourists or locals.
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    Red face Re: Aloha Tower Marketplace

    I agree the parking was a key downside, but unavoidable that close to downtown. Considering what monthly parking costs, and what an hour costs at any private lot just two blocks away, they couldn't offer free or cheap parking (which anyone good at math would figure out makes leaving your car at Aloha Tower a more affordable option than any private lot). And though they tried to offset with 'validation,' that requires businesses worth spending money on.

    On the other hand, the size of crowds for concerts and other special events suggests that people will find a way to get there, if there's anything worth seeing. Upper end restaurants aren't quite enough to make it a hangout hotspot (Chai's or Gordon Biersch on certain nights are probably the best it got).

    I do think someone could've done something special there, even if it was based entirely on bussed-in tourists. But the current management just didn't hit on it.

    BTW, I would say, given scrivener's "I visited more often once I started riding the bus" observation, that the arrival of rail could actually help Aloha Tower find a sustainable retail mix. Until then, slamming in college dorms (which, if managed well, offer reasonable and stable revenue with less risk) seems like a smart move.

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    Post Re: Aloha Tower Marketplace

    Having been to many enjoyable times at Aloha Tower Marketplace and finding parking and the prices for restaurants as expected, though shops very high end...
    I figure the businesses just don't get enough of the buying/spending public to pay the high rents eh?
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  8. #8

    Default Re: Aloha Tower Marketplace

    Quote Originally Posted by pzarquon View Post
    On the other hand, the size of crowds for concerts and other special events suggests that people will find a way to get there, if there's anything worth seeing.
    I think the operative word there is "special." Retail shops and restaurants can't survive on a big crowd that comes along once a month or so. At least, not at the rent that ATM tenants are being charged.

    And just because a particular location is suitable as a concert venue does not automatically mean there's a path to make that same place a successful shopping mall.... especially if we're talking about parking (or the lack thereof). People don't typically haul a cart load of merchandise away from a concert site, right? But people who go shopping do. Ergo, they'll need a place to park their vehicle close by in order to take their purchases home. Concert goers might tolerate having to use public transportation or parking their cars in a remote location. But local shoppers are a totally different story.

    Quote Originally Posted by pzarquon View Post
    I do think someone could've done something special there, even if it was based entirely on bussed-in tourists.
    The Queen Emma Foundation has recently announced plans to overhaul the International Market Place and re-develop it into a complex that will house high-end retail tenants. Potentially, this opens an opportunity for ATM if they are open-minded towards filling the niche that the IMP is abandoning. Think about it. Currently, a steady flow of tourists are willing to make the trek to Halawa in order to shop for souvenirs at the Aloha Stadium Swap Meet that's open for business 3 days a week. What if you had a swap meet/bazaar type of ambiance at Aloha Tower 7 days a week? If you ask me, going after bargain-hunting tourists makes more sense than trying to stick with a business model (high-end retail) that has been a miserable failure at the waterfront for well over a decade now.
    Last edited by Frankie's Market; December 4th, 2012 at 02:32 AM.
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  9. #9
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    Default Re: Aloha Tower Marketplace

    Quote Originally Posted by Frankie's Market View Post
    The Queen Emma Foundation has recently announced plans to overhaul the International Market Place and re-develop it into a complex that will house high-end retail tenants. Potentially, this opens an opportunity for ATM if they are open-minded towards filling the niche that the IMP is abandoning. Think about it. Currently, a steady flow of tourists are willing to make the trek to Halawa in order to shop for souvenirs at the Aloha Stadium Swap Meet that's open for business 3 days a week. What if you had a swap meet/bazaar type of ambiance at Aloha Tower 7 days a week?.
    Interesting concept! I first visited IMP in 1967. It was a vibrant, exciting place with some decent merchandise. The last time I visited IMP was 2005. It was pretty depressing place with a lot of junk merchandise.

    Perhaps ATM is a bit too far from the strip at Waikiki to make it a viable shopping location for tourists. And every time I have been to the swap meet, it looked like primarily locals to me, but my observations were not verified by a marketing survey, so I could be wrong.

    I have just returned from Western Europe, where public transportation - buses and metro - are a vibrant form of transportation for both locals and tourists in cities much, much smaller than Honolulu, one city with less than 200K population with a very extensive above and below ground metro. Uaifi and matapule used both and found them an easy (though not necessarily inexpensive but less expensive than private car) way to get around. It is going to be difficult for Honolulu to develop it's extended greater business area locations (like Ala Moana Center, ATM, Waikiki, Aloha Stadium) until they build a public transportation system that is easy for tourists to use.

    As an aside, we visited Bilbao in the Basque region of Spain. It is a historic region but in 1995 they were only getting about 25K tourists a year. The community leaders decided to roll the dice and build a metro system and a Guggenheim Museum to increase tourism. It was going to cost US$200M (just for the museum) to develop that infrastructure. As you in Honolulu have experienced, the decision was extremely controversial. The Spanish government refused to participate, so all the money was raised locally. Today, Bilbao hosts 650K tourists a year. It is called the "Guggenheim Effect." The Museum more than pays for itself over again, each and every year. It is so profitable, the Spanish government now wants a piece of the action and the locals have told them to go pound sand.

    And we rode the metro to get there - cost a couple of dollars and ten minutes.
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  10. #10

    Default Re: Aloha Tower Marketplace

    With the alternatives being less than perfect towards improving the environment at ATM, I love the HPU aspect of housing hundreds of babes there. I'm a harbor rat, having worked and lived there years ago, and this will be more reason to venture down to my old stomping grounds. Plus having a new concert venue that eclipses the half-assed outdoors stage area is very welcome.

  11. #11

    Default Re: Aloha Tower Marketplace

    Quote Originally Posted by matapule View Post
    Interesting concept! I first visited IMP in 1967. It was a vibrant, exciting place with some decent merchandise. The last time I visited IMP was 2005. It was pretty depressing place with a lot of junk merchandise.
    One man's "junk" is another man's treasure, as the old saying goes. Say what you want about the IMP, with it's crumbling pavement and mish-mosh of kiosks. It is THE place with the heaviest customer foot traffic in Waikiki, bar none. Every other retail complex in that area (Royal Hawn. Center, Waikiki Shopping Plaza, DFS Galleria, Waikiki Beach Walk, etc.) are all distant also-rans. It's no comparison, really.

    Quote Originally Posted by matapule View Post
    Perhaps ATM is a bit too far from the strip at Waikiki to make it a viable shopping location for tourists. And every time I have been to the swap meet, it looked like primarily locals to me, but my observations were not verified by a marketing survey, so I could be wrong.
    The crowd at Aloha Stadium has a few locals, sure. But there's a lot of tourists walking around there on the weekends. The Aloha Stadium swap meet vendors definitely cater to the tourist market, while the Kam Drive-In swap meet is geared more towards locals.

    And if you think that ATM is too far from Waikiki for tourists who want to go shopping, then say hello to Waikele Premium Outlets.

    Waikele is the one shining example that disproves the notion that tourists on Oahu will only shop in Waikiki, Ala Moana, and Ward. The potential for Aloha Tower is likewise there. It needs to focus itself on trying to attract a particular niche, gather a synergistic mix of tenants, and market itself better. Before tourists even step off the plane, they already know about Ala Moana, IMP, and Waikele. ATM also needs to be on the radar of people planning their Hawaiian vacation.
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  12. #12

    Default Re: Aloha Tower Marketplace

    Quote Originally Posted by Frankie's Market View Post
    Say what you want about the IMP ... It is THE place with the heaviest customer foot traffic in Waikiki, bar none.
    ~ ~ ~
    Waikele is the one shining example that disproves the notion that tourists on Oahu will only shop in Waikiki, Ala Moana, and Ward. ... Before tourists even step off the plane, they already know about Ala Moana, IMP, and Waikele. ATM also needs to be on the radar of people planning their Hawaiian vacation.
    Not suggesting I doubt you, FM, but do you have any data to back up these comments, or just anecdotal evidence (which is certainly not to be completely discounted)? And as regards the last statement, my own "anecdotal evidence" (many conversations with Hawai`i-bound travelers from this region, due to my own connections to the Islands) suggests that far more mainland tourists are aware of ATM than of Waikele.

  13. #13

    Default Re: Aloha Tower Marketplace

    Quote Originally Posted by Leo Lakio View Post
    Not suggesting I doubt you, FM, but do you have any data to back up these comments, or just anecdotal evidence (which is certainly not to be completely discounted)?
    A good question. The one (and most important) bit of hard data that makes it all but obvious that Waikele towers over ATM when it comes to retail spending is to simply look at each property's directory.

    Waikele Premium Outlets

    Aloha Tower Marketplace

    Waikele has a brimming roster of major name-brand shops. Armani, Calvin Klein, Saks, Banana Republic, Levi's, Adidas, etc.

    And what do you have at ATM? Hibiscus Collection? Ann's Fashion? Rainbow Hawaii Souvenirs?

    Not to put any of these local retailers down. But seriously. Looking at each center's directory, do you honestly believe whatever "anecdotal evidence" is being fed to you about ATM being more prominent than Waikele when it comes to retail activity that fuels Hawaii's economic engine?

    Quote Originally Posted by Leo Lakio View Post
    And as regards the last statement, my own "anecdotal evidence" (many conversations with Hawai`i-bound travelers from this region, due to my own connections to the Islands) suggests that far more mainland tourists are aware of ATM than of Waikele.
    If a few "mainland tourists" are the main source of your knowledge, then that would explain, in large part, the disconnect between what you think and the reality here.

    The biggest spending tourists in Hawaii are, by far, the Chinese and Japanese. Any analysis of the tourism industry w/o a consideration about the spending habits of these markets would be off-kilter, to say the least.

    Instead of talking to a few random tourists who have come to Hawaii, have you ever talked to anyone who has worked for major tour companies, like Jalpak & JTB (for the Japanese), Galaxy & Dragon (for the Chinese). People who are employed by these companies will know where their clients like to spend their money. You get a far bigger picture of the state of tourism when you get your info from someone who works in the industry.

    In my experience, "shopping" is not the first thing that will come into most tourist's minds when you mention Aloha Tower. They'll instead think about cruise ships, boat days, and the iconic clock tower. And that, in a nutshell, explains why ATM remains so economically stagnant.
    Last edited by Frankie's Market; December 4th, 2012 at 06:53 PM.
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  14. #14

    Default Re: Aloha Tower Marketplace

    Quote Originally Posted by Frankie's Market View Post
    A good question. The one (and most important) bit of hard data that makes it all but obvious that Waikele towers over ATM when it comes to retail spending is to simply look at each property's directory. ---
    You did not answer my question about your statement that the IMP "is THE place with the heaviest customer foot traffic in Waikiki, bar none."
    Quote Originally Posted by Frankie's Market View Post
    The biggest spending tourists in Hawaii are, by far, the Chinese and Japanese.
    Again, I'd like to see data to back that up. According to HTA figures, there are far more domestic visitors to the Islands than international - but if you have data to prove that the Chinese and Japanese spend more, please share it.
    Quote Originally Posted by Frankie's Market View Post
    In my experience, "shopping" is not the first thing that will come into most tourist's minds when you mention Aloha Tower. They'll instead think about cruise ships, boat days, and the iconic clock tower. And that, in a nutshell, explains why ATM remains so economically stagnant.
    I believe you are absolutely correct on that front - Aloha Tower is a nostalgic place for tourists - not so much a shopping "destination."
    Last edited by Leo Lakio; December 4th, 2012 at 07:29 PM.

  15. #15

    Default Re: Aloha Tower Marketplace

    Quote Originally Posted by Leo Lakio View Post
    You did not answer my question about your statement that the IMP "is THE place with the heaviest customer foot traffic in Waikiki, bar none."Again, I'd like to see data to back that up.
    I don't have data on that. But then again, any person who actually goes into Waikiki with functioning eyesight can see that truth for themselves rather easily.

    Quote Originally Posted by Leo Lakio View Post
    According to HTA figures, there are far more domestic visitors to thlands than international - but if you have data to prove that the Chinese and Japanese spend more, please share it.
    Oh, I wasn't talking about gross totals. I was talking in per capita terms, which is more important to retailers when it comes to effectively marketing themselves to the right demographics.

    Star Advertiser

    Chinese visitors are expected to spend an average of $368 per person per day this year, compared to just $275 per day for every Japanese tourist, said David Uchiyama, vice president of brand management for the Hawaii Tourism Authority, who welcomed the Chinese guests at a special airport reception that included hula dancers, live Hawaiian music, leis, soft drinks and plenty of picture taking.

    By comparison, the average spending for all Hawaii tourists averages just $178 per day, according to the HTA.
    Last edited by Frankie's Market; December 4th, 2012 at 08:14 PM.
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  16. #16

    Default Re: Aloha Tower Marketplace

    Quote Originally Posted by Frankie's Market View Post
    I don't have data on that. But then again, any person who actually goes into Waikiki with functioning eyesight can see that truth for themselves rather easily.
    OK, so with this, you admit that your only evidence for your statement regarding foot traffic in Waikiki is anecdotal, and thus should be considered with that caveat. That's fine with me. On to the tourist-spending points...

    Your quote from the S-A article of 1/30/11:
    By comparison, the average spending for all Hawaii tourists averages just $178 per day, according to the HTA.
    is too vague. If you wish to support a claim of Chinese & Japanese tourists spending more per capita than Mainland tourists, then you need to show comparative figures of those three distinct groups, not just two of them against "all" tourists. (Again, I'm not saying you are wrong, just that you are not showing clear proof to support your assumption.)

    In this later article from Pacific Business News, dated 10/25/11, you will also find these statements:
    Total visitor spending rose almost 20 percent to top $1 billion in September, as visitors from the West Coast, Japan and Canada increased their average daily spending, the Hawaii Tourism Authority said.
    Per-person spending in September rose 12.6 percent to $198.60 per day, compared to $176.40 per day in September 2010. Much of that was due to increases in average daily spending by Mainland, Canadian and Japanese visitors.
    It also goes on to speak of "the continued increase in Japanese visitor spending."

    Still not conclusive proof, and just as vague as your own supporting argument. So I offer this very recent PBN article, dated 11/29/12, which states clearly that Japan has just recently (October) become Hawaii’s second largest visitor market, after the U.S. West Coast market, and only now just ahead of the U.S. East Coast market.

    Key points from the article ---
    Visitor arrivals from each market, October 2012:
    U.S. Mainland - 374,401 (255,602 West Coast + 118,799 East Coast)
    Japan - 125,742

    Total visitor expenditures from each market:
    U.S. Mainland - $627.1 million ($381.7 m West Coast + $245.4 m East Coast)
    Japan - $236.4 million

    I believe that the above figures show that U.S. Mainland visitors spend more money in Hawai`i than those from Japan.

  17. #17
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    Post Re: Aloha Tower Marketplace

    "The plan calls for retail and restaurants below, and dorm space above. The former Maritime Center at Pier 7 would become an HPU faculty and alumni center, and Pier 10 would house a sports and entertainment complex. The university and its agents would oversee property management."

    "HPU and the Aloha Tower Development Corp. plan to meet again in mid-December to further discuss the project."

    http://www.hawaiinewsnow.com/story/2...er-marketplace

    This great news to me that the closed for years Maritime Center will no longer be of any concern to the Bishop Museum.
    It still costs the museum money, man power and still at this point we receive alarm calls for doors, etc. Fingers crossed!
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    Default Re: Aloha Tower Marketplace

    Given the poor state of the present use of the site, i have to agree that HPU taking it entirely over sounds like a good thing. I am sure they will continue to lease at least the ground floors for commercial and hopefully leave the two patio like observation areas as is and open to the public.
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  19. #19
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    Default Re: Aloha Tower Marketplace

    I imagine a lot of the HPU students hope it does become dorm rooms, since they'd be directly above Gordon Biersch... and Hooters.
    As for International Market Place, I remember going there in 1961 or 1962 when it was full of real Hawaiian items, not the awful junk that's in there now. And this was when the Royal Hawaiian Hotel had those beautiful old gardens that have been destroyed and covered with the Royal Hawaiian Marketplace.
    As for who spends more, I'll just remind you that things are drastically cheaper here than in Japan, to the point where Japan now offers weekly trips here solely designed around shopping excursions.
    .
    .

    That's my story, and I'm sticking to it.

  20. #20

    Default Re: Aloha Tower Marketplace

    Quote Originally Posted by Leo Lakio View Post
    Your quote from the S-A article of 1/30/11: is too vague. If you wish to support a claim of Chinese & Japanese tourists spending more per capita than Mainland tourists, then you need to show comparative figures of those three distinct groups, not just two of them against "all" tourists. (Again, I'm not saying you are wrong, just that you are not showing clear proof to support your assumption.)
    Leo, you asked for data that would support my statement that Chinese and Japanese tourists spend more than other visitors. I provided that through an article where the context is made clear that those groups spend more than the others. If you're going to insist that the failure of that article to provide a spending average for every other specific group will arguably leave open the possibility that mainlanders or some other group spend more on average, then that's all fine and good. I've no desire to carry on a debate over something that is plainly obvious to anyone who actually works with tourists on a daily basis.
    Last edited by Frankie's Market; December 5th, 2012 at 11:14 PM.
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    Default Re: Aloha Tower Marketplace

    Quote Originally Posted by matapule View Post
    The last time I visited IMP was 2005. It was a pretty depressing place with a lot of junk merchandise.
    Quote Originally Posted by LikaNui View Post
    As for International Market Place, I remember going there in 1961 or 1962 when it was full of real Hawaiian items, not the awful junk that's in there now.
    Quote Originally Posted by Frankie's Market View Post
    One man's "junk" is another man's treasure, as the old saying goes.
    Careful there Lika Nuki, you and I have both been "proven" wrong by one FM.
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    Default Re: Aloha Tower Marketplace

    Quote Originally Posted by Frankie's Market View Post
    I've no desire to carry on a debate over something that is plainly obvious to anyone who actually works with tourists on a daily basis.
    Snicker, snicker.......giggle, giggle..........ROTFLMAO.......

    Sorry Frankie, but the devil made me do this.
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  23. #23

    Default Re: Aloha Tower Marketplace

    Quote Originally Posted by Frankie's Market View Post
    ... something that is plainly obvious to anyone who actually works with tourists on a daily basis.
    Again, you admit to your statements being based upon anecdotal evidence, such as that quoted above.

    Remember, I regularly said I was not saying you were wrong - in fact, my initial gut reaction was to agree with you on this, but I wanted proof, solid data that was more measurable than my gut or your conjecture. The data I quoted ($627.1 million spent by Mainland visitors in one month vs. $236.4 million spent by Japanese visitors; Chinese guests not listed by HTA as they were a smaller-spending group than the other two) seems to emphasize that you may have been in error, while the data you put forward did not fully support your belief (by failing to show Mainland visitor figures in comparison - a key part of your argument).

    Apparently, your signature line's statement of "polite discussion of difference of opinion is welcome" is not always the case. Let the record show that I kept it polite throughout, and we now move on.
    Last edited by Leo Lakio; December 6th, 2012 at 06:23 AM.

  24. #24

    Default Re: Aloha Tower Marketplace

    Quote Originally Posted by Leo Lakio View Post
    Again, you admit to your statements being based upon anecdotal evidence, such as that quoted above.
    If you're going to lump stats put out by HTA as being nothing more than "anecdotal evidence," then so be it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Leo Lakio View Post
    Remember, I regularly said I was not saying you were wrong - in fact, my initial gut reaction was to agree with you on this, but I wanted proof, solid data that was more measurable than my gut or your conjecture. The data I quoted ($627.1 million spent by Mainland visitors in one month vs. $236.4 million spent by Japanese visitors; Chinese guests not listed by HTA as they were a smaller-spending group than the other two) seems to emphasize that you may have been in error,
    As I said before, I was talking about spending per tourist, not gross figures.

    Quote Originally Posted by Leo Lakio View Post
    Apparently, your signature line's statement of "polite discussion of difference of opinion is welcome" is not always the case.
    How is that so in this thread, Leo? Even though I don't agree with all your statements, did I not say "that's all fine and good" when commenting on your viewpoint?

    Or does your definition of politeness means that I can't express a viewpoint that differs from yours.

    Quote Originally Posted by Leo Lakio View Post
    Let the record show that I kept it polite throughout,
    As did I, Leo.
    This post may contain an opinion that may conflict with your opinion. Do not take it personal. Polite discussion of difference of opinion is welcome.

  25. #25

    Default Re: Aloha Tower Marketplace

    Quote Originally Posted by matapule View Post
    Careful there Lika Nuki, you and I have both been "proven" wrong by one FM.
    I see that my observations about the IMP has somehow upset you.

    But as I told Leo above, I'm not going to hide whatever viewpoint I may have, however contrary it may be with what you or anybody else may think.

    Think about this for a moment, though. All of the vendors in the IMP have rent and expenses they have to pay. All of them are trying to make as much money as they can to feed their families. Ergo, the merchandise they are trying to hawk is helping them to accomplish these goals. If they were totally valueless "junk" that tourists didn't want, the merchants wouldn't waste their time and tie-up their cash flow purchasing and trying to unload items that aren't selling, would they? It's no different than Walmart stocking crateloads of whatever latest CD Justin Bieber has released. Whatever artistic merits (or lack thereof) you attach to the music that today's teen idols are putting out, it sells and makes money. That is all that matters to Walmart. And the same goes for those IMP vendors.

    I'm not engaged in this discussion in order to get into a pissing match about who's personal tastes are superior. Taking a step backward to look at the title, it is about the problems (primarily business in nature) that Aloha Tower Marketplace faces. Hence, my posting on this matter, which were intended to be more business-minded. But if you are more concerned with issues having to do with the aesthetics of what tourists are purchasing, then I gladly defer to whatever criticism and judgements you want to hand out in that area.
    Last edited by Frankie's Market; December 6th, 2012 at 09:55 AM.
    This post may contain an opinion that may conflict with your opinion. Do not take it personal. Polite discussion of difference of opinion is welcome.

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