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The Honolulu Advertiser

Posted at 12:03 p.m., Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Business briefs: Visitor arrivals hit record in July

Advertiser Staff

Hawai'i welcomed 736,820 tourists in July, setting yet another monthly record in visitor arrivals.

Visitor spending also grew 11.2 percent to $1.2 billion, according to data released today by the state Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism. Average daily spending last month was $168.50 per person, up from $164 per person in July 2004.

The growth in visitor arrivals — up 7.7 percent over the previous July — helped boost total visitor days by 8.4 percent. Visitors' average length of stay grew slightly by 0.7 percent to 9.33 days.

"We are very pleased with July's extraordinary performance, especially from the domestic market," said state tourism liaison Marsha Wienert. "All indicators continue to show that our visiro industry is poised to have the best year ever."

The number of visitors from the western United States grew the most among Hawai'i's top four major markets with a 12.8 percent increase to 320,332. U.S. East visitor arrivals increased 3 percent to 202,380, and Canadian visitor arrivals grew 6 percent to 12,055.

Japanese tourists totaled 130,941, a 0.8 percent increase.

Every island saw more visitors last month except for Moloka'i, where visitor arrivals dropped 4.8 percent. Visitor arrivals grew 7.9 percent on O'ahu, 4.2 percent on Kaua'i, 2.6 percent on Maui, 15.1 percent on Lana'i, and 16 percent on the Big Island.

Norwegian Cruise Lines contributed to the increase in visitors with the introduction of the new Pride of America cruiseship, which began touring the Islands in July. The number of visitors who flew here to board Hawai'i-based cruise ships grew 57 percent year-over-year to 22,725.

Servco Pacific to expand Toyota City dealership

Servco Pacific Inc. announced plans to renovate and expand its Toyota City dealership in Mapunapuna in an $8 million effort anticipated for completion in March 2006.

Business will continue during construction. When complete, the dealership at 2850 Pukoloa St. will be renamed Servco Auto Honolulu and feature a 39,000-square-foot showroom, more parking and a courtyard entrance including a water display.

The project continues a string of dealership expansions for Servco, which last year began work to double the size of its Waipahu dealership at a cost of $12 million. That expansion followed Servco's $3 million transformation of the former Columbia Inn restaurant on Kapi'olani Boulevard into a pre-owned automobile showroom in 2002.