The Shops at Wailea Announces Plans for Center’s Revitalization

Design draws inspiration from surrounding natural landscape and infuses elements of Hawaiian culture

As part of its strategic efforts to enhance the guest experience at The Shops at Wailea, The Shops announces center-wide revitalization plans for Maui’s premier shopping and dining destination. Construction has commenced for the renovation, with a target completion set prior to the 2020 holiday season.The Shops at Wailea

The redevelopment design is intended to open up the space, improve sight-lines and flow, and energize public areas by transforming them into welcoming gathering spaces infused with elements significant to Maui’s history and culture that will strengthen the Hawaiian essence and presence within the shopping center. The center will remain open throughout the renovation, and regular activities including signature concerts, cultural entertainment, and special events will continue as scheduled.

The Hawaiian sense of place and design elements for The Shops at Wailea take their cue from the Hawaiian saying, “Maui no ka ʻoi,” exclaiming Maui’s excellence above all others.  The transformation draws inspiration from the Wailea landscape, taking guests on a veritable grand tour of the island’s beauty and bringing focus on Haleakala as its majestic backdrop. Mimicking the flowing landscape, the property is separated into five distinct zones beginning with the focal entrance at Wailea Ike and Wailea Alanui Drive, which represents the volcano’s peak, the “Upper Mountain” luxury wing, the “Middle Valley” retail space, the “Lower Valley” gathering and events area, and the entry gateway “Trailheads.”


These zones also have cultural significance as they relate to Wailea. The words – “wai,” meaning “fresh water” and “Lea,” the mythical goddess of canoe building – influence the center’s design. The existing waterfall that cascades from the Upper Mountain to the Middle Valley will be updated as part of the renovation, representing the water that flows toward the valleys. The story of canoe making is also recognized in the design, with the canoe form and materials such as koa wood and rope being revealed in seating platforms, planter shapes, woven furniture, and sail canopies. From the triangular representation of Maui’s highest and most famous mountain, to the patterned weaving of lauhala, to the ʻukukoʻakoʻa (coral polyp) in Kanaloa’s briny expanse, each design element pays tribute to splendor of The Valley Isle. 

The design modifications were also thoughtfully conceived to invite guests to linger and enjoy the passing time. In the Lower Valley, the existing fountain will be removed to create a large center lawn and walkway, as well as a raised wooden stage surrounded by canoe-inspired seating ideal for special events. Renovation plans will also open up the entryway “Trailheads” and store facades to allow for a more free-flowing, organic design.

“This extensive renovation will give The Shops at Wailea a new look and feel reflective of its standing as South Maui’s premier shopping and dining destination,” said Rosalind Schurgin, CEO of The Festival Companies, the leasing and management company for The Shops at Wailea. “As we work toward this full center revitalization, we look forward with anticipation as we aim elevate the guest experience by introducing thoughtful design elements and enhanced gathering spaces for our community, while simultaneously welcoming exciting new restaurants and shops and unveiling store upgrades and expansions alongside our tenant partners who have grown with us over the years.”

New opportunities totaling 1,465 square feet for retail kiosks and cafes will be added to the internal gardens, and numerous areas will be reworked to enhance event and gathering places by creating inviting open space within the Upper Mountain, Middle, and Lower Valley zones.

The Shops’ renovation is just one part of the center’s ongoing revitalization. The Festival Companies has continued to elevate the guest experience by introducing a variety of new tenants and expanded retail spaces, most recently welcoming classic American clothing brand J.McLaughlin, renowned surf and skate retailer Volcom, bespoke kitchen design company Poggenpohl Kitchens Hawaii, specialty women’s boutiques Imrie and Keliki, leading retailer of fashion and prescription eyewear Maui Sunglass, and Lineage Maui, while supporting major store expansions for anchor tenants such as lululemon athletica, Martin & MacArthur, and Lappert’s Ice Cream. In 2020, The Shops at Wailea looks forward to welcoming new tenants including luxury boho fashion and accessories retailer Johnny Was, while expanding dining destinations with the addition of Ways & Means Oyster House, an award-winning seafood concept that will unveil its first location on Maui with a 4,800 square foot oyster bar, and Island Vintage Coffee, which will debut a 1,600 square foot café and shave ice concept including a full breakfast and lunch time menu.

A nationally recognized innovator of retail properties, The Festival Companies manages development and leasing for The Shops at Wailea and will spearhead the project through its expected completion in November 2020. The Festival Companies is honored to work with the following partners on The Shops at Wailea’s revitalization project: Architects Hawaii Limited (AHL), Nordic PCL Construction, and Burton Landscape Architectural Studio.