Howzit Howard: Blackstone Group

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - The Wall Street Journal reports the Blackstone Group, main owner of Hilton Hotels, has struck a deal to buy Pearlridge Mall for $242 million. Pearlridge is 38 years old and has almost 200 stores. The Wall Street Journal also says Blackstone is moving to take a five percent stake in general growth, owner of Ala Moana Center and Victoria Ward Limited.

Alaska Airlines says this winter it will launch service to Honolulu from Bellingham, Washington. Bellingham is a city of 80,000 people just south of Vancouver, B.C. Canadians can save on vacation costs by flying here from a U.S. airport to duck Canadian aviation taxes. Alaska has been increasingly putting its eggs in the Hawaii basket and has also announced deeply discounted fares for tickets bought in the next two weeks for travel taken by November 10.

Kona Brewing Company, founded in 1994, is merging with the Craft Brewers Alliance of Portland, Oregon. The two companies have been marketing partners for nine years. The management and work force is unchanged, the brewing stays in Kona, and the local owners now have a stake in Craft Brewers Alliance.

Elizabeth Echols was director of policy for Google and later worked with the U.S. Green Building Council. She'll head SBA operations in California, Nevada, Arizona, Hawaii and Guam.

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