Japanese Billionaire Prepares More Homes - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Japanese Billionaire Prepares More Homes

Genshiro Kawamoto Genshiro Kawamoto

By Kristine Uyeno

KAHALA (KHNL)- Japanese billionaire Genshiro Kawamoto continued his mission to help Native Hawaiian families in need.

He's getting ready to offer more families the chance to live in his multi-million dollar properties, rent-free.

Kawamoto will soon pick the five families that will move into Honolulu's richest neighborhood.

Right now, he's putting the finishing touches on an 8-room mansion on Kahala Avenue. Just next door sits another property he'll offer to another family. Both tenants will share a tennis court in the back.

"I'm just hoping it will succeed," said Kawamoto.

This part of the Japanese billionaire's quest to help struggling, Native Hawaiian families. Nearly 2 months ago, three West Oahu families moved into his other homes on Kahala Avenue.

"I think they're having a great time, yes?" he said.

Some Kahala residents support his mission. Others believe it's a publicity play.

But Kawamoto says he hasn't received any complaints from people who live in this neighborhood.

Kahala resident Janet Feeback questions his decision to move a family into a property across the street from her house, since people are currently living there.

"They've just been wonderful neighbors and I think it's real sad that he has to evict some people that are great tenants when he's got other empty properties down Kahala Avenue," she said.

"But those people are rich, they can go anywhere," said Kawamoto.

The real estate mogul is close to deciding which families will live in these homes. They'll only be responsible for the utility bills and could live here for up to 10 years. He hopes to have these properties ready by the end of June.

The real estate mogul owns many other properties in Kahala.

So what's next?

He wants to turn 5 of his other homes into museums, filled with art.

Kawamoto plans to let anyone visit and enjoy the atmosphere for free.

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