In 2012, Oracle cofounder Larry Ellison — who stepped down from his position as CEO on Sept. 18 — bought a 97% stake in the Hawaiian island of Lanai for a reported $US300 million.
His enormous purchase includes pretty much everything on the island — small businesses like local restaurants, shops, and galleries, and large businesses like the two Four Seasons hotels on the island. He owns two golf courses, the community swimming pool, the water company, and a cemetery. He also owns nearly a third of all of the island’s housing.
Ellison’s plans for Lanai are still rather mysterious, and the transition of ownership to the Oracle billionaire has been controversial among residents.
Lanai has played a number of roles in a fascinating history stretching hundreds of years, and there’s plenty to see here.