After 60 years in business, Pali Lanes calls it quits due to COVID-19's toll

Andrew Gomes, The Honolulu Star-Advertiser
·2 min read

Mar. 12—Pali Lanes has lost a four-year fight to stay in business.

The Kailua bowling alley and its landlord announced Thursday that the toll from COVID-19 is too much to endure, and so the 60-year-old business will end June 30.

"It is with great sadness that we have to close the bowling center, " Pali Lanes co-owner Daniel Sylva said in a statement.

Fellow co-owner Arthur Machado thanked customers and the community for loyal support.

"I will miss seeing the leagues, school groups, senior bowlers and special-needs teams the most, " he said.

Pali Lanes is one of only a few remaining bowling alleys in Hawaii where such recreation facilities have dwindled in recent decades.

Local real estate investment firm Alexander &Baldwin Inc. acquired the land under Pali Lanes in 2013 as part of acquiring major Kailua landlord Kaneohe Ranch.

In 2017, A &B announced it would be redeveloping the property. But the company held off after community blowback that included Pali Lanes supporters delivering a petition with more than 5, 000 signatures to A &B's Hono ­lulu headquarters.

A &B let Pali Lanes continue its month-to-month lease terms and below-­market rent.

Pali Lanes owners approached A &B about the closure and expressed gratitude Thursday for the accommodations, but previously said that the iffy situation inhibited their ability to invest in the business and improve operations.

A &B said it wishes the bowling alley's owners and employees the best ahead, and that it will explore ways to preserve the building.

"We appreciate the Kailua community's affinity for Pali Lanes and have worked closely with the owners by providing financial assistance in 2018 and 2019 as they sought to maintain a viable business and granting additional considerations in 2020 during their mandated shutdown, " Lance Parker, A &B chief real estate officer, said in a statement. "We have seen the impact of COVID on Hawaii's economy and the closure of numerous long-standing kamaaina businesses."