As of Today, Mark Zuckerberg and 5 Other Billionaires Now Basically Own Hawaii


Mark Zuckerberg bought 700 acres on the island of Kauai. (Photo: Alamy)

In a billionaire move that nearly out-Bransons Richard Branson, Mark Zuckerberg just bought part of Hawaii. Yeah, he just bought part of a state.

The Facebook founder dropped $100 million on two adjacent chunks of land on Kauai’s north shore. Forbes confirmed that Zuckerberg purchased 700 acres on Hawaii’s fourth-largest island to build a private sanctuary for his family. Zuckerberg must have a really big family.

So what, exactly, does $100 million get you in the Aloha State? The first piece of land, Pila’a Beach, features 393 acres of pristine white-sand beaches. The second plot, the Kahu’aina Plantation, is a 357-acre former sugarcane plantation that boasts 2,500 feet of shore and a working organic farm.

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Mark Zuckerberg purchased 700 acres of land in Hawaii for $100 million. (Photo: AP)

But it looks like Zuckerberg isn’t looking to widen his social network. The plantation currently houses about two dozen small huts used by locals as vacation spots or permanent homes. It’s rumored that Zuckerberg is paying these residents large sums of money to vacate so that his compound can be totally secluded. How much do you wish you owned one of those huts right now?

Zuckerberg’s team is staying hush-hush about the acquisition. A Facebook spokesperson said, “We don’t comment on rumors and speculation, but thank you for reaching out!” 

Under Hawaiian law, the beaches on his land will have to remain public, as the state has no private stretches of sand. So if you want to hang out with the 32-billion-dollar man, just head to Kauai. Maybe he’ll build a sand castle with you.  

Here are some of the other bigwigs who own land in Hawaii:


Lanai lookout on the island of Lanai  (Photo: Thinkstock)

Larry Ellison

In 2012, Oracle founder Larry Ellison bought the island of Lanai. No, we didn’t stutter. In true billionaire fashion, the software tycoon dropped an estimated $500-$600 million to buy Hawaii’s sixth-largest island (the actual figure was confidential). In reality, Ellison owns 98 percent, or 87,000 acres of the Polynesian island, where he reportedly plans to invest in tourism. The previous owner of Lanai was David Murdock, the billionaire behind Dole Foods who appropriately nicknamed it Pineapple Island.

Steve Case

You can take the boy out of Hawaii, but you can’t take the Hawaii out of the boy. Former AOL Time Warner chairman, Steve Case, was born in Hawaii and graduated from Punahou School. In 2000, he paid $26 million to buy 36,000 acres on the historic Grove Farm, which is a former sugarcane plantation. He also acquired the majority share of Maui Land & Pineapple, which owns 26,000 acres in Hawaii.

Michael Dell

Michael Dell doesn’t own an island, but don’t feel bad for him. The founder, chairman, and CEO of Dell owns a $64.7 million (assessed value) home in the Kukio development on Hawaii’s big island. The Raptor Residence, as it is called, sits on 4.3 acres of land and has seven bedrooms, several bathrooms, and gorgeous waterfront views.


The home of Michael Dell on the Big Island (Photo: David Croxford)

Kamehameha Schools

Forget a booster club, this school system has enough land to pay its bills. Kamehameha schools is a private school system in Hawai’i founded by Princess Bernice Pauahi Bishop, a royal descendant of Kamehameha I. Bishop owned 9 percent of Hawaii, which totals more than 365,000 acres spread out across the islands. When she died, she left the expansive area of land to the school system in an endowment.

Alexander and Baldwin

In 1831, Samuel Thomas Alexander and Henry Perrine Baldwin purchased 561 acres on the island of Maui to cultivate sugarcane. Today the company of Alexander & Baldwin owns about 87,000 acres throughout the state. It still produces Maui Brand sugar, but it has added the Matson shipping company and luxury residential properties to its holdings.

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