WAILUA — A group of thieves broke into the vacant Coco Palms Resort in Wailua Beach Saturday night, making off with four solid koa wood doors from the Queen’s Auditorium Hall.
“It just makes me sick,” Bob Jasper, manager of the Coco Palms site, said Tuesday. “(The doors) go back to when they first built Queen’s Hall.”
The magnificent hand-carved doors are 4 feet by 8 feet, weigh several hundred pounds and are valued at up to $50,000 each, according to Jasper.
“That evaluation comes from the different contractors that have come through there over the years,” he said. “They said (the doors are worth) at least that, maybe more. They are one-of-a-kind.”
To get inside the building, Jasper said the thieves “busted a whole wall out” and built a makeshift ramp, likely wheeling the heavy doors out on some kind of cart.
“It’s just so irritating,” he said. “I don’t know what they can do with them, unless somebody here is building a big mansion.”
After discovering that the doors were missing, Jasper said he spent a large part of Sunday night parked in the Brick Oven Pizza lot, just in case the culprits returned for the remaining four.
“I was just hoping I’d spot somebody driving their truck” with the doors in the back, he said.
In the 20-plus years since the Coco Palms shut down, Jasper said the property has been a magnet for thieves, who usually focus on collecting leftover copper wires and piping.
Larry Rivera, a Coco Palms icon, said he was disappointed to hear the news that and reminisced about what a beautiful place Queen’s Hall once was.
“(Now) there are thieves in there every day, destroying things, stealing things,” he said. “It’s really sad.”
In an effort to locate the stolen items, Jasper is asking the public to keep an eye out on Ebay and Craigslist, in case someone posts the doors for sale. He has also filed a police report and alerted local contractors.
Those with information about the stolen items are asked to contact the Kaua‘i Police Department at 241-1711.
While the KPD has been notified of the incident, a county spokesperson was unable to provide additional information on the case because a formal police report has not been filed by the property owner or manager.
• Chris D’Angelo, lifestyle writer, can be reached at 245-3681 (ext. 241) or firstname.lastname@example.org.