French Polynesian Government Selects Hawaii’s Group 70 International for the Development of the $3B Tahiti Mahana Beach Resort and Spa

Group 70 International Inc., one of Hawaii’s largest architectural firms, has been selected as the architect, interior designer and civil engineer on record for a nearly $3 billion resort development in Tahiti.
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Tahiti—Group 70 International Inc., one of Hawaii’s largest architectural firms, has been selected as the architect, interior designer and civil engineer on record for a nearly $3 billion resort development in Tahiti. Called the Tahiti Mahana Beach Resort and Spa, the project is expected to reignite tourism and revitalize the economy of French Polynesia.

The French Polynesian government is leading the project. The Tahiti Mahana Beach Resort and Spa is designed to be the largest resort in the French overseas collectivity. It will be constructed on 130 acres of land, on Tahiti’s west side, and will include five international class hotels, a timeshare, condominiums, a marina, an aquatic park, a casino, a convention center, theaters and luxury retail shops.

Almost 80 companies from around the world competed for the project. Group 70 made it to the final phase of the selection process, where its initial design plans were approved by the French Polynesian government over those of two other firms, from China and France.

Group 70 will now develop a comprehensive waterfront plan for the project. The Honolulu-based design firm announced it will form Group 70 Tahiti this year. This new French Polynesian corporation will be based in Tahiti and will service the project.

According to Group 70, the Tahiti Mahana Beach Resort and Spa will pay homage to the unique characteristics of the French Polynesian culture. Its design will be centered on the respected Polynesian voyaging tradition, with structures based on elements such as navigational charts and canoes. And the resort’s high-rise centerpiece will feature an iconic sail-shaped façade, as well as sustainable design elements.

Group 70 Chairman Francis Oda, FAIA, will lead the architecture team for the project. Vice Chair Sheryl Seaman, AIA, will lead the interior design team and Associate David Brotchie, P.E. will be in charge of civil engineering. Group 70 also said it will work with Hawaii-based Walters, Kimura, Motoda, Inc. on the landscape architecture.

“We were up against 77 other international companies for the contract, so we are extremely pleased to be back in this beautiful country and contribute to its expansive redevelopment,” Oda says. “We realize the significance of this project for Tahiti’s economy and livelihood of the entire community, so it was very important for us to work in collaboration with local professionals from Tahiti. We did not want to keep the benefits of such an unprecedented project exclusive to ourselves.”

Group 70 expects to break ground on the project in six to nine months. The Tahiti Mahana Beach Resort and Spa is scheduled to be completed in 2021.