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Burger King reopens in Kailua-Kona


Burger King is returning to Kailua-Kona, nearly 10 months after the fast-food restaurant closed its doors in the fall of 2013.

The restaurant reopened Wednesday in its original location on the corner of Palani Road and Kopiko Street. Kazi Foods operates the Kailua-Kona location and recently secured a new lease for the space.

“We are excited and happy to bring back Burger King to this familiar location for our Kailua-Kona customers and our employees,” Burger King Hawaii Managing Director Denise Yamauchi said in a prepared statement.

Burger King Hawaii opened the Kailua-Kona location at the intersection of Palani Road and Kopiko Street in December 1984. The Kona location closed in October 2013 after an agreement could not be reached on a new lease.

The two dozen employees who were displaced by the restaurant’s closing in November 2013 had been offered jobs at other Burger Kings on Hawaii Island. They have now been offered their old jobs back at the reopening location.

Burger King Hawaii has four other restaurants on the Big Island: two in Hilo, and one each in Waimea and Pahoa.

Kazi Foods also announced that it will open a new Kentucky Fried Chicken, KFC, in the former Wendy’s restaurant on Palani Road.

There are currently 32 Burger King restaurants in Hawaii: 21 on Oahu, four on Maui, two on Kauai, and five on the Big Island. Twenty-four of the restaurants are owned by Kazi Foods, the largest local franchisee. Four military base restaurants are owned by AAFES and four airport locations are owned by Host Marriott.