Honolulu Real Estate Lawyer

Real Estate

US News & World Report, Best Law Firm - Tier 1 Real Estate Attorneys

Starn O’Toole Marcus & Fisher is a Honolulu-based real estate law firm built on a foundation of focus and experience in, but not limited to, Hawaii real estate law. Our transactional attorneys represent owners, developers, buyers and sellers of developed and undeveloped real estate property in Hawaii, the US mainland and internationally.

Each member of the transactional team has been rated AV Preeminent® by Martindale-Hubbell®, by their peers for achieving the highest standards in professional ethics, integrity and legal knowledge. Members of the team have been recognized by Best Lawyers in America®, Chambers and Partners USA Leading Lawyers for Business, and selected to the Hawaii Super Lawyers® list.

Our goal is to provide innovative solutions and powerful negotiations in all aspects of complex real estate transactions.

Hawaii real estate attorneys at our firm have opened doors for domestic and international business, hotel and resort and development clients by helping them navigate Hawaii’s complex land use and permitting laws.

Hawaii real estate transactional services include drafting and negotiating purchase and sale agreements, strategic advice to buyers and sellers, assistance with structuring transactions and financing, conveyances, security instruments, negotiations for the issuance of title insurance and endorsements, conducting and coordinating complex due diligence investigations, interfacing with labor and tax counsel, and working with escrow companies through closing.

Our law firm also represents landlords and tenants in a variety of leasing matters involving commercial leases. We draft and negotiate ground leases, development leases, retail leases and office space leases.

Results Focused Hawaii Real Estate Law Attorneys

DIRECTORS

Peter Starn has been named a Best Lawyers in America®, “Lawyer of the Year” in Honolulu, in the practice area of Administrative/Regulatory Law, recognized by Chambers and Partners USA Leading Lawyers for Business for Real Estate and Corporate Law, and selected to the Hawaii Super Lawyers® list for Real Estate Law.  Mr. Starn has practiced law for over 45 years, with a particular focus on the hotel and resort industry. Mr. Starn is a former Naval Aviator and a board member of the Pacific Aviation Museum Pearl Harbor.

Kenneth B. Marcus has been selected to the “Top 25”, Hawaii Super Lawyers® list, in Chambers and Partners USA Leading Lawyers for Business, and Best Lawyers in America®, "Lawyer of the Year" in Honolulu, for his work in Real Estate Law. Mr. Marcus is highly respected for his expertise in structuring complex hotel management agreements and authored the chapter for the Hawaii State Bar Association Real Estate Manual. He is a member of the prestigious International Society of Hospitality Consultants (ISHC). Mr. Marcus served as vice chairman of the State of Hawaii Stadium Authority from 2004 to 2012, and has served as an officer and board member for numerous civic and charitable organizations.

Duane R. Fisher has been recognized by Best Lawyers in America®, “Lawyer of the Year” in Honolulu, in the practice area of Corporate Law, and selected to the “Top 25”, Hawaii Super Lawyers® list and Chambers and Partners USA Leading Lawyers for Business, for Real Estate Law.

Trevor A. Brown is recognized by Best Lawyers in America® for both business and litigation matters, named a Best Lawyers in America®, “Lawyer of the Year” in Honolulu, selected to the “Top 25” Hawaii Super Lawyers® list and named a “Litigation Star” by Benchmark Litigation. Mr. Brown is often called upon to work on client matters that require business and litigation strategy. Mr. Brown has particular expertise in working with trust related matters, and has successfully represented many clients in matters that required both transactional and litigation experience.

Ivan M. Lui-Kwan has been named by Best Lawyers in America®, “Lawyer of the Year” in Honolulu, in the practice area of Government Relations Practice, and has a long standing AV Preeminent® Rating from Martindale-Hubbell®. Mr. Lui-Kwan was the recipient of the 2014 “Lifetime Achievement Award”, given by Pacific Edge Magazine. Mr. Lui-Kwan was volunteer chairman for Hawaii’s largest public works project, the Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transit (HART).

Norman H.Y.Cheng is Managing Director of the firm. Mr. Cheng is in Chambers and Partners USA Directory of Leading Lawyers for Business, selected to Hawaii Super Lawyers® list, and is rated AV Preeminent®, Martindale-Hubbell’s® highest rating possible for his skill and integrity. Mr.Cheng has particular expertise assisting family owned businesses of all sizes, and is on the board of the Iolani Schools Alumni Association.

SENIOR REAL ESTATE COUNSEL

Christina N. Ohira concentrates her practice in the areas of real estate and commercial transactions and is rated AV Preeminent® by Martindale-Hubbell®. Ms. Ohira graduated among the top students in her class from the William S. Richardson School of Law, University of Hawaii at Manoa, and is an active member of the Hawaii State Bar’s Real Property and Financial Services Section.

ASSOCIATES

Lindsay E. Orman represents clients in both litigation and transactional matters. Ms. Orman served as a law clerk to Chief Judge Emily Hewitt in the United States Court of Federal Claims in Washington, DC.

Real Estate Law Practice Areas (Non-exhaustive)

  • Commercial Leasing
  • Complex Real Estate Transactions
  • Conveyance & Security Instruments
  • Due Diligence Investigations
  • Escrow Transactions
  • Landlord-Tenant Lease Negotiation
  • Land Use Zoning
  • Leasehold Transactions
  • Financing
  • Strategic Advice to Buyers and Sellers
  • Title Insurance and Endorsements
  • Trust Matters
  • Purchase and Sale Agreements

What People Say About Us

"Starn O'Toole Marcus & Fisher has excellent lawyers.  They are great advisors, and are very professional and polished."
Best Lawyers in America®, Client Comment

"Starn O'Toole Marcus & Fisher is an excellent and responsive firm that understands business needs and issues."Best Lawyers in America®, Client Comment

"The best attorneys are at this firm.  They are sensitive to the client's needs, most professional and won all of my litigation cases.  I would highly recommend this law firm."
Best Lawyers in America®, Client Comment

"The thing that really makes them stand out is their business advisory capabilities — they are very insightful about the business side of real estate acquisitions."
Chambers and Partners USA Leading Lawyers for Business, Comment

"They always communicated and followed through. They were very thorough and detail-oriented."
Chambers and Partners USA Leading Lawyers for Business, Comment

"They're thorough, have very quick response times and are very knowledgeable."
Chambers and Partners USA Leading Lawyers for Business, Comment

"They have a culture of great character, discipline, efficiency, and thoughtful and creative problem solving."
Chambers and Partners USA Leading Lawyers for Business, Comment

“A trusted legal adviser to the hotel industry for many decades, Peter Starn is described as: ‘A very detailed fellow, very experienced and knowledgeable.’” He also handles matters involving commercial and office real estate.

Chambers and Partners USA Leading Lawyers for Business, Comment

“Excellent client service and an ‘invaluable knowledge of local legal precedents and customs’ make Kenneth Marcus a popular choice for real estate counsel.” As an active member of the International Society of Hospitality Consultants, hotel management is an important area of his focus.
Chambers and Partners USA Leading Lawyers for Business, Comment

Duane Fisher “provides locally tailored advice to international hotel chains as well as Hawaiian real estate developers and property owners. Sources praise his ‘strong work ethic,’ describing him as: ‘A good partner and adviser.’”Chambers and Partners USA Leading Lawyers for Business, Comment

“Clients single out Norman Cheng as a ‘very smart guy, extremely sharp and good at presenting positions.’ He advises on the transactional, construction and operational aspects pertaining to tourist and leisure developments.”
Chambers and Partners USA Leading Lawyers for Business, Comment