Homes for the Luxury Lifestyle
Third in a series
The Makiki Heights neighborhood is a virtual showcase of architecturally distinguished kamaaina homes, many of them built by families whose names are linked to the economic and political history of Hawaii.
Fortunately, subsequent generations have continued to preserve and update many of these estates, a significant number of which were built by members of the Cooke family.
Phil Spalding III, who lived in the home at 2411 Makiki Heights Drive that is now the Honolulu Museum of Art, noted that the first family member to “move up the hill” was George Cooke, who served in the Territorial Legislature and managed Molokai Ranch. “George and his wife Sophie Judd Cooke built their house around 1912…Sophie was the founder of Hanahauoli School at the bottom of the hill,” Spalding said. “When my great grandparents Anna Rice and Charles Montague Cooke made the Honolulu Academy of Arts the beneficiary of their Beretania Street property and art collection, they moved to Makiki Heights. Other Cooke family members subsequently built homes on Makiki Heights Drive.”
The home at 2447 Makiki Heights Drive, listed by Choi International at $5,400,000, was built by Philip and Alice Cooke Spalding in 1925 and remodeled and expanded by Vladimir Ossipoff FAIA in the l950s for Anna Karen Cooke and Ralph B. Johnson. National Register of Historic Places commentary states, “The Cooke-Spalding home is architecturally significant as a well preserved example of a large bungalow residence built in the 1920s. The building is distinctly regional in character with deep lanais and easy access to the outdoors. It reflects a high degree of craftsmanship in its construction and use of materials. Remnants of original landscaping and of a pergola planted with hau trees along the edge of the property remain.” The 51,039 square foot property includes a main residence with a roofed living area of 5,459 square feet and an 888 square foot cottage. It overlooks a coastal panorama with Diamond Head in direct view, the city of Honolulu below, a broad sweep of ocean, and forested hillsides.
A former Cooke family home at 2457 Makiki Heights Drive designed by architect Albert Ives and built in 1957 is co-listed by Coldwell Banker Pacific Properties Realtors Matt Brummel and Doug Shanefield at $2,645,000. The single level, 3,316 square foot home with an approximately 1,500 square foot lanai and private courtyard opens to valley, mountain, and Diamond Head-ocean views. It was renovated in 1985 by prominent designer Jack Adams for InterIsland Resorts president Dudley Child, a client of Coldwell Banker Pacific Properties Realtor Maggie Walker. “Dudley bought the home in 1985 from radio and television executive Bob Berger,” Walker said. “It had originally been built for Dagmar Cooke so she could be near her family after her husband Richard A. Cooke died. Her mother ‘AK,’ Anna Karen Cooke Johnson, lived in the estate next door. Adams designed the living room as a showplace for Dudley’s art collection and created an absolutely magnificent master bath. I think it’s still one of the most exquisite Hawaii homes of that era.”
Matt Brummel noted that the current owners updated major living areas and created new spaces, while retaining the home’s distinctive structural features and quality detailing.
“Among the new additions is a custom-designed art hanging system, so this would be a very desirable home for someone with an art collection,”
Brummel said. “A home theater with a state-of-the-art audio/visual system is adjacent to the first master bedroom. The floor plan has been designed for indoor-outdoor living and oriented to maximize views…which it does successfully, even though the house is single level.
“The surrounding landscaping includes an Asian-influenced garden just outside the master suites and bamboo grove that can be viewed through frosted glass in the new master bath. Probably, the signature landscape feature of the home is a nearly century-old monkey pod tree at the center of the circular driveway. Although the entire house can be opened up to the cool breezes and views, it’s very private. The lanai that runs along the entire back of the house borders forested conservation land.
“I can’t emphasize enough that this home offers the best of both worlds…a quiet, serene natural setting five minutes from downtown. I’m sure the Cooke family could have chosen to build their homes anywhere, but they chose Makiki.”