Oceanfront Options – The Gold Coast
Prior to the 1960s when condo development began on the half mile of oceanfront property known as the Gold Coast, this choice slice of upscale real estate was occupied by single family homes and beach cottages, some the primary residences of kamaaina families. Most were razed to make way for the new structures, such as the estates of the Castle family, now the site of the Elks and Outrigger Canoe Clubs. The “Castles” surf break was named for this kamaaina family, one of many who made the Gold Coast their home during the early to mid 1900s.
However, a number of architecturally distinguished homes have survived and are now included in a special historic district as well as the State and National Registers of Historic Places. In 1987, a collection of 15 homes classified as the “Honolulu Tudor/French Norman Cottages Thematic Group” was listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Built between 1923 and 1932, the houses are characterized by “Olde English” or French Norman design styles that often include half timber and stucco facades, casement windows with diamond panes, and high pitched roofs. Many are the work of prominent architects and builders of the period, including Hart Wood, Earl Williams, John Morley, and J. Alvin Shadinger.
One of the homes in a group clustered on the Gold Coast has been listed for sale by Coldwell Banker Pacific Properties Realtor Liz Perry for $4,890,000. Designed and built in 1932 by Earl Williams, the home has been completely renovated by Kerr Michaels, well known for their remodeling and reconstruction of both single family homes and condominiums in the area.
The three story, oceanfront home is 1,820 square feet under roof augmented by decks and lanais, both covered and uncovered. The home is entered from Kalakaua Avenue at street level where the main living and dining areas, kitchen, powder room, utility room, a small lanai, and the garage entrance are located. An interior stairway leads to the second level, originally divided into two small bedrooms but subsequently converted into a large bedroom/bath suite. On the third floor are a bedroom, bath, and open lanai designed to take advantage of the sweeping ocean views and nighttime “skyscapes.”
“While the home has been completely modernized, great care was taken to preserve its historic elements and details,”
Perry said. “All three levels open up to the beautiful ocean views, but the view from the third level is truly spectacular. Sunrises, moonrises, the surf breaks, and all the ocean activity with surfers and marine life, including whales in season, create an ever changing panorama. The night-time view is another spectacle with the lights of Waikiki flickering on at sundown and the weekly fireworks displays at the Hilton Hawaiian Village.
“Having grown up in the area, I’ve always had an affection for these ‘fairy tale’ homes. Although the Gold Coast condos are among the best oceanfront options available anywhere in Hawaii, there are many buyers who have a preference for single family home living. This is one of only eight houses with ocean frontage between the Kainalu and 3019 Kalakaua and currently the only one listed for sale.
“The integration of the old and the new on the Gold Coast which, as they say, is continually reinventing itself, is what makes the neighborhood unique and fascinating. It is also extremely convenient and offers so many options for outdoor activity…swimming, surfing, kayaking, and snorkeling are literally steps away from the house. Across Kalakaua Avenue is
Kapiolani Park with picnic areas and public tennis courts. Private tennis courts are located across the park at the Diamond Head Tennis Center. This is a great neighborhood for jogging, biking, and dog walking. Two private clubs as well as our favorite kamaaina restaurant, Michel’s, are very close. It takes only about 15 minutes to walk to the heart of Waikiki with its vast variety of restaurants and shops.
“An aspect of life on the Gold Coast that I always like to emphasize is that it is truly a neighborhood. People get together for picnics in the park, group swims, surfing, tennis, and outings with their dogs. Over the years, residents…many second and third generation…have played an active role in preserving the sense of community that makes it special and desirable. We really consider it a privilege to live here.”
Perry noted that the home is not part of an association, hence incurs no common area maintenance expense, and is eligible for a tax exemption based on its historic status. She and co-listor Coldwell Banker Pacific Properties Realtor Associate Suzy Hemmings are showing the home by appointment and at open houses (next open house Sunday, April 12).