The Hawaiian House Now

The Hawaiian House Now

2007 (excerpted)




Stone and wood form the base of the cottage construction, along with a copper roof that by natural oxidation will be rendered a green that subordinates to the landscape. "Its natural color recedes rather than advances to the viewer," says Howerton (architect David Howerton), who notes that copper is also long-lasting in the punishing ocean trade windows.


Interior designer Jon Staub used color-saturated fabrics and wall treatments to balance out the neutral tones of the building materials. "The home is beautiful and very woody. If you'd put neutral tones on top of it, the whole thing would just blend out. There's such simulation here between the interiors and the exterior setting that you want to bring those greens and blues and garden reds inside."


Imperial plaster walls, pūne`e (daybeds) covered in beautifully woven French fabrics: the pleasures of Kūki`o are rich and yet subtle. There is no marble, no grand entry. The entrance is an `ōhi`a wood gate wonderfully overgrown with vine. It takes just long enough to open, that you catch the sundrenched scent of flowering trees on both sides. The effect is one of anticipation and the slightest touch of drowsiness.


"It's all about resort living," says Staub. "Instead of sitting upright in your seat, you're slightly slouched, perfectly happy and almost about to fall asleep. That's how this home feels."