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SF Chronicle - Vacation Retreat Becomes Lanai Home

Posted March 14, 2013 | Categories: Press, Interior Design

Written by Beth Hughes

Photography by Matthew Millman 

 

 

For a San Francisco native raised in the chilly, foggy Avenues, something close to heaven appeared decades ago off the bow of the SS Lurline, a posh Matson line steamer on the San Francisco-to-Honolulu run.

 

Hawaii - sunny with beaches of white sand lapped by water so welcoming a boy could swim year-round. Both grandmothers might be San Francisco natives, but Hawaii was his special place, a revelation where warmth caressed his soul.

 

Thus began a lifelong love affair with the islands. Throughout marriage and a move to sunny, warm Marin County to raise three daughters, the visits to Hawaii continued. Hawaii was not only his place; it was their place, the place outside the Bay Area.

 

And as retirement approached, the stars aligned when the couple spotted an advertisement for oceanfront property on Lanai in the Wall Street Journal. "We'd been there, and we'd seen it," said the boy's wife, a Larkspur native, who, like her husband, prefers to remain anonymous to protect the family's privacy. "We knew it was hard to find property on the water, so we thought we'll go and see what they had."

 

The let's-check-it-out trip turned into a let's-write-a-check moment as the Pacific Ocean provided a sparkling backdrop for views of Kahoolawe and the Big Island.

 

That was 1997. Today, the kid describes himself and his wife as "grandparent-type people," and the couple's second home on Lanai epitomizes the easy, unforced fusion of indoor and outdoor, Eastern and Western sensibilities that are the hallmark of Hawaiian style.



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