Manoa Treasure

A classic Manoa estate offers a tranquil space with a view

In Manoa, where waterfalls and rainbows abound, a treasure awaits nestled at the foot of the Koolaus.

Amid the growing landscape of screaming cookie cutter-style mansions squeezed into zero-lot-line parcels, this Hawaiian-style estate with New England influences stately presides over more than a half acre of lush tropical grounds in preferred lower Manoa – where the valley mist is ever so slight.

With high ceilings, fireplace, crown molding and ohia wood floors throughout, its walls tell quiet tales of a Hawaii-gone-by captured in ambiance within its 1,900 square feet. Yet, it is a discriminate contemporary, with an integrated Bose sound system being one of many touches blending past with present. Shown by Anne Oliver of Coldwell Banker Pacific Properties and priced at $3.9 million, French doors and windows command vistas of its rolling emerald lawn, Diamond Head, Waikiki and the Pacific beyond.

Built in 1930 by an architect for his own use, the three-bedroom, two-bath home with separate maid quarters transferred ownership only once, into the loving hands of one family for three-quarters of a century. Blessed with great bones, a 2005 renovation required only gentle nip-and-tuck by award-winning interior designer Kathy Merrill Kelly, who with Darcey Builders strove to keep its integrity intact.

The atrium-style kitchen, however, received the grande dame treatment, with modernization melding seamlessly down to glass-knobbed cabinets reminiscent of the 1930s. Of course, only state-of-the-art appliances would do: a Sub-Zero Wolf gas range and, behind facade, refrigerator/freezer, Fisher Paykel double-drawer dishwasher and Bosch washer/dryer. Expansive glassless, screened windows, guarded by Elite laser beam security system, usher in breezes and beckon guests toward a walnut butcher block-surfaced island to take in garden views.

Rich with history, Manoa was once a haven for Hawaii royalty and continues to be for those with discerning tastes who kick off their shoes here. Yet prestigious schools, four-star restaurants, theaters, shopping and world-renowned beaches are just minutes away.

The best show in town, however, may be from the gracious lanai at nightfall as twinkling stars dance with the lights of Waikiki.

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