Community Information

Aina Haina-Kuliouou-Niu Valley, Diamond Head, Hawaii Kai-Portlock, Kahala, Kaimuki-Kapahulu, Palolo, Waialae-Kahala, Waikiki, Wilhelmina
The peaceful, eclectic, mid- to upper-priced neighborhoods of Aina Haina-Kuliouou-Niu Valley are tucked into the foothills and up the sides of Koolau Mountain ridges along Kalanianaole Highway. On the makai (ocean) side, the Maunalua Bay beachfront is graced with lovely beach parks, lavish homes and Paiko Lagoon Wildlife Sanctuary.The base of Diamond Head , the extinct volcano that is Oahu's most famous natural landmark, is embroidered with affluent homes and condominiums. At Kupikipikio (Black Point), the portion of the Diamond Head community that swoops out into the Pacific Ocean, the late billionaire Doris Duke built her beloved Shangri-La.
At the extreme southeastern tip of Oahu are the sunny Hawaii Kai-Portlock communities. Hawaii Kai is the California marina-style dream development of the late steel tycoon Henry J. Kaiser. Threaded through the community's picturesque canals are mid- to high-priced single-family residences,townhomes and condominiums, a marina, golf course and shopping center. The exclusive neighborhood of Portlock embraces the base of Koko Head crater.
This ideal location is where Kaiser built his 7.2-acre, $1 million waterfront estate in 1959. It sold last year for $19.7 million.
Another millionaire's neighborhood and one of the most famous communities in the world is Kahala, where elaborate front gates can cost as much as some people's homes. Upscale Kahala Mall caters to this discriminating population.
Kaimuki-Kapahulu are two of Oahu's most lively communities, dripping with appeal to yuppies. The houses along the neat, hilly streets have personality and character. Waialae Avenue, which is downtown Kaimuki, looks like 1940s-50s Main Street, U.S.A. Kapahulu's colorful businesses and restaurants face off across busy Kapahulu Avenue. Both areas have plenty of quaint coffee houses to keep the population energized and happy.
In the fertile depths of Palolo Valley, crops and orchids still grow. Working-class Palolo is a homey, multi-ethnic suburb of affordable homes. Each September, the community holds a good, old-fashioned Palolo Pride celebration in Palolo District Park.
For decades, the wealthy community of Waialae-Kahala has been the playground of royalty, movie stars and the rich and famous. The Kahala Mandarin Oriental Hotel is the legendary host of the world's discriminating travelers, and the Waialae Country Club is the stage for the $4 million Sony Open golf tournament.
The urban resort destination of Waikiki is Hawaii's major visitor attraction and an exciting place to live. On the mauka (mountain) side of the world's most famous beach is a self-contained neighborhood of high-rises, restaurants, shops, fun activities and entertainment.
Wilhelmina rises above it all like a jewel in an elevated setting. The well-established mid- to high-priced community of Wilhelmina Rise offers mountain ridge-high panoramic views of the blue Pacific and the glittering lowlands of southeast Oahu.

Ala Moana-Kakaako, Kapiolani, Makiki, Manoa, McCully-Moiliili, St. Louis Heights
The mostly high-rise condominium and low-rise apartment communities of Ala Moana-Kakaako are Oahu's major shopping and cultural centers. Ala Moana is home to Ala Moana Center, Hawaii's largest shopping megalopolis, with over 200 shops and restaurants in a setting of lush landscaping and colorful fish ponds.Kakaako is Oahu's cultural headquarters. The fine arts collections of the Honolulu Academy of Arts are here, as well as Hawaii's leading entertainment complex. Showcased at Blaisdell Center, Concert Hall and Exhibition Hall are the Honolulu Symphony Orchestra, live broadway shows, major concerts and exhibits and trade shows of all kinds.
The Kakaako waterfront is now the focus of highly significant,image-setting state activity. In the planning stages are a world-class aquarium, gathering place, Ocean Science Center and ocean park.
Wide, tree-lined Kapiolani Boulevard, with its affluent condominiums,office buildings and elegant auto dealerships, is the focal point of Kapiolani. Affordable low-rise apartments and older homes lie in a criss-cross of streets mauka (toward the mountain) of the boulevard.
Makiki marches up the side of the Koolau Mountains in a steady procession of high-rise condos and apartments at the lower elevations to expensive residences toward the top in Makiki Heights. About half way to the top is the stunning Contemporary Arts Museum, one of Honolulu's most novel and cultural places to dine.
Manoa means vast in Hawaiian, a perfect description for this deep valley. A neighborhood of mainly older homes with immense character and charm, thevalley's profuse vegetation is made more lush by frequent showers followed by spectacular rainbows. The University of Hawaii is located here, as well as Lyon Arboretum, the Manoa Valley Theatre and Manoa Marketplace, one of Oahu's loveliest little shopping and dining centers.
The close proximity to the University of Hawaii and Chaminade University campuses make McCully-Moiliili favorite haunts for local college students. The area is packed with student-friendly businesses and activities, mom and pop shops, and affordable to mid-priced low- medium and high-rise apartments.
Overlooking it all is St. Louis Heights where folks "view the scenery from their mountain greenery," as the old song goes. Waahila Ridge State Recreational Area, a 49.9-acre, pine-forested picnic site and hiking spot, is nestled in this neighborhood of older, established single-family homes.

Downtown, Iwilei_Kalihi Kai, Kalihi-Palama, Moanalua-Salt Lake, Nuuanu, Pacific Heights-Punchbowl
Downtown Honolulu is one of America's loveliest and most compact cities, with most of the financial and business districts and residential high-rises covering 12 square blocks.Exotic Chinatown is a part of downtown, but is in a charming world of its own. Iwilei, once Oahu's notorious red light district, is now the respectable home of such retail denizens as Hilo Hattie, K-Mart, Home Depot, and the charming shops, restaurants and movietheaters of the restored Dole Cannery.
Kalihi Kai is a crazy-quilt collage of tiny and tenacious older houses and aging apartment buildings, car repair shops, industrial businesses, and venerable mom and pop establishments. The neighborhoods of Kalihi-Palama are so similar, they're like conjoined twins.
What once was urban sprawl came and went a long time ago, leaving Kalihi and Palama with the lived-in look and neighborly feeling of real ohana. The world's greatest repository of Pacific and Polynesian research and artifacts is located here in the stone gothic confines of the Bishop Museum.
Moanalua-Salt Lake are as different as Kalihi-Palama are alike, with a major exception: the military presence. Both neighborhoods can certainly claim to be well protected. Moanalua has the Army's Fort Shafter on one side and the Navy's Red Hill Naval Reservation and the military's Tripler Medical Center on the other. Salt Lake is encircled by U.S. Air Force, Marine Corps and Navy bases, and low-cost military housing.
Moanalua residences are mostly single-family dwellings tucked away in lovely hills and valleys. Salt Lake, on the other hand, is almost all vertical with medium- and high-rise apartment dwellings springing up like cornstalks.
Nuuanu is as much a botanical garden as it is a wonderful place to live. Sudden rain showers swoop over the Koolau Mountains creating perfect mists for this community's profuse tropical vegetation.
Both the Pacific Heights and Punchbowl communities have the advantage of loftier perches going for them, creating spectacular views and cooler temperatures.
Both communities are less than 10 minutes from downtown, the State Capital Building, City Hall and Hawaii's principal state and federal buildings.

Kahaluu, Kailua, Kaneohe, Lanikai, Waimanalo
This is the side of Oahu that gets the most rain; hence, it's the most luxuriant in plant growth. The natural beauty of Kahaluu, the northernmost of these neighborhoods, is a spiritual experience.It's a tropical nirvana wedged between the incredible cathedral spires of the Koolau Mountains and the turquoise opalescence of Kaneohe Bay. Home prices vary from mid-range to expensive, with views that will take your breath away.
Kailua, the largest community on the Windward side, is Oahu'swindsurfing capital, and Kailua Beach is one of the world's most beautiful shorelines. The 42,000 lucky people who reside here enjoy a relaxed lifestyle in lovely, moderately priced neighborhoods, with excellent restaurants, parks, libraries, schools, shopping centers and a pleasant downtown.
Residents commute to work on the Honolulu side of the island via two beautiful conduits, the Pali and Likelike Highways.
The second biggest community, with 40,000 residents, is Kaneohe. Windward Community College and fabulous Hoomaluhia Botanical Garden are both here.
Mokapu Peninsula, which rests between Kaneohe and Kailua, is the home of Marine Corps Base Hawaii, formerly known as Kaneohe Marine Corps Air Station. In addition to moderately priced homes, Kaneohe has a wide selection of townhomes, condos and apartments. Both H-3 and Likelike Highway connect Kaneohe with other areas of Oahu.
You know you're in Lanikai when you see Moku Nui and Moku Iki, the two beautiful islands that are the idyllic landmarks of this affluent community. In 1924, the first neighborhood developers gave this prime beachfront property its name, which means "sea heaven." It's the perfect name for this heavenly place.
The down-home, shoes-off comfort of Waimanalo can be attributed to the fact that it has the largest Hawaiian population in Windward Oahu. Homes, townhomes, duplexes, condos, apartments and rent-to-owns are in the affordable category.
The setting is gorgeous: Lacy ironwood trees shade the white sands of Waimanalo Beach, with the primordial beauty of the Koolau Mountains forming an awesome backdrop.

Hauula, Kaaawa, Kahuku, Laie, Punaluu
This part of the Windward Coast leading up to the North Shore looks like the Hawaii about which people have always fantasized. Here are the modern versions of the sleepy little beachside towns and undulating coconut palms of old Hawaii, with glorious mountains on one side and the electrifying blue ocean on the other.Originally a tiny Hawaiian fishing and taro farming village where folks lived in grass huts, Hauula is now a charming little community of affordable single-family residences and condos. A sandy procession of beach parks lines the makai side, and a new beach pavilion and the newly renovated Hauula Shopping Center have townsfolk understandably proud.
The legendary crouching lion rock formation and the Crouching Lion Inn mark the north end of Kaaawa. Otherwise, you might not know you've been through town. Here, the steep, green cliffs of the Koolaus allow barely enough room beside this coastline-hugging stretch of Kamehameha Highway for the neat affordable to mid-priced homes of Kaaawa.
A former sugar plantation town, Kahuku still retains its warm-hearted plantation village personality. The old sugar mill is now a shopping center and the old plantation hospital is a modern medical facility. Today's townsfolk live in homey, modestly priced residences and turn out en masse for Kahuku High School athletics and activities.
The community of Laie is surrounded by opulent natural beauty, but is most renowned for its world-famous inhabitant: the 42-acre Polynesian Cultural Center, one of Hawaii's most popular visitor attractions. The cozy community is home to slightly more than 5,500 people. Residences are in the medium-price ranges and are served by a newly expanded shopping center and the only movie theater and hotel in these parts.
Right now, Punaluu is the tiniest community of them all, but it looks like growth is on the way. The Pacific Ocean isn't the only thing lapping at these shores. Lots are on the market, developers are developing and a few fee simple homes are for sale in the middle to upper price range. Three alluring beach parks are mainly used by the few residents and vacation condo renters who are lucky enough to live in this divine place.

North Shore, Waialua
Mother Nature blessed the North Shore with some of the most breathtaking scenery in the world. This is rural Hawaii, with giant, sweeping vistas of pristine green countryside, never-ending azure ocean and miles of sandy beaches edged with tropical trees. This must be one of the most peaceful, beautiful places on earth. But, wait, what is that? A 20-foot wave?Welcome to the Surfing Capital of the World. The endless North Shore summers are self-indulgently laid-back and leisurely. But come November through April, the once-tranquil beaches are pounded by monster waves reaching bone-crushing heights. In come droves of big-wave surfers and wannabes, and the North Shore rocks.
Most of the visitors stay in vacation homes and bed and breakfasts, since the North Shore big surf vicinity has no hotels. The only luxury resort in the area is the Turtle Bay Hilton in Kahuku.
Communities on the North Shore are small, homes aren't cheap, and it's a long way to everywhere from here. Still, a lot of the North Shore populace commutes to other parts of Oahu to work and returns here to scoff at those who live any other way.
The neighborhoods of Waimea, Sunset Beach and Kawailoa are all tiny and situated precariously close to such world-famous surfing spots as Banzai Pipeline, Kimmieland and Gas Chambers. But residents take heart in the fact that the land has been there as long as the waves.
The large, monied community of Pupukea is perched on a ridge above the action, with to-die-for views of it all.
The undisputed star of North Shore neighborhoods is Haleiwa, acharismatic community proud to be a part of the State List of Historic Places.
Once a playground of Hawaiian royalty and weekend getaway ofVictorian-era vacationers, today's Haleiwa is a quaint hamlet of rustic Paniolo architecture, charming shops, art galleries and restaurants. "Baywatch Hawaii" is also filmed here, which makes it a favorite people-watching spot.
Waialua is a former sugar plantation town that's undergoing a well planned metamorphosis, including new businesses in renovated buildings at the old Waialua Sugar Mill. The new Waialua Town Master Plan calls for revitalization that retains the community's country character. This can only be good news for Waialua, a good-natured, home-town kind of place, with moderately priced homes, good schools, a post office, library, recreation center and lovely beach parks.

Pineapples may be prickly, but the town they created is as easy to take as a pineapple smoothie.In earlier times, the area was attractive to ancient Hawaiians who liked its cooler climate and plentiful game. On the land now occupied by the U.S. Army's Schofield Barracks, Oahu chiefs once trained their armies.
Wahiawa can lay claim to having the island's coolest temperatures because it's situated on the highest terrain. Oahu's tallest peak, 4,000-ft. Mt. Kaala is part of Wahiawa.
The Dole pineapple empire took root here over 100 years ago when James Dole planted his first 61 acres in Wahiawa. Pineapple is still grown around these parts and the Dole Plantation Center welcomes nearly a million visitors a year.
" Welcome to Wahiawa" signs on the edge of town are emblazoned with gold and green pineapples. And it should come as no surprise that Wahiawa High School's colors are leaf green and pineapple gold.
Looking past its pineapple culture, Wahiawa is about as small-town comfy as it gets. Homes here come in all shapes, sizes and prices, from townhouses, condominiums and patio homes to single-family dwellings in friendly neighborhoods.
Wahiawa Community Hospital is a deserving source of great pride, and a brand-new fire station is scheduled for completion this year.
Just about every known fast-food chain has moved into town, mingling with cafes and restaurants featuring delicious local fare.
It's a family kind of place, with movie theaters, shopping centers,baseball, softball and soccer fields and a ton of recreational activities,including freshwater boating and fishing on Lake Wilson to the south.
No doubt about it. Wahiawa-town is a cool slice of pineapple heaven.

Makaha, Nanakuli, Waianae
Far west Oahu is a study in contrasts, corraled as it is between the dry, craggy Waianae Mountains and the watery depths of the blue Pacific Ocean.This was perfect for the first Hawaiians who sought shelter here over a thousand years ago. They felt that the majestic mountains provided a safe wall of isolation, allowing them to feed from the ocean and maintain an independent lifestyle.
Today, this part of Oahu is the closest thing to a true Hawaiian place on the island. Proud and independent like their forbears, Waianae Coast communities nevertheless opened their hearts to diverse cultures, welcoming others to the ocean-loving pleasures and simple lifestyles enjoyed by centuries of Hawaiians.
All of the Waianae Coast shares 20 miles of what many feel are the island's most beautiful, unspoiled beaches. Certainly, Oahu's best big-game fishing is off this coast.
Most Waianae Coast homes, condos and apartments are in the affordable price range, although a few expensive homes with incredible ocean views dot the landscape.
The soul of the community of Makaha is celebrated in the richness of its progeny. Two of Makaha's finest were living legends until their untimely deaths in the late '90s. The Queen of Makaha, surfing sensation Rell Sunn, and Israel (Bruddah Iz) Kamakawiwo'ole, angelic-voiced lead singer of the Makaha Sons of Niihau, embodied the sweetness and spirit of this beautiful community.
Two golf courses and one of Hawaii's most ethereal restored heiaus are located in Makaha. For years, the Makaha International Surf Championship, one of the world's major surfing events was also held here.
You can still talk story about surfing and the wonders of Makaha with living legend Buffalo Keaulana. This veteran of 36 years as an Oahu lifeguard and father of two champion surfers hangs out every day on Makaha Beach.
Most Nanakuli residences are unpretentious 2- and 3-bedroom homes, about half owner-occupied and half affordable rentals. This good-hearted neighborhood is a beach picnic, backyard barbecue, potluck dinner kind of place. A word to the wise: If you ever get invited to a Nanakuli wedding or first-year baby luau, don't miss it. The festivities are legendary.
The community of Waianae is home to one of the most unusual healing centers in all of the islands. The Waianae Coast Comprehensive Health Center has served the area for 30 years, with a broad range of health and healing services deeply rooted in Hawaiian values. All Waianae communities are as inextricably linked to Hawaiian values as they are to the ocean.

If there is any community on Oahu that looks like an all-American city, it's Mililani. It's an exemplary town of well-kept homes and streets, modern shopping centers, movie theaters, churches and fine schools. It's a breath of fresh air, with beautiful parks, tennis courts, ball fields, hiking and biking trails, swimming pools and recreation centers. And it was all part of the plan.
Faced with a shrinking demand for the pineapple and sugar grown on this part of west central Oahu, landowner Castle & Cooke turned to real estate development. This was a great location for the company to start a new town. The elevation rises from 700 to 1,000 feet above sea level, creating cooler temperatures and interesting topography, ringed by magnificent mountains and interspersed with rugged ravines.
In 1961, the company began creating the master plan for a fully functional satellite city. Their dream was to build a well-designed community with none of the gangly urban sprawl that had marred other areas.
Today, Mililani is a tribute to the builder's dream and the people who fulfilled their own dreams by making Mililani their home.
Mililani's consistently high property values are assured by its own people. The group in charge is the Mililani Town Association, a nonprofit organization made up of all the town's homeowners. Their purpose is to guide and safeguard design standards, oversee the maintenance of all common areas, and run the six recreation centers.
The 35,000 citizens of Mililani enjoy a vast range of styles and price ranges in single-family homes, apartments, townhomes and apartments. The iron-rich soil that once yielded acres of sugar cane and pineapple now nourishes yards and gardens and the lush landscaping that grows in proliferation throughout Mililani's 3,500 acres.
For more information about anything under the Mililani sun, go to It's a well-planned Web site for a model city.

Waikele, Waipahu, Waipio
For decades, central Oahu was agricultural country. Waipahu was a sugar plantation town, Waipio was a dot on the map, and Waikele didn't exist at all. In the 1970s and '80s, things began to change. Sugar started to fail as a viable crop and there was nothing economically stimulating enough to take its place.That's when the people-growing business of real estate development took hold, waking up this sleepy part of Oahu, and creating hope for new families to buy their own homes and begin new lives. Waikele and Waipio rest on slightly elevated land, offering vast views all the way from Diamond Head to the Waianae Mountains. These are communities of beautifully designed homes, townhomes and condos in lower to middle price ranges, with a nice selection of affordable rentals also available.
Many residences in these neighborhoods are priced to give young couples just starting out their first chance to buy a home.
The community of Waikele is built around gently curving, tree-lined streets, beautiful Waikele Golf Course and Oahu's leading premium factory outlet center. The 50 discount outlets, shops and restaurants of Waikele Shopping Center include such celebrated names as Donna Karan, Tommy Hilfiger, Saks Fifth Avenue, Anne Klein, Brooks Brothers and Banana Republic.
Indeed, exciting retail offerings are part of the big attraction of thecentral portion of Oahu. The island's newest and largest Costco is located in Waipio's Gentry Business Center.
The Waipio Peninsula is the site of the City and County of Honolulu's Waipio Soccer Complex, providing playing fields for 23,000 local youngsters and future national and international soccer competitions.
Waipahu has undergone several incarnations over the years, from fishing village to wetland farming area to sugar town. Part of the community's rich and colorful history can be viewed in the 50-acre Waipahu Cultural Garden Park, a must-see attraction. Visitors are able to experience what life was like from 1850 to 1930 in the park's Hawaii Plantation Village.
Waipahu Mill Town Center now occupies 60 acres of the old sugar mill property. It combines a light industrial business park with a retail center that also utilizes the area's plantation past as a visitor attraction.

Ewa, Kapolei, Makakilo
Who'd have thought it? Vibrant, people-filled communities on this flat Ewa plain where the tallest things around, other than a few plantation houses, used to be sugar cane tassels? Well, look around. Developers are building some sweet neighborhoods where sugar cane once grew.Beginning in the early 1960s, the opening of Campbell Industrial Park brought thousands of new job opportunities to southwest Oahu. Two petroleum refineries, a steel fabricating plant, cement plant and many other industrial enterprises started an economic upsurge in this part of Oahu that just kept growing.
With more jobs came more homes, and now there's no end in sight.Developer Gentry Homes is building several first-class, master-planned neighborhoods in central and west Oahu. The company's Ewa by Gentry development in Ewa and Ewa Beach include the new Huelani and Terrazza communities.
Haseko's 1,100-acre Ocean Pointe Ewa master-planned residential development now under construction is a 15- to 20-year project that will include Ewa Marina, the largest marina in the state.
The 32,000-acre, master-planned urban center of Kapolei rivals Honolulu in size. The development won a National Developer of the Year award for owner-developer Campbell Estate. Thirty years of planning went into the creation of Kapolei, and the rewards are beginning to pay off big-time.
In addition to the innovative new homes in The Villages of Kapolei, now completed are Kapolei's major master plan projects: a business park, shopping center, a 16-screen theater complex, medical park, commercial work centers and complexes for essential government services. These eagerly anticipated state and city office buildings are now relocating many government offices and employees to the new city of Kapolei.
New schools, a regional police station and fire station are all in place, and the first phase of the Kapolei Public Library is complete. There's more on the drawing board, so for the latest, sign on to
Makakilo, located on the southern slopes of the Waianae range, is up off the Ewa plain, providing residents with enviable Ewa and ocean views. At elevations of 580 to 1180 feet above sea level, Makakilo is cooler and breezier than its lowland neighbors.
Since development of Makakilo began in 1959, a diverse inventory of homes is available. Older, more reasonably priced homes, combined with brand-new residences, townhomes and luxury abodes, provide a wide selection.
Schuler Homes has joined the growing list of developers building well-designed new homes in Makakilo, as the economic outlook for west Oahu moves from cautiously optimistic to very excited.

Aiea, Pearl City
The city of Aiea covers almost 11,000 acres, from Pearl Harbor northward to the Ewa Forest Reserve.Up Aiea Heights Drive is 384-acre Keaiwa Heiau State Recreation Area and Aiea Hiking Trail, a serenely beautiful forested locale, carpeted with pine needles and dotted with lovely picnic areas.
This community of 32,000 started out as a sugar plantation town, and the presence of the Aiea Sugar Mill provided the hard-working people with a proud identity.
In 1998, following the demise of the sugar industry, the sugar mill was demolished, but the people prevailed. On 19.4 acres of the former sugar mill site, a new Town Center has risen like a phoenix from the ashes. Here, the people of Aiea are able to embrace their plantation past as they look forward to the future with renewed vigor.
Within both the city limits of Aiea and Pearl City are all of the amenities one would want in a home town. The comfortable and attractive homes are generally in the moderate price range. The schools and churches are sources of community pride. The area offers public libraries, recreation centers, lovely parks, ball fields, medical centers and dental services, and, if anything, an overabundance of places to shop.
Pearlridge Center, which lies between Kamehameha Highway and Moanalua Road, is a mammoth air-conditioned shopping complex built in two sections and linked by a monorail.
The history of Pearl City differs from Aiea in that it was settled by independent farmers and fishers. Some raised watercress, rice, taro and lotus in the wetlands and grew pineapple and sugar cane on the hillsides.
Others made their living by harvesting the plentiful fish and crabs from the unpolluted waters. Pearl City got its name from the oysters containing pearls that were discovered in Pearl River.
The introduction of cattle ranching in the uplands in 1840 stripped the land of its vegetation, washing soil into the lagoons, wiping out the oyster population. Later, Pearl River was dredged to form Pearl Harbor.
Pearl Peninsula, which jutted out into Pearl Harbor's Middle and East Lochs, was where wealthy people built elaborate mansions, whiling away their weekends and summers picnicking and watching yacht races with scores of their friends.
The bombing of Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941, changed things. Pearl Peninsula and its environs became the property of the military, and Pearl City began its forward march to becoming the full-fledged community of almost 47,000 people that it is today.

2138 Algaroba St.
Honolulu, HI 96826