Jack Tyrrell specializes in Kakaako, Honolulu, Hawaii luxury condo projects.

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Hollywood's Hot Hawaiian Getaways: An Island-by-Island Guide

Photo: Ward Village, Howard Hughes Corporation

Photo: Ward Village, Howard Hughes Corporation

The Hollywood Reporter published an island-by-island guide on some of the most luxurious experiences A-listers flock to when they visit the Hawaiian islands. From adventure experiences like zip-lining to outdoor beach activities to the most luxurious accommodations, the article is a short, succinct list of must-sees. Featured in the article is Ward Village's Waiea 36th-Floor Penthouse:

In Honolulu's Ward Village community, a new 36th-floor penthouse is on the market for $36 million and boasts more than 10,000 square feet of interiors and a private rooftop infinity pool. Owners can order room service from Nobu Honolulu on the ground floor. "A lot of my clients or their money managers are inquiring," says Burns. "The pool pours over the top of the building — going in it is nuts."

Ward Village continues to get international and national attention and press, and for good reason. With its prime location in urban Honolulu and within dynamic Ward Village, Waiea continues to be one of my favorite real estate investments in Honolulu right now.

Regarding the island of Oahu, the article adds,

Barack Obama's childhood home and the occasional residence of Brian Grazer and Dwayne Johnson — also has hosted Iger, Will Smith, Emma Stone, Amy Adams and Justin Timberlake. The Pacific Beach Hotel's $115 million reimagining is transforming the iconic Waikiki Beach property into Alohilani Resort Waikiki Beach (the presidential suite costs $979 a night) for a fall opening and will feature a pair of restaurants from Iron Chef Masaharu Morimoto.

The Ritz Carlton Residences, Waikiki Beach claims the only four-bedroom suite in Waikiki (up to $12,000 a night) and the exclusive 10-seat omakase restaurant by Tokyo’s acclaimed sushi chef Keiji Nakazawa ($300/person excluding beverages). “Old Hollywood loves that Waikiki/Kahala area because you wake up and see Diamond Head as your backdrop — that postcard view in front of your windows every day,” says Burns.

The Obamas and Zuckerberg have checked out Surfjack Hotel & Swim Club (room rates go up to $500), which recently opened and has "a lot of experiential takeaways," such as a music series, says Christian Schulz, co-founder of L.A. design firm Studio Collective (projects include The Bungalow Santa Monica). After the former POTUS and FLOTUS dined at its Mahina & Sun's restaurant from acclaimed chef Ed Kenney and ordered a Grey Goose martini — shaken with extra olives — the Presidential Martini ($14) was added to the menu.

The 2016 opening of Four Seasons Resort Oahu at Ko Olina brought attention to the west side of the island, which marketing director Nelson Hilton says is gaining prominence in the film industry, with Marvel filming down the road at the old Naval airport Kalaeloa. The Snatched crew, including Amy Schumer, enjoyed the pool and private sections during shooting. Hilton admits that Kourtney Kardashian's spring visit challenged discretion: "It's obvious when you have bodyguards surrounding you." The reality star stayed in the 17th floor's three-bedroom penthouse suite ($18,000 a night), where, from the roof, one can watch whales jumping.

Enjoying a surge is the North Shore, a sleepy surf town known for having some of the best swells on the planet and where sports stars and tech players are buying oceanfront estates for $3 million to $15 million. “I find a lot of our friends in the entertainment industry are drawn to the North Shore," with its "horses on the side of the road, acres of lush grass, rolling hillsides and crystal clear blue water with shell-lined shores,” says Oleema Miller, creative director and co-founder of MIKOH, which Jessica Alba wears on her Hawaiian vacations. Celine, Chanel and numerous restaurants are just one hour away in Waikiki, but she’s usually on the sand at Ehukai: “The stretch of beach is incredible — houses from Ke Iki beach to Sunset Beach are all stunning.” 

A popular elite venue for weddings, wellness retreats and private dinners is Sunset Ranch Hawaii, which has hosted several films, castmembers from Hawaii Five-0, Jack Johnson and most recently Hailey Baldwin. With its helipad, the 27-acre property gets guests making the hop from other islands.

Burns has rented to Bradley Cooper (Aloha); rentals now hit $10,000 a night. Grazer surfs the Banzai Pipeline, and Hawaii Five-O's Scott Caan grabs takeout with his family at Waialua Bakery or Storto's Deli for a beach day, which includes a visit to the tide pools at Shark's Cove and drinks at Haleiwa Joe's — "the jam," says Caan. He also likes Pupukea Grill for "some of the best food on the island." For cold coconuts and local treats, stop at the fruit stands at Kahuku; insiders also adore Hamachi Ponzu at Banzai Sushi and Elephant Thai, a food truck across from Shark's Cove. Payne's favorite lunch in Hawaii is the all-you-can-eat vegetarian buffet at ISKCON Hare Krishna Temple near Honolulu. "It's exquisitely clean food in a tranquil spot," the director says. "A friend turned me on to it."

Read the full article on the Hollywood Reporter here.



Wall Street Journal: Honolulu’s Kakaako District Is at the Center of a Building Boom

The Wall Street Journal did an excellent feature on Honolulu's Kakaako district here.  The article highlighted Waiea as the premiere example of luxury condo development underway in Honolulu.  The story not only shared the story of Waiea, but also touched on the greater Ward Village community, The Howard Hughes Corporations's dedication to respecting Hawaiian culture, and its contribution to building affordable housing.



The Exquisite Art at Waiea

Every architectural masterpiece building needs equally as refined art to complement it.  The art at Waiea is no exception.  As soon as you drive up the porte cochere and when you walk through the doors, you are greeted with two exceptional pieces.  We wanted to find out more, Mahalo to the top-notch concierge team at Waiea for providing us with the below information


Waiea Porte Cochere: Versus, 2011 Bronze, Sir Anthony Douglas Cragg


Tony Cragg (English, b. 1949) is a contemporary English sculptor known for his public commissions and installations throughout the world. Hailed as one of Britain’s foremost sculptors, his work routinely explores the relationship between people and our material world through works fabricated from traditional materials such as glass and bronze to the unorthodox, like street refuse. He then takes his chosen medium and human gesture as a point of departure and improvisation to create dynamic and energetic works with deftly styled formal technique. Additionally, his past as a lab technician duly informed his early work, in which he created sculptural forms reminiscent of the test tubes, containers and industrial debris he worked with daily. He received his BA from Wimbledon School of Art and his MA from the Royal College of Art.  (Reference: Paddle8, Inc.)

To learn more about his work, visit his website here.


Commissioned Figure, Waiea Front Desk Lobby, Jeff Colson


For the past ten years Jeff Colson has been working on a series of sculptures, paintings and watercolors that focus on the ephemeral quality of paper, as a subject and a material. Each work depicts a peripheral accumulation of paper, once symbolic of the day-to-day frenzy of one’s life. As a single sheet it is barely there, but when accumulated, it becomes physical and symbolically loaded as information and the systematization of our daily existence. Colson recognizes that in an attempt to control chaos we are sometimes caught in a manic and desperate spiral to prevent the inevitable, the absurdity of this “Catch-22” is evidenced by the accumulation of almost everything that we desire, regardless of need. Ironically, now with the digital age, paper is on the brink of extinction. This existential view has been the underpinnings of most of his work, coupled with a desire to make objects from memory with all its distortion—a personal validation of acquisition.

Using his own handcrafted techniques, the elements of the work are carved, cut, sawn, sanded, painted, welded, and molded to replicate an object that is recognized at once for its intent and as absurd as an art object. Stacks (2014-2015) is an amalgam of three happenstance load-bearing objects: desk, drop leaf table and a milk crate supporting an ever increasing and ominous mountain of paper stacked like performance bar graphs. These comically wobbly towers of paper, the residue of well-intentioned ambitions seem touching in their sincerity, and the act of attempting insurmountable odds, a universal experience. 

The artist lives and works in Pasadena, California. (Reference: Maloney Fine Art Gallery).

For more information, please visit Jeff's website here.


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Ward Village Waiea 2016 Grand Opening

It's official! The first residents of Ward Village's Waiea are moved in!  Kumu Hina led us in the blessing of this new tower.  We are thrilled for our clients, and grateful to have helped them purchase their exceptional units.  Congratulations to the Howard Hughes Corporation and Ward Village team on this landmark.  Waiea is the first condominium project to be completed in its wider Ward Village Master Plan.  Waiea truly is a new gold standard for luxury on the island.  If you are interested in securing your unit or rental, please contact my office today; don't miss out on the opportunity to be a part of Honolulu history in the making.

Photos by Cliff Lew, property of Jack Tyrrell & Company, Inc.

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Condo developer no longer pursuing long-delayed project

Courtesy of MB Acquisitions

OliverMcMillan, the developer of the recently completed Symphony Honolulu, has decided not to join the development team working on the mixed-use Aloha Kai project on the corner of Atkinson and Ala Moana, right across the street from Ala Moana Hotel where our Jack Tyrrell and Company, Inc. offices are located.  However, its developer, MB Property Acquisitions LLC will still be moving forward with the project, which houses the YMCA on its ground floor.

Read more from Pacific Business News, below:

San Diego-based developer OliverMcMillan, which developed a couple of Honolulu mixed-use high-rise projects, won’t be developing another one at the site of the YMCA of Honolulu Central Branch across from Ala Moana Center, the developer of the project confirmed to Pacific Business News.

California-based MB Property Acquisitions LLC has partnered with the Japanese firm Tama Home on the long-planned 37-story, 117-unit Aloha Kai development on Atkinson Drive.

OliverMcMillan was in negotiations to join the team to build the project. But Michael Blumenthal, president of MB Property, told PBN on Thursday that OliverMcMillan has “stepped to the side.”

“The project is still happening,” he said. “We’re in discussions with the YMCA in regards to the project. Our intention is to develop the condo tower and most likely the YMCA.”

Blumenthal said negotiations have been slow, and that the project may include more affordable units and market-rate units that would adapt to today’s pricing.

Construction on the project could start by early next year.

The project will include a new three-story, 30,000-square-foot YMCA Central Branch with no residential units, a swimming pool and a sophisticated aqua facility that will cater to seniors. It will also have five levels of parking with units being built atop those levels.

Aloha Kai encountered a delay after the developer asked for a zoning change to increase its height limit to 350 feet from 150 feet.

The project will encompass about 150,000 square feet of net saleable square footage with four units per floor and a boutique-like, private feel, according to Blumenthal.

Pricing is still being determined, although he said it is probably going to be around $1,400 per square foot, meaning that a one-bedroom unit of roughly 600 square feet unit would be priced around $840,000.

Aloha Kai also will have a rooftop pool, and all units will include lanais that overlook the ocean. There will be no commercial units in the project.

The condo portion of the project is expected to be completed in about two years.

PBN reached out to OliverMcMillan for comment.



Sneak peek at Symphony Honolulu’s retail and restaurant space Velocity

Screenshot of the entrance to Velocity at the Symphony Honolulu, Pacific Business News

With Symphony Honolulu Unit 4202 now ready for move-in, and we are excited about what is coming to its ground floor!  Pacific Business News has a great article updating us on what is to come to Velocity, the ground floor retail and restaurant space within the Symphony.  In addition to automotive dealership featuring European car models, there will be a restaurant featuring Italian wine, pizza and paninis; a women's dayspa, men's clothing store, and more!  Read below for full details:

The bottom floor of Symphony Honolulu, a new condominium tower at 888 Kapiolani Blvd., will host a car dealership by Hawaii-based JN Group Inc., two Italian restaurants by PJ Partners Inc. of Japan, a wine and food store, and two combination retail store/salons.

“Velocity is the retail piece of Symphony Honolulu. It’s a culmination of eight European automotive brands and eight European motorcycle brands,” Brad Nicolai of JN Group, the parent company of JN Automotive Group, told Pacific Business News in an interview. Cars sold in Velocity include Audi, JaguarLand Rover and other European exotics. Click on a photo to see a slideshow.

Velocity’s men’s clothing store, called Sixty-One, will include a men’s barber shop. The store is named after the year that Nicolai’s father, Joe Nicolai, founded JN Group in Honolulu in 1961. The men’s clothing store and salon will be the developer’s own retail concept. The group also operates Harley-Davidson clothing outlets on Oahu.

A woman’s boutique will include women’s spa services such as a dry bar and lash bar. Kristin Wood, founder of Honolulu salon Kristin Wood Lashes, will operate the salon.

Velocity will also host a wine and gourmet food store owned by a separate operator.

Nicolai said he envisions Velocity as a reflection of the piazza public markets found in towns and cities across Italy.

“Fortunately, through my travels through Asia, Europe and New York City, I’ve been able to get different conceptual ideas of how retail can work with residential, mixed-use projects,” he explained. “The unique experience we’re trying to connect is tied to my father’s Italian heritage, the experience of the old country.”

The developers also have plans to make the space a venue for performances.

“We took the piazza concept as a place of congregation,” Nicolai explained. “Kakaako has really lent itself to be a host to artisans whether it be fixed art or live art.” As the space is across the street from the Hawaii Symphony Orchestra, “it lends itself with music and arts.”

Velocity’s two leveled architecture will include a restaurant upstairs and downstairs. Restaurant operator PJ Partners, who also operate Honolulu’s Tonkatsu Ginza Bairin, have not released the restaurant names. Both will be under the direction of Italian Michelin Chef Gianpaolo Raschi.

The bottom floor of Velocity will host a “typical Italian wine and bar,” as Chef Maurizio Roberti described. Roberti is an Italian cuisine master chef currently based in Japan and is working to develop the restaurants. The bottom floor will also have an espresso bar.

In addition to drinks, the menu will include pizza and paninis. “People will call it fast food; we call it soul food. It’s fast on the go, but it’s still soul food,” Roberti said.

The downstairs restaurant will seat 40 to 50 customers, plus outdoor seating.

The ground floor will have a high ceiling and a mezzanine to showcase the automotive outlet’s Ducati motorcycles and Vespa scooters.

“You get the feeling that you don’t need to get on a plane and go to Italy, you can just come down to Velocity. That’s the kind of thing we’re trying to create” Roberti explained.

Ingredients for the restaurant’s menu will include a combination of locally sourced food and Italian imported cheeses and meats. The still-unnamed restaurant is reaching out to locally sourced food producers to partner with and specifically seeks a Hawaii-based gelato company. The restaurant is also looking into making its own Italian sausages to add to the menu.

Velocity’s upstairs area will have a cocktail bar and a formal dining restaurant. A large glass window will separate the kitchen from the dining area, so “you can actually see all the chefs at work,” Roberti said.

The upstairs restaurant’s menu will include predominantly seafood — Gianpaolo Raschi’s specialty.

Roberti described the menu as “simplified Italian, not the over-indulgent, swimming in oil, backstroke in tomato sauce or anything like that. It’s real Italian.”

Upstairs restaurant will include a VIP shift-table area that seats 10. Restaurant developers did not provide price points for menu items upon request. Combined, both restaurants will cover 6,000 square feet including the outdoor seating area.

The restaurant projects are looking to hire locally, and they have plans to create apprenticeships and a collaboration with Kapiolani Community College. “We would like to get the community involved in our project,” Roberti said.

Symphony Honolulu is a 388-unit condominium tower and has been open to unit owners since June. According to Nicolai, the tower’s units are about 96 percent sold out. JN Group developed the tower in collaboration with OliverMcMillan LLC.



The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf to open at Ward Village

Photo: Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf Hawaii / Foodland

Photo: Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf Hawaii / Foodland

There is going to be a new place to get your coffee and tea fix on as the popular U.S. coffee and tea cafe chain The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf comes to Ward Village's forthcoming South Shore Market, located below the T.J. Maxx.  Read more from The Pacific Business News, below:

The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf is opening a new shop in the space below T.J. Maxx at Ward Village in Honolulu that will include a mix of retail and restaurant tenants, Pacific Business News has learned.

The Howard Hughes Corp. (NYSE: HHC), the developer of the 60-acre Ward Village master-planned community in Kakaako, is currently building-out its “South Shore Market” project, which will include some tenants moving from Ward Warehouse, as first reported by PBN.

Last week, The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf pulled an $850,000 building permit with the City and County of Honolulu’s Department of Planning and Permitting for a new location at the South Shore Market at 1170 Auahi St.

Honolulu-based Sullivan Family of Companies, which also owns Foodland Super Market Ltd., owns The Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf Hawaii franchise.

The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf is owned by International Coffee & Tea, LLC, headquartered in Los Angeles. The chain has more than 950 stores in the U.S. and around the globe.

Some food and beverage and retail tenants from Ward Warehouse, which eventually will be developed into a high-rise luxury condominium project, are expected to open at South Shore Market, as well as other new tenants.

The South Shore Market project will include both indoor and outdoor seating, with the outdoor portion opening up toward a nearby park.

Todd Apo, vice president of community development for The Howard Hughes Corp., told PBN that the developer has no comment at this time.

PBN has reached out to the Sullivan Family of Cos. for comment



Howard Hughes to continue to pair world-renowned and Hawaii architects in future projects

Rendering of Gateway Towers, Howard Hughes Corp.

Rendering of Gateway Towers, Howard Hughes Corp.

The Howard Hughes Corporation has brought made its reputation for planning stunning projects and bringing in renowned local and international architectural firms into the fold for the design of its projects, including Waiea, Anaha, Aeo, and Gateway.  As Duane Shimogawa reports for the Pacific Business News, the development group plans to continue this strategy as it continues to plan more projects:

The Howard Hughes Corp., which has chosen to pair Hawaii and world-renowned architecture firms on its current Honolulu mixed-use high-rise condominium projects, is planning to utilize the same strategy for its future projects in the area, a top executive from the developer told Pacific Business News.

Its 60-acre Ward Village has development rights for 22 high-rise towers and up to 9.3 million square feet of mixed-use space, including more than 4,000 residential units and about 1.5 million square feet for retail and other commercial use.

Thus far, it has paired such Hawaii architecture firms as Architects Hawaii Ltd. and WCIT Architecture with such well-known architects from elsewhere as Canada’s James K.M. Cheng Architects, Chicago-based Solomon Cordwell Buenz and New York’s Richard Meier & Partners Architects.

Todd Apo, vice president of community development for Dallas, Texas-based Howard Hughes, told PBN that people should expect to see these types of partnerships for its future towers.

The developer already has started construction on its two luxury towers — Waiea and Anaha — as well as on its market-rate tower Aeo, which will include Hawaii’s flagship Whole Foods Market. It is also starting construction soon on its Ke Kilohana mostly workforce housing project at 988 Halekauwila St. across from Sports Authority on Ward Avenue.

The two luxury towers, as part of its Gateway project that will replace Ward Warehouse, are still on the table, with the first tower in presales mode.

Howard Hughes is looking into developing more workforce housing at Ward Village that would mirror its Ke Kilohana project.



Oahu condos selling faster than ever, competition for properties increasing

Photo: Hokua at 1288 Ala Moana, JTC Hawaii

Photo: Hokua at 1288 Ala Moana, JTC Hawaii

The Oahu condo market is hot, and JTC is at the forefront.  Read more from Pacific Business News, below: 

A jump in offers above asking price, key market indicators showing continued strong demand and the rapid pace of condominium sales indicates strong competition continues for available residential properties on Oahu, according to a new report.

Location’s Oahu Residential Real Estate Report for May, which analyzes sales activity in more than 350 neighborhoods on the isle, says 29 percent of the homes and 25 percent of condos sold during the month were “bid-ups,” which are offers accepted above the asking price.

A jump in offers above asking price, key market indicators showing continued strong demand and the rapid pace of condominium sales indicates strong competition continues for available residential properties on Oahu.

In addition, condos are selling faster than ever, with a median of 16 days on the market, the lowest number since summer 2005.

Median prices for May were $715,000 for single-family homes, up 2 percent from May 2015, and $378,000 for condominiums, up 1 percent.

Months of remaining inventory, or MRI, an indicator of supply and demand, is very low, another indicator of the Oahu real estate market becoming more competitive, the report says. If no new listings were to come on the market, the available properties would sell out in 3.1 months.



Hawaii Food and Wine Festival at Luxury Kahala Hotel

Last night, May and I had the pleasure of attending the Hawaii Food and Wine Festival's closing event, the Hukilau Beach Cookout, at the luxurious Kahala Hotel with our great friends, Scott and Patsy Saiki and Jill and Jay Kauka, as well as Hawaii's Governor David Ige and our lovely First Lady Dawn Ige.  11 of Hawaii's best chefs, including Alan Wong, Andrew Le, Ed Kenney, Elmer Guzman, George Mavrothalassitis, Lee Anne Wong, Mark "Gooch" Noguchi, Michelle Karr-Ueoka, Roy Yamaguchi, Vikram Garg, and Wayne Hirabayashi, gathered for the evening, serving their dishes fireside in the relaxing outdoor ambience.  It was a great evening of friends and a wonderful showcasing of the culinary talent that Hawaii has to offer!