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The Coconut Chronicles

The MauiRealEstate.com Newsletter

 

Volume 5, page 2 ...

 

Coconut Community Spotlight: Wailuku

Located on the east flank of the West Maui Mountains and abutting the North Shore of Maui, Wailuku is Maui's home to medical facilities, state and local governments and county courts. It is also one of Maui's most historically rich communities. While Wailuku fell upon some hard times starting in the 50s and 60s, it is experiencing a renaissance with redevelopment and renovation in the downtown area and new development on its peripheries.

Wailuku History

Wailuku has been one of the most populous and important communities in Maui since the pre-contact period. The cool east flank of the West Maui Mountains and abundant water made the area popular for native Hawaiians. High Chief Pi'ilani made the area a political center. Later, Kahekili, the last powerful pre-contact area chief on Maui, chose to call the Wailuku area his home.

Kahekili's reign came to an end in 1790 when Kamehamea invaded from the Big Island. The massive battle raged in Wailuku for two days with neither side gaining a decisive advantage. Kamehamea turned the tide in his favor when he brought a canon into the fray. Kahekili and the Maui warriors were forced to retreat into the narrow and steep walled confines of the Iao Valley. Maui's warriors were slaughtered and the Iao River was said to have run red. On and off skirmishes continued for the next couple of years as the people of Maui fought to retain their autonomy. In 1795, Kamehamea invaded again, subduing the island once and for all.

While Wailuku remained a population center throughout the 19th century, the community experienced an era of diminished political significance. In 1800 Kamehamea moved to Lahaina and made it the capital of Hawaii. The 19th century was also a time of increased influence from Anglos. Captain Cook arrived off of Kahului Bay in 1778, but the first missionaries did not arrive in Wailuku until 1832.

The overthrow of the Hawaiian Government in 1904 resulted in the adaptation of American Style government in the islands. Wailuku was chosen over Lahaina as the county seat of the islands of Maui, Lanai and Molokai due to its more modern water system. Wailuku's restored political prominence coincided with a surge in industry. The central valley of Maui became a focal point of sugar cane production and the Wailuku area grew to accommodate the needs of field hands, the Lunas that oversaw field operations and the Sugar Barons.

The Sugar Barons resided in an area bounded by North Main and High Street, establishing this area as one of the most prominent addresses on the island for the better part of the twentieth century. Company stores and Japanese owned markets led to the initial growth of store fronts starting in the mid to late 1800s. By the early 1900s, the intersection of main and market was the busiest on island and a reflection of Wailuku's growing prosperity. The Iao Theater was the first movie theater built in all of the Hawaiian Islands in 1927.

While Maui may be next to paradise, it is not immune to some of the problems of the mainland. Suburban communities and strip malls led to the decay of many American urban centers after World War II. Wailuku faced some of these problems as well as a diminished sugar cane industry. Many of its old historic buildings began to fall into disrepair.

Fortunately, many of the beautiful structures that remain from these bygone eras have avoided the wrecking ball and restoration began to occur throughout the mid to late nineties and continues today. The most important first step was the restoration of the Historic Iao Theater in 1995. The Wailuku area redevelopment plan will ensure that older structures are preserved and restored.

For a good overview of Wailuku and Maui history, it is worth making a visit to the Bailey House Museum on Main Street in Wailuku. The museum is also the headquarters for the Maui Historical Society.

Wailuku Activities

Wailuku's central valley location means that it is a short distance from everything. Within a short drive is the windsurfing and surfing of the North Shore, the beaches of South Maui and the beaches near Lahaina in West Maui. The community in and of itself has much to offer. Wailuku is the gateway to the beautiful Iao Valley and the West Maui mountains. There are short hikes in and around the Iao Valley state park and the Iao Stream offers the chance to cool off in a number of swimming holes. Waiehu Beach Park and surrounding areas offer a couple of great places to play in the waves if you like to surf or body board. The Waiehu Golf Course in Wailuku is the island's only municipal course and both Sandalwood Course and Dunes at Maui Lani are within ten minutes of Wailuku. The Dunes Course has been selected as one of the 5 best kept secret golf courses in America by Golf Digest. The restored Iao Theater features performances from local theater productions. The Maui Arts and Cultural Center is located right on the outskirts of Wailuku in Kahului. This beautiful facility and its attractions are the envy of much larger mainland attractions. Before taking in a show, there are some good restaurants downtown such as the Saigon Café and Saeng Thai.

Wailuku Real Estate

Wailuku's central location, government facilities, hospitals, natural beauty and history are all an important factor in the area's desirability. Wailuku is also an area with tremendous diversity in housing. From starter condos, to ocean front and mountain estates, Wailuku has it all.

Wailuku Condos
Wailuku has a number of condos that offer affordable housing opportunities. One bedroom condos start near $150,000 for units in Puuone Terrace and Puunone Hale Alii. Two bedrooms are available in the $200s in complexes like Mount Thomas, Iao Gardens and Iao Parkside. Iao Parkside has some 3 bedroom condos in the $300s.

Wailuku Town
In and around downtown Wailuku, you are likely to find some old Hawaiian Style Plantation Houses. Some of the older structures in need of TLC will run in the 300s and 400s. Houses that have been restored to their original charm will vary in price depending on size, location and extent of remodel. Lower priced remodels will run in the 400s with larger kamaiana plantation style homes running in to the 700-800 price range. Another area that has older architecturally significant homes is Upper Sand Hills.

Waiehu
There is a good bit of diversity in the Waiehu Area. Ocean View and Harbor View both are communities that have some nice properties with great views of the North Shore and Haleakala. There are also a number of Oceanfront properties in the area. The entry level for oceanfront homes is lower in this area than in any other area on Maui. That being said, there are also a number of spectacular oceanfront estates. Prices range from the 500s to well over a million.

Wailuku Newer Subdivisions
There are some nice subdivisions that offer newer homes with nice modern amenities. Places such as Waiolani and Kaimana in Kehalani. Kehalani also has newer developments in the works like Ohi'a and Koa. Prices in these communities start in the upper 400s to low 500s.

Wailuku Heights
Nestled into the flanks of the West Maui Mountains is the subdivision of Wailuku Heights. Wailuku Heights offers luxury homes with spectacular views of the Central Valley, both coastlines, and Haleakala. Homes in this area range from the 700s to over a million dollars.

Note: Article was originally published in early 2005 and prices have not been updated. Contact Billy and Pete today for a Wailuku Real Estate Market update. Or you can check out the current MLS listings for Wailuku Homes for Sale and Wailuku Condos for Sale.

Taste of the Tropics

Night time can be a little bit cooler in Maui during January with temperatures in the 60s and even the 50s in places up in the upcountry. These cooler temperatures make it a perfect time for soups. Here is a favorite from Carla's Mom.

Roasted Chicken with Wild Rice Soup

1 (6 oz.) box long grain & wild rice mix (Uncle Ben's)

1 T. olive oil 1 ½ c. chopped red onion

1 c. chopped celery 1 c. chopped carrots

2 garlic cloves, chopped 1 (8 oz.) pkg. mushrooms, halved

¼ c. flour ½ t. dried tarragon

¼ t. dried thyme 2 c. water

2 T. dry sherry 2 (15.75 oz.) cans fat free chicken broth

1 (12 oz.) can fat free evaporated milk

3 c. shredded roasted skinless chicken

1. Prepare rice according to package directions, set aside.
2. Heat oil in a large Dutch oven over medium high heat. Add Chopped onion, celery, carrots, garlic, and mushrooms. Saute for 6 minutes or until onion is tender. Lightly spoon the flour, tarragon, and thyme into the onion mixture, and cook for one minute, stirring frequently. Add 2 c. water, sherry broth and evaporated milk; bring mixture to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer for 20 minutes of until slightly thick. Stir in cooked rice and chicken, cook for 10 minutes or until thoroughly heated.

Yield: 8 servings

Coconut Cultural Calendar

The following calendar highlights some of the cultural events on Maui at places like the Maui Arts and Cultural center and the Hui No'Eau Arts Center.

December 17 - February 5
Main Gallery, 1st floor exhibits
Proof Positive: New Prints from the Hui
Hui No'Eau

Monday- Tuesday, January 3-4
SHANGHAI CIRCUS
7:00 pm, Castle Theater
MACC

January 3 - February 7
Jewelry Making
J.B. Rea
Winter I: Mondays, 6 weeks
9:00 am - 12:00 noon
Hui No'Eau

January 4 - 25
Tiny Hands, Parent & Child
Jesse Stuart
Session I:
9:00 - 11:00 am
Age: 3-4
Hui No'Eau

Wednesday, January 5
Maui Film Festival - LIGHTNING IN A BOTTLE
5:00 & 7:30 pm Castle Theater
MACC

January 6, 7, 8 & 9
Copperplate Photogravure
Lothar Osterburg

Thursday & Friday
6:00 - 9:00 pm
Saturday & Sunday
9:00 am - 5:00 pm
Hui No'Eau

Thursday-Saturday, January 6-8
STOMP
MACC's Broadway Series

7:30 pm, Castle Theater
and Saturday, Jan 8, 2:00 pm
MACC

January 8- February 20
REMAINS OF A RAINBOW:
Rare Plants & Animals of Hawai`i

Often called "the endangered species capital of the world," Hawaii's varied ecological communities contain over a quarter of the plants and animals on the U.S. Endangered Species List. In this nationally-acclaimed traveling exhibit, David Littschwager and Susan Middleton's intimate photographic portraits of these endangered species invite viewers into a close-up view of their world.

Schaefer International Gallery
open Tuesday - Sunday, 11:00 am - 5:00 pm.
Also open before Castle Theater shows and during intermissions.
FREE Admission!

Opening reception Friday, Jan 7, 5:30 pm
with Susan Middleton and special guest Willam S. Merwin
Lecture/slideshow Saturday Jan 8, 11:00 am
with Susan Middleton, on the processes & techniques of the photography
MACC

Sunday, January 9
JOE COCKER "Heart & Soul" Tour
7:30 pm, Castle Theater
MACC

Tuesday, January 11, 7:00 pm
FREE LECTURE: What the Abstract Truth About Everything Has Nothing to do About Nothing
Tony Walholm
7:00 pm
Hui No'Eau

January 11 - February 15
Figure in Oil
Caleb O'Connor

Tuesdays, 6 weeks
10:00 am - 4:00 pm
Hui No'Eau

Wednesday, January 12
Free Lecture: Getting Ready for Art School
Ruth Jatib
6:30 - 8:30 pm
Hui No' Eau

Wednesday, January 12
Maui Film Festival - FADE TO BLACK
5:00 & 7:30 pm Castle Theater
MACC

January 13 - February 17
Make and Bake: Hand Building with Clay
Sarah Metz
Winter Session: Thursdays, 6 weeks
Age: 6 - 8
Hui No' Eau

January 13 - February 17
Clay for Kids: Hand Building & Wheelthrowing
Nancy Martel
Winter Session: Thursdays, 6 weeks
3:00 - 5:00 pm
Hui No'Eau

Thursday, January 13
LOUIS HAYES & THE CANNONBALL ADDERLEY LEGACY BAND
MACC's Tune In Series
7:30 pm, McCoy Studio Theater
MACC

Thursday, January 13
Maui Film Festival - WHAT THE #$*! DO WE KNOW!?
2:00, 5:00 & 7:30 pm Castle Theater
MACC

Friday, January 14
Warren Miller's IMPACT
7:30 pm, Castle Theater
Sports Expo 5:30 pm
Snow comes to Maui!
MACC

Friday- Saturday, January 14-15
KATHY COLLINS in Tita Out... One Mo'Time!
MACC's Local Voices- Talk Story Series
7:30 pm, McCoy Studio Theater
MACC

January 18 - March 8
Introduction to Drawing
Kit Gentry
Tuesdays, 8 weeks
6:00 - 9:00 pm
Hui No'Eau

January 19 - March 9
Advanced Stained Glass
Joshua Cox
Wednesdays, 8 weeks
6:00 - 9:00 pm
Hui No' Eau

Tuesday, January 18
TURTLERAMA
7:00 pm, McCoy Studio Theater
MACC

Wednesday, January 19
Maui Film Festival - BEING JULIA
5:00 & 7:30 pm Castle Theater
MACC

January 20 - March 17
Introduction to Ceramics
Jennifer Owen
Winter session: Thursdays, 9 weeks
9:00 am - 12:00 noon
Hui No'Eau

January 20
VISITING ARTIST
FREE SLIDE LECTURE:
Contemporary Japanese Batik

Betsy Sterling Benjamin
Thursday
7:00 pm
Hui No'Eau

Thursday, January 20
PILOBOLUS
Dance Series
7:30 pm, Castle Theater
MACC

January 21, 22, & 23
VISITING ARTIST
Rozome: Japanese Batik
Betsy Sterling Benjamin

Friday, Saturday & Sunday
10:00 am - 4:00 pm
Hui No'Eau

January 22 - February 5
Introduction to B&W Photography and Developing in the Darkroom
Brian Miller
Saturdays, 3 weeks
10:00 am - 2:00 pm
Hui No'Eau

Saturday, January 22
Halau O Kekuhi & Tau Dance Theater in HANAU KA MOKU
MACC's Pacific Connections Series
7:30 pm, Castle Theater
MACC

Sunday, January 23
An acoustic evening with LISA LOEB
7:30 pm, McCoy Studio Theater
SPECIAL GUEST: MAUI'S OWN GAIL SWANSON!
MACC

January 24 - March 21
Intermediate Throwing on the Potter's Wheel
Adam Field
Winter Session: Mondays, 9 weeks
6:00 - 9:00 pm
Hui No'Eau

January 24 - March 14
Watercolor I
Connie Adams

Mondays, 8 weeks
6:00 - 9:00 pm
Hui No' Eau

Wednesday, January 26
Maui Film Festival - AROUND THE BEND
5:00 & 7:30 pm Castle Theater
MACC

Thursday, Jan 27, 7:30 pm
Friday, Jan 28, 7:30 pm
Saturday, Jan 29, 3:00 pm & 7:30 pm
Sunday, Jan 30, 3:00 pm
BIG RIVER: The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
Castle Theater
MACC

Thursday, January 27, 7:00 pm
VISITING ARTIST
FREE SLIDE LECTURE:
Joyce Kozloff

Hui No'Eau

January 28, 29 & 30
VISITING ARTIST
Mapping Workshop
Joyce Kozloff

Friday, 6:00 - 9:00 pm
Saturday & Sunday,
10:00 am - 4:00 pm
Hui No' Eau

Jan 27, 28, 29 & 30
Photoshop I
Rick Allred

Winter Session:
Thursday, 6:00 - 9:00 pm
Friday - Sunday, 10:00 am - 4:00 pm
Hui No' Eau

January 28 - February 25
Abstract Oils
Tony Walholm

Fridays, 5 weeks
9:00 am - 12:00 noon
Hui No' Eau

Friday-Sunday, January 28-30
JAKE SHIMABUKURO
MACC's Local Voices - Mele Series

7:30 pm, McCoy Studio Theater
MACC

Saturday-Sunday, January 29 - 30
Maui Film Festival - INDIGO
1:00 & 3:00 pm, McCoy Studio Theater.
MACC

 

Continued in » Real Estate Market Update

  1. The Coconut Chronicles, Page 1
  2. Coconut Community Spotlight: Wailuku
  3. Maui Real Estate Market Update