There is no denying the magnetic draw of the Hawaiian Islands. Crystalline waters fade from aquamarine to turquoise to lapis. Stunning bays and shorelines are outlined in white, pink, red, olive green and even black sand beaches. Remnants of volcanic rock formations add an anthropological tone to any visit. Lush greenery is a welcome byproduct of the rainy season.
And while each of the eight main islands that make up the North Pacific archipelago have their own unique and alluring attractions—Maui has Haleakala and the Hana Highway; Kauai has Waimea Canyon and the Na Pali Coast; the Big Island has the safe but active Kilauea Volcano; and so forth—Oahu has one of Hawaii’s most famous landmarks: Diamond Head. (Not to mention the Gold Coast, the bustling district of Waikiki and massive North Shore swells for surfing.)
And what better way to enjoy every bit of Oahu’s best than from a sky-high penthouse?
World-renowned architect James K. M. Cheng’s stunning Waiea tower is the unmistakable flagship of a 60-acre, master-planned coastal community known as Ward Village in Honolulu. Named “Master Planned Community of the Year” by the National Association of Home Builders, Ward Village is a transformative urban development championed by the Howard Hughes Corporation, who are taking every opportunity to solidify Honolulu’s place as a stunning island metropolis.
Like the rest of Ward Village, Waiea is certified LEED-ND Platinum by the United States Green Building Council, a designation granted for energy-efficiency, numerous green spaces and sustainable designs. In fact, the Village is the largest LEED-ND Platinum project certified in the United States, and the only one in Hawaii. Even the building’s design speaks to a respect for Hawaii’s abundant natural elements. The building’s wave-like facade and reflective glass are a nod to the name Waiea, the Hawaiian term for “water of life.”
Waiea encompasses 174 residences, including 10 townhomes, 12 penthouses, and two otherworldly grand penthouses. Residents enjoy unrivaled amenities: a welcoming outdoor lounge area overlooking a spacious infinity pool with cabanas and outdoor grills; a children’s play area and dog park; the ultra-modern fitness center and spa; the library, theater room, indoor golf simulator, and chef’s kitchen with catering available to building residents. And while all those amenities easily topple lesser-stacked developments, upon taking a secure private elevator to the 35th floor grand penthouse, it’s clear there is more to see.
In the words of James Cheng, the penthouse is “a villa in the sky.” Between Cheng’s stunning architecture and the interior design efforts of iconic American designer Tony Ingrao, there is still a fantastic opportunity for the future resident to contribute, too. Discerning owners can take advantage of an available design credit, choosing customizable design finishings that have been carefully considered for a buyer set on living their best.
So, what does the living the best in Waiea look like, exactly? It’s a generous six bedrooms and six-and-a-half bathrooms spread across 8,532 square-feet of living space. It’s swathes of rooftop lanai with a private, ocean-facing infinity pool—for swims under the bright Hawaiian sun or a blanket of stars at will. It’s floor to ceiling windows and 360-degree views of bright blue ocean, Diamond Head in the distance, Oahu’s lush mountains as well as the lively streets of Waikiki.
The grand penthouse is seamless outdoor living in its purest form, where preparing pineapple-glazed ham and season-less salads isn’t reserved for a chef’s kitchen tucked away down a corridor. Hosting friends and family without sacrificing privacy is effortless thanks to the spacious layout and patio area. Relaxing with a beach-ready page turner on an indoor sofa or poolside lounger is punctuated by the occasional, mid-chapter glance at an endless ocean-meets-sky backdrop.
Downstairs, Ward Village is ready to entertain with myriad walkways, shops and impressive restaurants (although dedicated shoppers may prefer nearby Ala Moana Center) if you ever decide to descend from the clouds, that is.