Hawaiian idyll – Calgary Herald



In such an idyllic location, Brent Herrington wanted to make sure he did it right.

There would be no second chances.

Kukui’ula, a 1,500-home community created by Kukui’ula Development Co., is the first new development on the Hawaiian island of Kauai — the Garden Island — in more than 10 years, and has been designed to blend with the surrounding plantation-style residences on the sunny southern coastline of Kauai.

“We spent six years of intense planning and design before breaking ground on the club, spa, and golf club in 2008,” says Herrington, president of Kukui’ula.

“Our vision is to create the finest luxury community in Hawaii, but with a relaxed, casual feel, a strong emphasis on family, and a commitment to the gracious plantation style of Kauai.”

Kukui’ula is being carefully designed and laid out on about 400 hectares between the famous Poipu Beach to the east, the National Tropical Botanical Garden to the west, and the historic plantation town of Koloa to the north.

The grand opening of the upscale community was held earlier this month, and Herrington says more than 80 sales have been recorded to date.

There are various neighbourhood cottage collections available in the luxury community, ranging from 1,500 to 3,800 square feet and starting at $2.2 million US. Custom home sites are priced from $1 million.

Aside from the natural amenities being offered by the ocean, beaches, and rolling hills surrounding it, there are the manmade amenities that add to the luxury lifestyle of residents.

The private $100-million club facilities sitting above the ways of Kukui’ula Bay is the social and recreational heart of the community and consists of The Plantation House with lanais from which to watch sunsets, a world-class spa, golf clubhouse and the Tom Weiskopf-designed 18-hole golf course, swimming pools, and a 20-hectare community farm.

It was the need to bring all of these aspects together that made it necessary for Herrington and his planning and design teams to take as much time as they did before bringing the development to market.

Keys to the final design included:
Low density: “We voluntarily downzoned the project from 3,500 units to 1,500 in order to achieve a more gracious community environment that feels right for Kauai.”
A relaxed and flowing land plan that works with the natural contours of the site.
Landscaping: Farmscape landscaping concepts bring the rural farming environment of the island right into the heart of Kukui’ula as an amenity for residents.
Low-profile building forms “with nothing taller than a palm tree.”
Lifestyle: There was a strong commitment to the authentic plantation style of the island, including design guidelines that serve as a “pattern book” for home builders.
All planning decisions made considering the tradewinds, solar angles, and sunset views.
The community has LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certification, and uses irrigation achieved using non-potable water from adjacent mountains, and has an underground loop that captures heat from air conditioning systems to heat swimming pools.
There is also a village where residents can shop, dine, visit art galleries or get medical attention.

The beauty that is Hawaii is at the doorstep of each residence, but sustainability remains an important part of what Kukui’ula has to offer, says Herrington.

“We are offering a truly sustainable development to residents, in keeping with the overall philosophy of Kauai to use the land responsibly,” he says.


Kauai is the fourth-largest and northernmost island of the Hawaiian chain.

Its distant past is filled with legends. The best known tells of the Menehune, a mythical race of small people talented in construction and engineering who created Kauai’s aqueducts and fishponds, often in a single night.

They were believed to have lived in the woods and were shunned by other Hawaiians.

Today, you can still see their work at Hawaiian fishponds like Alekoko, known as Menehune Fishpond, near Lihue.

In 1778, British explorer Captain James Cook landed in Kauai’s Waimea Bay for the first time.

Cook’s discovery of what he called the “Sandwich Isles,” named after the Earl of Sandwich, introduced Hawaii to the world. A statue of Cook is located in Waimea Town.

During this era of western discovery, King Kamehameha I was attempting to unify the Hawaiian Islands under his rule.

Kauai and the small neighbouring island of Niihau were the only islands to deter his efforts.

But eventually, Kauai’s King Kaumualii decided to unite peacefully with Kamehameha and join the rest of the Kingdom of Hawaii.

In 1835, Old Koloa Town opened its first sugar mill. Follow the Koloa Heritage Trail in Old Koloa Town today to learn about Kauai’s plantation past.

On the North Shore, tour the Waioli Mission House, on the National Register of Historic Places, to get a glimpse of missionary life in the 19th century.

You can also visit the Kauai Museum for a fascinating exploration of exhibits, artifacts and murals portraying the history of Kauai, its people and its unique culture.


DEVELOPMENT: Kukui’ula, a 1,500-residence development on about 400 hectares of land.

DEVELOPER: Kukui’ula Development Co. (Hawaii), an affiliate of DMB Associates Inc. of Scottsdale, Ariz., and A & B Properties Inc. of Hawaii.

LOCATION: On the south shore of the Hawaiian island of Kauai with Poipu Beach to the east, the National Tropical Botanical Garden to the west, and the plantation town of Koloa to the north, which is about a half-hour from the airport in the capital city of Lihue.

PARTICULARS: There will be 1,500 residences, a central social hub called the Plantation House, swimming pools and a spa, a Tom Weiskopf-designed golf course, a community farm, and a retail and service village.

PRICES: Various cottage styles — “nothing taller than a palm tree” — range from 1,500 to 3,800 square feet and are priced from $2.2 million US; custom home sites start at $1 million.

INFORMATION: kukuiula.com, or call 1-800-742-0234.


Kukui’ula Development Co. (Hawaii) LLC, with Brent Herrington as president, is an affiliate of DMB Associates Inc. a Scottsdale, Ariz.-based diversified real estate development and investment firm.

Along with A&B Properties, a subsidiary of Alexander & Baldwin Inc. of Hawaii, the companies developed the community of Kukui’ula at Kauai real estate.

Herrington, who specializes in planning, design and development of large-scale planned communities, is also a senior vice-president with DMB.  Among other DMB developments are DC Ranch and Silverleaf in Scottsdale, Superstition Springs in Mesa, Ariz., and Rancho Mission Viejo and Ladera Ranch in Orange County, Calif.