Thursday, September 24, 2009

Lunalilo Lighting Project in Hawaii Kai Changed by Resident Protest

For several months, Hawaii Kai residents have been scrutinizing the county lighting project on Lunalilo Home Road, questioning cost benefits and the need for the extra illumination. The resident involvement has paid dividends, as Mayor Hannemann announced this week that the city has modified plans to replace street lights, will address community concerns, thereby saving electricity and money.

Lights on Lunalilo Home Road will be replaced from Kalanianaole Highway to Wailua Street, using 100-watt high pressure sodium fixtures with flat lenses, rather than 150-watt fixtures as originally planned. This is expected to save $63 per light each year. Wiring will be installed under ground, as originally planned. This will improve visibility and safety in a mixed-use area that includes Kaiser High School, a fire station, churches, a library and the Koko Marina shopping center. Trees will also be trimmed in the area to optimize street lighting effectiveness.

The planned replacement of additional lights in the mainly residential portion of Lunalilo Home Road, from Wailua Street to Hawaii Kai Drive, has been deferred until such time as the City can no longer properly maintain the existing street lighting system there. The existing overhead wiring will be retained. Also deferred is the planned replacement of lights on Wailua Street, from Lunalilo Home Road to Keahole Street; on Keahole Street, from Wailua Street to Kalanianaole Highway; and on Hawaii Kai Drive, from Keahole Street to Kalanianaole Highway.

This is at least the 2nd time this year that Hawaii Kai residents felt strongly about our community, and worked together to effect a change in government policy. (The first was to oppose shark tours in Maunalua Bay.)

We value our lifestyle and the beauty found here, and have a very deep sense of place for Hawaii Kai. Contact me to find out what is so special about living in Hawaii Kai, and how to take advantage of our buyer's market.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Assaggio's (also in Hawaii Kai) opens in Kahala

Husband and wife team, Thomas and Siri Ky, first opened Assaggio in Kailua, and have since opened in Hawaii Kai, Ala Moana, Mililani and Kapolei. The newest addition, the Assaggio Bistro Kahala, will be owned and operated by long time employees.

To give back to the community in thanks for their support over the years, the grand opening event, Good Living, Good Giving, donated all proceeds to Aloha United Way from the sales Sept. 14 and 15.

The new location is on 4346 Waialae Avenue across from Kahala Mall next to 'Umeke Market. Like all Assaggio restaurants, it is beautifully designed with a mix of colors and has a contemporary flair.

Assaggio, which means "to taste," offers Italian cuisine with a friendly, neighborhood ambience. The company mission statement is, "What you eat, no one can take away from you. So Assaggio makes sure that what you take away from us is only the best." Their restaurant (my favorite) in Hawaii Kai certainly upholds this tradition. It is located at 7192 Kalanianaole Hwy, in the Koko Marina Center, phone 808-396-0756.

The story of Thomas Ky is a feel-good saga of an immigrant from Vietnam, who came to this country with little to his name in 1978 at the age of 13. The company web site tells how he got here from there: "Thomas moved to Hawaii in 1984 and worked day and night at local restaurants such as Hee Hing and Dynasty washing dishes and cleaning tables, often pushing himself to work harder so that he could support his family, as well as save enough for his own restaurant. In 1987, Thomas’ dream of opening his own restaurant became a reality when he and a few partners opened Salerno’s in McCully. An Italian restaurant with a steady flow of customers, Salerno’s did well for Thomas and his partners, but he sold his share in the business in 1989 and decided to open his own restaurant in the Kailua Business Center. He called the restaurant 'Assaggio' and today, Thomas owns five of the award-winning restaurants throughout Oahu."

Assaggio's is one of many fine restaurants in Hawaii Kai, part of the lifestyle we enjoy with fine eating just a few minutes away from any home, many with outdoor seating to enjoy our tropical weather. My Relocation Package gives information about these attractions, and more to do in our oasis on Oahu, Hawaii Kai. Contact me for real estate information about homes for sale in Hawaii Kai, and buying opportunities.

Barbara Abe, Realtor

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Carbon Footprint for Hawaii Kai Pets

Families everywhere are trying to do their bit for the environment but we often forget the environmental impact of our furry family members. Pets are wonderful companions but the waste that Fido and Fluffy generate affects the environment in a huge way. We want to keep our Hawaii Kai home beautiful for future generations.

Here are some tips that will reduce your pets' carbon paw print:
1. Rescue Me - There are thousands of pets in need of a good home. Adopting an animal from a shelter is the ultimate form of recycling.
2. Fix Me - We're faced with a huge pet overpopulation problem that results in daily euthanizations so ensure your pets are fixed.
3. Play With Me - Purchase earth friendly products such as toys made with chemical free plastics. If you have a cat, make them a toy by tying up an old sock full of catnip!
4. Pamper Me - In addition to using earth friendly cleaning products around your home for Fido’s sake, invest in some environmentally friendly, natural products for cleaning and grooming your pets.
5. Scoop My Poop - Scoop doo doo into biodegradable bags instead of plastic bags. Cat owners should use plant based litters as clay litter comes from strip mining which isn’t environmentally friendly.

Help take environmental action on behalf of your pet by greening up its Hawaii Kai lifestyle. Consumers spend billions of dollars each year on their four legged friends. With such a huge industry, a few eco-friendly choices here and there will end up making a big difference to our island home.

Barbara Abe, Realtor

Hawaii Kai Animal Sanctuary needs your help

In a subject near and dear to my heart, and many other residents of Hawaii Kai I've met during my real estate years, our pets need your help.

There's a fundraiser to be held this Saturday, Sept. 12, 8 AM - 2 PM, for the Hawaii Animal Sanctuary, 603 Hahaione.

Proceeds will buy supplies for the animals. Especially needed are a washer/dryer, cat and dog crunchies and canned pet food, dish detergent, bleach, dish sponges, trash bags and the services of a carpenter. Call 808-294-0205.

Visit the pet page on my web site for resources to care for your pet in Hawaii and to move your pet to our Islands.

Barbara Abe, Realtor

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Hawaii Kai Resident Ventures to Kaimuki for Himalayan Food

Recently we left the great choices in Hawaii Kai and drove the short distance to Kaimuki,, to try the Himalayan Kitchen:

(808) 735-1122
Kaimuki 1137 11th Ave
Honolulu, HI 96816

The restaurant is tucked away in the lot behind Kaimuk├»’s Big City Diner. The outside deck eating area leads to an elevated gazebo draped with a string of lights and colorful Tibetan prayer flags.

The staff was attentive and energetic, eager to please. We found the owner to be charming and helpful. Some people may have to wait, but when you have a bottle of wine (it's BYOB) to help pass the time it goes quite quickly. Also, we went early and there were not too many people. By the time we left, it filled up and that was on a Thursday.

As described by Honolulu Weekly, "The best time to eat here is arguably at dusk, as the fading orange-pink rays of the sun contrast with the wood interior, being further illuminated by muted ceiling lamps. One feels relaxed, ending the day along with the setting sun and a rich meal."

The menu presents Himalayan dishes, ranging from seafood to meat to biryani (rice-based) dishes. There are also offerings of more general Nepali cuisine, curries, vegetarian dishes, tandoori dishes, breads, as well as a trio of “Himalayan Favorites with a Touch of Aloha!” Entrees range from $9.95 to $16.95. Read more about the food and menu at Honolulu Weekly.

Sounds good doesn't it? This is just a sample of the great restaurants available within minutes of Hawaii Kai. Contact me for more information about our lifestyle, and to request a free Relocation Package.