It was just a regular old “pinch me” day in Maui this morning. I had the chance to preview this meticulously cared for and updated vintage house in Wailuku.
Although I’ve lived on Maui for 17 years, I still am moved by the piercing freshness of early morning sunlight bouncing in and around the tropical foliage, and the startlingly comfortable temperature of the descending mountain air blowing through the curtains.
It all gets amped up when I’m wandering through a vintage Maui house on a tiny off-the-beaten-path historical street. The listing agent Mino McLean’s
daughter assistant is jumping on the couch and voicing the crucial life queries of a 3 year-old. I wonder if she is included in the $495,000 asking price? She is definitely adding to the cute factor.
Hawaiian Chic Defined
If you’ve ever wondered how to define Hawaiian Chic, you would do well to study what the Thayers have done here on 225 South Church Street. Both the Thayers were born and raised here in Hawai’i and have injected just the right amount of modernism into this 1939 structure.
Firstly you are blessed with an architectural scale that rocks – and let’s start with the ceiling height – 9 or 10 feet? I’m not sure, but those dead architects who built these houses were on to something. (Why is this brilliant sensibility of scale lost on so many architects and builders of today?) You also have great window placement and no garage attached to the house – light enters all sides, and air circulates easily.
The Thayers have laid bare the wooden detail, painted wooden walls, and minimized their furnishings so as to let the architecture of the space sit front and center. There’s nothing superfluous – no garish color save for a sky blue accent wall. Each window delivers its own blast of color – garden foliage surrounds the house creating a surprising amount of privacy for such a small lot.
Kitchens and Bathrooms Tweaked
Vintage kitchens have always worked for me – usually nicely open to allow for a big circular table in the middle of the kitchen for dinners and dominos. Vintage bathrooms? Well, they kind of suck. The Thayers have modernized the bathroom with glass tile and a porcelain sink that pay homage to vintage color and material, yet are functional and opulent.
What’s For Lunch?
Yeah, well, what you can’t see is that you can walk out your front door of this house (no vehicle required) and saunter over to Wailuku Town for lunch where you can mingle with the Wailuku Glitterati – attorneys, politicians, social justice stalwarts, and tattoo’d freaks. Or you could just stay home and whip up a sandwich in this airy open kitchen. (Grow your own tomatoes and basil in the back garden – fresh chèvre from Surfing Goat Dairy if you please.)
We Realtors Have Our Own Coconut Wireless
This property is listed by Island Sotheby’s International Realty and one of the perks of working with a full-time realtor (such as myself) is that when something like this comes up, we are often the first to hear about it. Thanks to Mino McLean for allowing me to preview this beautiful house.
Since I have taken a vow never to use the word “gem,” which I consider the most overused and meaningless real estate adjective, I won’t use it. This property however is rare, beautiful, and great value. Oh God, I even have to write another horrible real estate phrase: “It won’t last long!” – Usually when I read that I think “yeah right” – but in this case, it’s true.
I would be happy to represent you as a buyer of this fine house. Contact me for more info:
Liam S. Ball, R(B)
Photography by Dante Parducci