The Diamond Head region is located between Metro Honolulu
and Hawaii Kai
, the two districts that bookend it. The Diamond Head region has a relative scarcity of condos and combined with the already high appeal of the neighborhoods here, puts these units easily on the high-end of the market. In some cases, the very highest.
That last fact is a fitting introduction to the most expensive group of condos in Hawaii, the Gold Coast
. Sitting just over the line from Waikiki under the gaze of Diamond Head herself, their view of this world-famous landmark is only surpassed by their outlook that comes from being, in many cases, not just on the ocean, but practically over it.
Built before regulations permanently pushed construction further back from the coastline, the Gold Coast condos are a never-to-be-repeated treasure, the residents living with the sights and sounds of the surf below their lanais. Built in the 1950's and 60's, they lack almost all of the modern amenities that are standard today, yet they regularly command 7 figure prices. It's a confirmation that one real estate factor trumps all others – Location.
Kaimuki has become more crowded as the attraction of living within reach of the the job center of Waikiki and the shopping resources of Ala Moana, yet in a neighborhood that's still untouched by tourism or large development. The community has held onto their low-rise profile, though, so the condos here are primarily in walk-ups or the one real high-rise, the Kaimuki Jade.
Waialae & Kahala are so intermingled that they're often thought of as one. They sit just on the eastern side of Diamond Head from the Gold Coast, but there's an instant opening up of the landscape, as the majority of the properties remain under three stories, if that, combined with the greater space between them. The typical multi-story condominiums that are here are located almost exclusively, and immediately, on the mountain side of the highway.
Being the tallest buildings in the area they have sweeping views, some out to the ocean, though some units are level with the elevated roadway. All of these residences are directly across the street from Kahala Mall, making shopping for most things, including groceries, easy to do. The one other high-rise condo stands just on the ocean side of the mall, making its views of the waves even better.
Tucked back in the valley area, where the Waialae label can be applied more confidently, there are at least of couple of very nice, secluded condo communities. One, the Waialae Gardens
, is comprised of townhomes with a high-rise. Though set back from the main traffic areas, you can still walk to Kahala Mall
The other is a collection of unique townhomes raised up on stilts that are surrounded by trees and foliage, called the Kahala View Estates
. Both this property and the Gardens fit the Kahala lifestyle of quiet gentility that is a distinct part of the appeal of buying here.
The challenge of this district for those seeking condos in the Diamond Head district is not only the preference of residents for keeping the horizon open, but also the fact that the mountains are closer in, squeezing the land between them and the ocean. You'll be hard pressed to spot anything man-made over 30 feet tall in this region once past Kahala.
Building taller structures on the hills and ridges is impractical, so that leaves just the lower property for that kind of development and there just isn't a lot of it.
All of that, combined with the strong attraction of the scenery, the coastline and the serenity that characterizes the days spent in these communities, will keep these properties in high demand for some time to come.
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