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Hotel Open House Saturday Afternoon, Construction Timelapse Video

Laie’s own Courtyard by Marriott will celebrate its grand opening with an Open House for the public this Saturday at 1 p.m. Attendees will be treated to a tour of the new hotel and refreshments will be served.
“Although we had our soft opening earlier this year, we’re excited to now celebrate the grand opening of Oahu’s newest hotel,” said Director of Sales, Milton Lafitaga. “We’ve combined style and comfort with innovative technology to appeal to today’s travelers looking for an authentic Hawaiian experience away from the hustle and bustle of Waikiki,” added Lafitaga.
To help celebrate the grand opening, we have put together a timelapse video of the hotel’s approximately 12-month construction, from April 2014 to April of this year. Click here to view the video.
Laie’s 144-room hotel offers visitors to Oahu’s legendary North Shore a new set of accommodations next to the beach and the world famous Polynesian Cultural Center. From couples to families, Courtyard Oahu North Shore offers something for everyone with its on-site amenities and convenient location to area attractions, golf, legendary beaches and surf spots, farms stands and more.
For more information about the open house, or reservations, call (808) 293-4900 or visit www.marriott.com.
We hope you’ll join us for the festivities this Saturday afternoon!

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Coming soon to Laie…

Some great improvements and new services are coming soon to Laie!

City Repaving Project, Kulanui Street Improvements

As announced last month, the City & County of Honolulu will soon be repaving all of Laie’s roadways as part of a larger project to repave streets open for public use along the Windward coast.

The City has begun preparation work for repaving Laie's streets (Naniloa Loop, July 2015)
The City has begun preparation work for repaving Laie’s streets (Naniloa Loop, July 2015)


Hawaii Reserves, Inc., recently announced that it will make some improvements to Kulanui Street in coming weeks, as part of that project.

“Kulanui Street is one of the major collector streets in Laie and is used by residents, students and visitors travelling in cars and on bikes,” said Eric Beaver, president of HRI.

He noted that the current width of the street is not ideal for heavy vehicular and bike use. Also, the perpendicular parking on Kulanui is unsafe because it limits sight distances along the street and at intersections, and it detracts from the streetscape.

“The planned upgrades will increase safety along the street and help beautify the area,” remarked Beaver. The plan is to:

•Increase the vehicle travel way to 24 feet
•Add 6 feet to each side of the street for bike lanes
•Change perpendicular parking to parallel parking along the street
•Install trees and irrigation along the street to beautify the streetscape

Schematic Layout of Kulanui Street Improvements
Schematic layout of Kulanui Street improvements


Conceptual Digital Graphic of Kulanui Street Improvements
Conceptual digital graphic of Kulanui Street improvements


The repaving project is expected to begin the last week in August.

Once preparation work begins, Kulanui residents have been asked to temporarily park on adjacent side streets as needed, and on their own properties where possible. HRI will also keep the Temple Gardens parking lot open 24/7 as an overflow parking lot during the construction period.

Questions about the project may be directed to Jeffrey Tyau, HRI Vice President of Operations, at 293-9201.

“We appreciate everyone’s patience as these improvements are installed and the City repaves Laie’s streets,” said Beaver.

Ken’s Fresh Fish

The extremely popular Ken’s Fresh Fish of Hauula will be coming soon to Laie, specializing in fresh seafood to go.

Land management company, Hawaii Reserves, Inc., recently announced the move via signage at the Laie Country Store building, in the space previously home to Country Rides & Grinds.

Kenny Broad and Melanie Hiram-Broad of Ken's Fresh Fish
Kenny Broad and Melanie Hiram-Broad of Ken’s Fresh Fish


Besides ahi katsu fish plates, poke bowls, and other popular seafood fare, “Ken’s” will continue to be a wholesale distributor to area markets.

In fact, the phenomenal, high volume plate lunch sales of “Ken’s” started from the humble beginnings of wholesale buyers simply wanting to sample the catch of the day.

“We went from fresh fish samples, to buyers asking for some rice on the side, to now selling about 400 plates a day when we’re open”, said Kenny Broad. “We’ve gotten so popular that it’s time to move to the next level with a full blown restaurant and distributor space.”

Broad and his team of employees, family and friends are currently renovating the new location and hope to be open towards the end of this year or early next year, pending construction permits.

“People love our seafood because it’s fresh – why eat fish from somewhere else when you can eat fish just caught, right here in our own bays locally?”, says Broad. “You can taste the difference.”

We are excited to see a successful, local business with deep family roots in the area come to Laie.


Castle Medical Center Clinic

Also coming soon to our community is Castle Medical Center Clinic, to be located in the former Bank Of Hawaii space at the Laie Shopping Center. Castle is currently renovating the space and hopes to be open to the public in January 2016.

The new clinic will be an extension of the Castle Medical Center in Kailua, providing secondary and tertiary medical care. Castle Medical will also provide various specialty services to minimize the burden of residents having to drive to its Kailua facility.


As the sign above notes, Dr. Marc Shlacter, “The Country Doctor” will relocate his practice to the clinic and be affiliated with Castle Medical.

As part of the move, Hawaii Reserves is in discussions with ACE Hardware about possibly expanding ACE into the shopping center space currently occupied by Dr. Shlacter’s practice. This would add a little over 1,400 square feet to the hardware store, allowing more products to be offered to the community.

We’ll continue to keep everyone updated as more details about these exciting projects become available.



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“Plantation Days” Historical Vignette

As we prepare for the celebration of the 150th anniversary of the LDS Church in Laie, we feature the third installment in a series of stories about the rich history of our beloved town.

We express our appreciation to the Mormon Pacific Historical Society which has graciously authored these vignettes to help us remember and honor our wonderful heritage.

“Plantation Days”

With the January 26, 1865 purchase of the 6000 acre, two ahupua’a of Laie completed, the reality and immensity of the task must have seemed daunting to Francis Hammond. In a letter to the Millennial Star (LDS Church magazine) in February, he wrote, “A person would require the wisdom of Solomon and the patience of Job to accomplish anything; but, as patience and perseverance will sometimes accomplish a great deal, we do not mean to get discouraged, but to persevere in well doing, believing that all will work out right in the end.”

To meet Brigham Young’s expectations, and eventually repay the church loan, Laie was expected to be not only a place of peace and safety, but a productive and profitable community as well. The question became, which cash crop was best suited to the land and provided the best chances of profit.

With the arrival of several couple missionaries carefully chosen and sent from Utah, Bro. Hammond grew more optimistic. In May he wrote, “If we are permitted to dwell here in peace, in a few years we can make a grand garden of this place . . .We have some 40 acres fenced, about 20 planted in corn and cotton — it looks well.” He went on to say, “I think sugar will be our main crop as the land is well adapted to the sugar culture.”

Original mule-powered sugar mill, circa 1870 (Courtesy of BYU-Hawaii Archives)
Original mule-powered sugar mill, circa 1870
(Courtesy of BYU-Hawaii Archives)


As it turned out, the corn and cotton did not do well, and full attention was given to the cultivation of sugarcane. Within five years, under the competent direction of the Elder George Nebeker, a small mule-powered sugar mill was erected, and 150 acres were in cultivation.

Unlike any other sugar plantation in the islands, people in the community worked for the plantation only when they wanted to, and for better than average wages. In addition to working for the plantation, local saints grew taro and watermelons successfully enough to sell to the markets in Honolulu.

The good times did not last for long, as a drought began to affect the islands. With sugarcane being one of the thirstiest plants in the world, increased efforts to improve irrigation and increase water flow were crucial to the continued success of the plantation. By the late 1870s, it was also clear that the original sugar mill needed to be replaced with a modern steam-powered mill of greater capacity.

Church leadership in Utah approved of the idea for a larger mill, and a loan was secured for its construction (mauka of the recently constructed Heber J. Grant Building on the BYU-Hawaii campus).

Modern steam-powered sugar mill, circa late 1880s (Courtesy BYUH Archives)
Modern steam-powered sugar mill, late 1880s
(Courtesy BYU-Hawaii Archives)


Other improvements included the drilling of several artesian wells and the construction of a pier in Laie Malo’o, near what is now called Pounder’s Beach (pilings still visible today). With the pier in place, it was both easier and safer to bring in supplies and ship out the molasses and sugar. Stability also improved through the long-term calling of Samuel E. Woolley as plantation manager and mission president (1895-1921).

The increase of acreage and production increased the need for labor, but people in Laie were beginning to find “better” options working for the government (in road construction, utilities, etc). This labor shortage led to a shift in the dynamics of the community. The Laie plantation contracted with the nearby Kahuku Sugar Mill to hire some of its laborers; soon Laie had Japanese, Portuguese, and Filipino labor camps in its midst.

In 1922, management of the plantation and property shifted from ecclesiastical leadership to the newly formed, Zions Securities Corporation (predecessor to current land management company, Hawaii Reserves, Inc). By the late 1920′s, it was clear that the Laie mill was aging and that competition with larger plantations was becoming more and more difficult.

In 1931, the plantation management decided that it was in the best interest of the church to sell all sugar operations, equipment, and supplies to the Kahuku Sugar Mill, lease all its sugarcane lands, and pay off all its debts.

Kahuku Plantation Co. train hauling cane, circa 1915 (Courtesy BYU-Hawaii Archives)
Kahuku Plantation Co. train hauling cane, circa 1915
(Courtesy BYU-Hawaii Archives)

Eventually, the Kahuku mill harvested sugarcane from the North Shore all the way to Kahana Bay, and remained in operation until 1971.

 A few in our community still remember their childhood days when they would see the sugar train as it travelled along the tracks from Kahana to the mill, passing through what is now the BYU-Hawaii campus and along Naniloa Loop.

And some might even tell you they remember seeing Hamana Kalili’s now-famous “shaka” wave! Hamana worked as a guard on the train after losing several fingers in a work-related accident.

A few of our kupuna were there that fateful day 60 years ago when President David O. McKay stood in a small clearing among the cane and dedicated the surrounding lands for the building of a new college — the Church College of Hawaii.

Church College of Hawaii groundbreaking, February 12, 1955 (Courtesy BYU-Hawaii Archives)
Church College of Hawaii groundbreaking, February 12, 1955 (Courtesy BYU-Hawaii Archives)


Interested readers may learn more from Gathering to Laie (by Riley Moffat, Fred Woods, & Jeffrey Walker) and The Making of the Ahupua’a of Laie into a Gathering Place and a Plantation (by Cynthia Woolley Compton).

- The Mormon Pacific Historical Society


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City & County Repaving Laie Streets

You may have wondered recently: what’s up with the white spray painted numbers and tiny pink ribbons covering the streets in Laie?

 Spray painted numbers and tiny ribbons have recently covered Laie's streets and sidewalks

Spray painted numbers and ribbons have recently covered Laie’s streets and sidewalks

“The markers are part of preparation work by the City & County of Honolulu Department of Transportation Services to ready Laie’s roadways for repaving,” said Jeff Tyau, Vice President of Operations at land management company, Hawaii Reserves, Inc.

Tyau noted that the repaving in our community is part of a larger City project to repave roads open for public use along the entire coast, from Pupukea to Punaluu.

“The repaving in Laie was also in response to the petitions that HRI and the Laie Community Association helped circulate a few months ago among local residents,” remarked Tyau.

The exact start date of the repaving has not yet been announced by the City, but the project is expected to start sometime in the latter half of August and should take about a month to complete. During that time there will be some localized inconvenience as City crews resurface the streets.

Pane Meatoga, president of the Laie Community Association, said, “It’s great to see some of our tax dollars coming back to benefit our residents on this side of the island, and we’re grateful to everyone at the City.”

Meatoga added, “All of the pieces had to come together – the hard work of the City’s Transportation Services staff implementing the program, Mayor Caldwell’s promise to repave 1500 miles of our roadways in his first term, and City Council Chair Martin’s funding of these critical maintenance projects.”

We’ll keep everyone updated as more details about this project are announced by the City.


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Project Updates: Laie McDonald’s & Gas Station

Laie McDonald’s
In recent weeks residents have noticed construction work on the new McDonald’s restaurant progressing. The one-story restaurant’s double pitch roof was recently installed, and exterior rock work finishing has begun.

 Masons apply decorative stonework to an exterior column

Masons apply decorative stonework to an exterior column


 Closer look at decorative stonework

Closer look at decorative stonework



The “drive-thru” order area taking shape

Ferron Fonoimoana, a Plaster Mason, recently worked on the new restaurant. “The Laie McDonald’s is different from the many other McDonald’s restaurants I’ve worked on. The finish materials, artwork and colors are not typical; I was impressed.”

The Hau’ula resident has worked in the construction industry for over 40 years, helping build everything from commercial buildings and high rises to custom homes.

In coming weeks, Fonoimoana and his crew will return to the project to install synthetic artwork on the building’s exterior.

 Conceptual rendering of new Laie McDonald's

Conceptual rendering of new Laie McDonald’s 


 Front view of the new McDonald's (note the unique double pitch roof)

Front view of the McDonald’s under construction

(Note the double pitch roof and earth-tone color scheme)

Fonoimoana remarked, “The look of the Laie McDonald’s will blend with the new hotel and the PCC, and be something our community can be proud of.”

Construction is on schedule with the opening of the new Laie McDonald’s currently targeted for September.

Laie Foodland & Aloha Gas Station

Work on the co-branded Foodland Supermarkets and Aloha Petroleum gas station at the Laie Shopping Center began last month and is moving along nicely.

 Construction site of the new Foodland/Aloha gas station

Construction site of the new Laie gas station


 Workers prepare the convenience store

Workers prepare the convenience store “form” prior to pouring concrete

 As previously announced, the new gas station will have four fuel dispensers with eight fueling spots — including regular, plus, super, ethanol free and diesel fuel — and an 850 square-foot kiosk housing a convenience store.

 Aloha / Foodland gas station layout (fuel station canopy and convenience store in brown)

Aloha / Foodland gas station layout

(fuel station canopy and convenience store in brown)


 Concrete boom truck and pump

Concrete boom truck and pump


 Concrete being poured via pump

Concrete being poured via pump



Mason doing some concrete finish work

Mason doing some concrete finish work

Construction is expected to take a few months with the station scheduled to open sometime in the Fall.

We will continue to keep everyone informed about these projects and others as they continue to move forward. Please check out our Newsletter Archives for more info.



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