Beneath the shadows of Hualālai, a faint aroma of pa‘akai floods through the doors of Huliheʻe Palace. The largesse and majestic home brings remembrance to that of Aliʻi Ruth Keʻelikōlani. Soft patterns dance upon the canvas that is the outer walls. As the day progresses and the sun descends beyond the breaking waves, the fine details in the railings and windows reflect the victorian influence.
Upon entrance the golden hue of koa wood stretches and fades to the eyes silent applause. Nestled within hala and palm, Huliheʻe reflects Hawaiiʻs royal past. Situated across Hawaiiʻs first stone church, and near the fresh water spring of Kīʻope, Huliheʻe was built in 1838 by Governor John Adams Kuakini. Upon his passing the Palace was inherited by Princess Ruth. The palace was a favorite retreat of Hawaiian royalty. Princess Ruth opened the Palace to many in her ohana. King Kamehameha IV, Queen Emma, and Prince Albert journeyed often from Oahu.
In 1883 following a trip around the world, King Kalākaua modernized Huliheʻe Palace to its familiar facade today. Plastered walls, an extension to the ocean lānai, and the addition of ornamental cornice and gold leaf picture molding in the rooms. The home was furnished with sentimentals from many nations, including a Japanese tea set and Grecian busts. King Kalākaua and Queen Kapi‘olani enjoyed many afternoons on the beautiful grounds. After the passing of King Kalākaua, Queen Kapi‘olani inherited the palace. Queen Kapi‘olani would often sit under a large lauhala mat while in the garden.
Today Huliheʻe Palace stands majestically, preserved along the oceanfront of Kailua Bay. This book illuminates the beauty of such a Hawaiian heirloom.