Timbers Kauai opens as first phase of Hokuala development

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Timbers Kauai -- Ocean Club and Residences at Hokuala celebrated its grand opening at the start of July.
Timbers Kauai -- Ocean Club and Residences at Hokuala celebrated its grand opening at the start of July.

Timbers Kauai -- Ocean Club and Residences at Hokuala, the $235 million project that serves as the first completed portion of the larger $1 billion Hokuala development on Kauai's southeastern shore, celebrated its grand opening at the start of July.

Timbers Kauai features two- and three-bedroom residences and four-bedroom townhomes. Vacation rentals are offered from the pool of residences and travel agents receive commissions for client bookings, with starting rates ranging from $1,500 to $6,500 per night depending on type of accommodation and season. The smallest residences check in at 1750 square feet and feature multiple lanais, while the townhomes boast up to 3,200 square feet and private plunge pools.

"We have a few different options based on your party makeup," said Gary Moore, managing director of Timbers Kauai. "There are some that are right on top of the water, and you can  see the Haupu Mountains and ocean. Then there are some that are maybe 150-200 feet off the water and we have lagoons surrounding them with some really nice landscaping, there's a waterfall on an island and lagoons looking over the Pacific."

There are two pools on property, including a two-tiered infinity edge pool by the ocean and a seperate, more family-oriented pool with grottos, waterfalls and other features.

"The demographic is mostly families, and we see some groups and some golf trips or couples, but on the whole the transient guest will typically be a family," Moore said. "Maybe they come out for a week, or maybe they do four nights here and four nights in Maui. They have an active profile, which is true of most people coming to Kauai. It's not the kind of island where you sit at the pool all day."

The property is home to The Farm at Hokuala, which grows a variety of organic items that are used in Timbers Kauai restaurants and also hosts food- and agriculture-related resort programming. Every morning the arrival lobby hosts a farmers market with products from their own farm and others around the island.

The signature restaurant, Hualani's, serves breakfast and dinner and features a menu loaded with ingredients grown on property as well from numerous local purveyors. The farm-to-table restaurant focuses on incorporating the "canoe crops," those plants brought by the first Polynesians to land on the archipelago, including turmeric and sweet potato. Every Wednesday, Hualani's offers a special farmers market prixe fixe tasting menu focused on the most seasonal and freshest ingredients.

"My favorite dish is the ahi," Moore said. "It's just lightly seared and the chef uses a light drizzle of uni sauce that pulls out the flavor of the ahi. I think that's the best one."

Timbers Kauai includes a host of amenities, including a full service spa, an outdoor fitness lanai, gym, tennis courts, water sports, activities planning, and the popular Ocean Course, designed by Jack Nicklaus, with several of the holes boasting sweeping vistas of the Pacific. A keiki (children's) club is offered, and Moore said the plan is to cycle through various activities seasonally, including surf camps and stargazing.

The property's slate of programming includes hikes to waterfalls, kayak tours, snorkeling and more.

"We have 17 miles of trails," Moore said. "When we acquired the property there were two 18-hole courses, but in today's market you only need one. So, we let the other course go and we took the cart paths, added some gravel and dirt and some interconnecting routes, and made a trail system. And the farm is being built there as well."

Timbers Kauai also recently received approval to install a 35-acre solar power farm on the northside of the property, and has welcomed six different local schools to pick dedicated plots on the farm to maintain and use for educational purposes.

With the opening of Timbers Kauai, the first phase of the larger Hokuala development is complete. The master plan for Hokuala includes the addition of a luxury hotel expected to open a few years down the road.

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