Colony Beach

A narrow building only eight stories high, Colony Beach seems quaint in comparison to its towering neighbors. It sits on the edge of the reef, with white-sand beaches yawning in each direction from its flanks. Waves roll in beneath its rows of wraparound balconies—the perfect vantage point for whale watching in the winter months and viewing sunsets over the ocean all year.

Colony Beach is part of an exclusive collection of mid-20th-century oceanfront residences that comprise Honolulu’s “Gold Coast,” framed by parkland along the coastal tip of Diamond Head. While today they may seem somewhat casual and beach-worn—and indeed, that’s part of their charm, as beachfront condos—they have in fact housed countless celebrities, and their units still often sell for several million a piece.

The Gold Coast enclave is a world unto itself. It includes the members-only Elks Club and Outrigger Canoe Club, two boutique hotels, two fashionable beaches and three top-end restaurants—plus the 200-acre Kapiolani Park, with tennis courts, an aquarium, a zoo and a concert amphitheater. Central Waikiki is only a 10-minute walk along the beachfront.

The fee-simple Colony Beach units are priced in the millions for a reason. There are only eight units in the building—one per floor—and with only eight floors, this is one of the Gold Coast’s most private and hard-to-land properties. Built in 1960, it retains much of the charm of that era, yet many of the units have been upgraded for modern comfort, and the building has installed central A/C. All units are two-bedroom, two-bath; in the range of 1,500 to 1,700 square feet; feature direct oceanfront views; and include parking. Pets are welcome.

Key attractions near Colony Beach include:

+ Members-only Outrigger Canoe Club and Elks Club
+ Upscale oceanfront dining at Michel’s and Hau Tree Lanai
+ Kapiolani Park, with tennis courts, Honolulu Zoo and Waikiki Aquarium
+ Central Waikiki, only a 10-minute stroll along parkland beachfront
+ Waikiki Elementary School, one of Hawaii’s highest-ranking public schools

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