Nuuanu may personify Old-Hawaii elegance more than any other neighborhood in the Islands. Vintage bungalows and stately mansions nestle along leafy streets that wind above downtown Honolulu into the lush, waterfall-streaked Nuuanu Valley, traced with historic sites, exclusive enclaves and ancient remnants of taro farming. Settled, peaceful and graceful, Nuuanu is often a top-of-the-list request for Oahu home buyers.
Literally meaning “cool height” in Hawaiian, Nuuanu has long been treasured for its refreshing climate as well its as easy proximity to the city’s most prominent business and government districts. The neighborhood begins along Foster Garden, founded in 1853, and spreads upland past landmarks such as King Kamehameha III’s 19th-century summer home and the streamfront Sanju Pagoda to rows of grand consulates and the elite Oahu Country Club. The valley ends at the sculpted peaks of famed Nuuanu Pali Lookout.
Many homes on Nuuanu Avenue and in Upper Nuuanu are registered historic properties with gracious lawns and mature trees, and once belonged to Hawaii’s most prominent families. Nuuanu’s petite cottage properties often tuck away from the streets, hiding charming gardens and plantation-era touches. Several upscale high-rise condos in Lower Nuuanu offer spectacular views across downtown and of Honolulu’s harborfront.
Key attractions in and around Nuuanu include:
+ Downtown Honolulu, Chinatown and the harbor, walking distance from Lower Nuuanu
+ Historic landmarks, including the Queen Emma Summer Palace and Foster Garden
+ Several full-service hospitals and neighborhood-style shopping and dining nooks
+ The members-only Oahu Country Club, with an 18-hole golf course
+ Six elementary schools, including two “Blue Ribbon” schools