Photo: Henry Houghton, courtesy of Sunnland Architects

Timeless, plantation-style elegance on the Big Island

This award-winning home, designed by Sunnland Architects, is full of gorgeous detail.

Along the Big Island’s Kona-Kohala coastline, a lava field formed more than 200 years ago separates a unique jagged property from the glistening waters of Maniniowali Beach at Kua Bay.

While many homes within the Kukio Golf and Beach Club are built upon rectangular lots, this particular property presented a unique challenge, with jaws from the lava field striking the property line. Beth and Stephen McParland saw the site as an ideal location to build their new home. They just needed a creative architect.

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Vaulted ceilings with white-painted crown molding and tongue-and-groove walls provide an open, airy setting to enjoy the view.

The McParlands were fond of homes designed by Warren Sunnland, an architect with decades of experience in Kona. They reached out to him at Sunnland Architects, a new firm Warren formed with his son, Tai Sunnland.

This would be Tai’s first project as lead architect, but with careful guidance from his business-partner father.

The McParlands wanted a traditional plantation-style home with architectural elements representative of homes designed by C.W. Dickey, a renowned architect known for a distinct style that takes advantage of Hawaii’s climate. “Dickey favored larger open spaces and fewer walls, to allow the trade winds to circulate, and roofs with projecting eaves in order to keep rain out without having to close the windows,” Stephen McParland explains. “The Sunnlands captured these elements perfectly.”