Like living in a Hawaii Kai hotel

If you’re not familiar with Mt. Terrace in Hawaii Kai, don’t feel bad. It’s another one of those condos that has very low turnover, so you won’t see too many units on the market. The owner-occupancy, in fact, is about 71 percent.

A unit in Mt. Terrace just became available, and it’s sought after not just because it’s a corner unit, but because it’s on a high floor. Since the building is 38 years old, the owner of this listing recently hired a designer to help bring the unit up to date.

More than $130,000 in improvements were made to this unit, including gutting the kitchen and putting in new cabinets and granite counters. There are mahogany wood floors throughout and new, contemporary lighting. She even redesigned the bathroom basin area and built a custom medicine cabinet for $3,000.

“The layout is very open, so no matter where you are sitting, you are looking out at nature,” says realtor Eleanor Otake of East Oahu Realty. “It has sweeping views from Koko Head to Diamond Head, even all the way back to Kuliouou.”

Otake says the building's amenities make it like a hotel, and the maintenance fee includes a lot of things other buildings don’t, like a workout room with lockers; meeting room with library; large, heated pool; car wash area; walking path; central air conditioning and more. If you go on vacation, you can take your plants down to the condo nursery and they’ll tend to them while you’re gone.

The residents all speak highly of the building manager, Richard Boyd—as a condo dweller, I can vouch that a good manager makes a huge difference in how happy the place’s denizens are. Security is tight; they even have a doorman to help residents into the building and to announce their guests.

The 1,644-square-foot unit has two bedrooms and two bathrooms, and the price includes two covered parking stalls. (Click here for details.)

Money talk: $789,000 fee simple
Contact: Eleanor Otake, East Oahu Realty, 808-285-1107,