Murphy Beds Are Back and Better Than Ever Thanks to These Ward Village Studios

Ward Village high-rise pulling for space-saving beds with a spicy past.

What started out as a means of wooing a love interest became a staple for those living in small spaces. And now the Murphy bed, or wall bed, is showing up in a big way in Ward Village.


Back in 1900, William Murphy patented a bed that folded into the wall because, at the time, it was inappropriate to invite a woman into your bedroom. He had his eye on an opera singer and wanted to invite her over—however, he lived in a studio apartment. The invention allowed him to turn his studio apartment into a living room, thus appropriate. We don’t know what happened with the opera singer, but we do know that the Murphy bed was a success.


Murphy bed


Murphy bed


It fell out of favor for a while, but now it’s back. Murphy beds have long been space-efficient options, but they weren’t often incorporated into pleasingly designed residences. ‘A‘ali‘i at Ward Village is leading the comeback in Honolulu.


The Howard Hughes Corp. acknowledges that it can be challenging to design furniture that is both space-efficient and visually pleasing—enter Lauren Rottet of Rottet Studio. Rottet designed ‘A‘ali‘i’s chic and modern Murphy beds that reflect the way of living of the building as a whole. The smart furniture is included in all 30 market podium studios and is part of ‘A‘ali‘i’s first-to-market turn-key package option for the remaining studios in the tower.


Customized for ‘A‘ali‘i, the beds have upholstered springs for comfort and a floating shelf that brings a contemporary style to the residences. Rottet Studio is known for its interior design of Viking Cruise Ships. The ability of Rottet to blend efficiency—necessary in the small quarters of a cruise ship—and style made her just the right fit for ‘A‘ali‘i.