Want to Live Close to Ala Moana? Sales Start Soon for Luxury Tower in Kaka‘ako

Vida at 888 Ala Moana aims to raise the bar in terms of luxury, efficiency in Kaka‘ako.

If the number eight is considered good luck in the Chinese culture, Vida, at 888 Ala Moana, is trying to hit the jackpot with its address.


General sales are expected to begin soon at the latest Kaka‘ako luxury tower. The 38-story Vida is planned on a 3.5-acre lot just ‘Ewa of Ward Avenue, on what is now a Cutter car dealership.


Vida will have eight units per floor, a mix of two- and three-bedroom units that range in size from about 1,400 to 2,000 square feet. Pricing is expected to start around $1 million. Three-fourths of the units will be priced under $2.5 million, according to a presentation last month to Realtors by Heyer & Associates, the brokerage handling sales for the project.


One of the unique things about this project compared with other new projects is that the building faces toward Diamond Head. It’s also at a point on Ala Moana Boulevard where it juts out toward the ocean, providing a better view plane of Diamond Head.  Condos with Diamond Head views fetch a premium, and ‘Ewa-facing units are known to be slightly warmer later in the day, as they get more direct afternoon sunlight. None of the units in Vida face west.


Another distinct feature is that the developer has eliminated hallways in the building by strategically placing six elevators to service the 263 units. Hallways are considered inefficient and costly because of the money to cool, light, decorate and maintain them. At Vida, an elevator will take you to a private foyer, straight to your unit. There are several other features, ranging from windows to AC units, that make the building as energy efficient as possible.


Vida is being developed by a partnership of Kobayashi Group and The MacNaughton Group. Their other projects are Hokua at 1288 Ala Moana, Capitol Place, ONE Ala Moana and Park Lane.


Hokua, completed in 2006, commands some of the highest condo prices in Hawai‘i. ONE, located next to Nordstrom at Ala Moana, sold out in about a day during its owner-occupant sale in 2012. The ultra-luxury Park Lane project is about 60 percent sold, despite eye-popping price tags. It’s being built on the makai-‘Ewa corner of Ala Moana Center.


“The goal here with Vida is you’ve got something that is clearly in the luxury category, I would say similar, if not better than Hokua, certainly better in terms of finishes,” said Vida sales agent Matthew Pakkala during the presentation last month. “Go check out ONE Ala Moana and imagine ONE Ala Moana bigger, badder, better and a little bit nicer.”


The units will feature top-shelf finishes and fixtures with high-end Sub-Zero and Wolf appliances. They will also have high ceilings. Units from the eighth to the 12th floors will have 9-foot ceilings like Hokua. Higher floor units will have 9 ½-foot ceilings.


The amenities will include guest suites and two pools—a family pool and a separate lap pool. There will be storage on site, a fitness/yoga room, a spa, a wine room, a theater, a bark park, a kids play area and a maintenance space for residents to use like a workshop. 


Monthly maintenance fees are expected to be about 93 cents per square foot.


Pakkala said the experience and feedback from the other projects helped the developer fine-tune plans for Vida. Many of the developers and consultants live in the previous Kobayashi-MacNaughton projects, so they understand what works or doesn’t, and what’s important to owners.


So you’re seeing “the evolution of what owners want, what they need, how they want to live.”


Vida is expected to be completed in late 2017 or early 2018.