A Famed Japanese Composer's Effortless Honolulu Hideout Asks $2.95M

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By Melissa Dalton
Designed by award-winning architect Sid Snyder and owned by legendary Japanese musician Ryuichi Sakamoto, this modern refuge combines organic finishes with stellar views of the ocean.

Before indoor/outdoor living became a common catchphrase, architects Sid Snyder and Vladimir Ossipoff of the Honolulu–based firm Ossipoff Snyder Architects were designing dwellings in Hawaii that embodied the fluidity of the concept. 

Take this real estate gem in Honolulu, for example. Designed and built by Snyder in 1969 and currently owned by the electronic music pioneer Ryuichi Sakamoto, the home is sited on a hillside in the Waialae Iki neighborhood in order to take advantage of extensive views of the Oahu shoreline.  

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A back view of the house reveals its glass facade and perch on the hillside overlooking East Honolulu.

A back view of the house reveals its glass facade and perch on the hillside overlooking East Honolulu.

Large picture windows in every room connect occupants to Pacific Ocean vistas.

Large picture windows in every room connect occupants to Pacific Ocean vistas.

To further blur the boundaries between the interior and exterior, the upper level of the 2,996-square-foot home wraps a private courtyard. Floor-to-ceiling folding doors provide natural ventilation and easy circulation between indoors and outdoors, while a 197-square-foot covered lanai is a second, open-air living room. A natural finish palette, including exposed wood, bleached lumber, tile, and stucco-covered cinder block, complete the home's relaxed vibe.

Folding doors make it easy for breezes to blow through the house and cool it naturally.

Folding doors make it easy for breezes to blow through the house and cool it naturally.

The living room is a cozy spot nestled between the expansive picture window and open doors that lead to the courtyard.

The living room is a cozy spot nestled between the expansive picture window and open doors that lead to the courtyard.

Folding doors line the courtyard. Cinder block walls are coated in stucco made with sand from the community of Waimānalo, and mixed with concrete and water.

Folding doors line the courtyard. Cinder block walls are coated in stucco made with sand from the community of Waimānalo, and mixed with concrete and water.

The lanai just off the living room is accessible to the kitchen.

The lanai just off the living room is accessible to the kitchen.

A view of the lanai with the kitchen behind it.

A view of the lanai with the kitchen behind it.

In the kitchen, rough-cut wood was treated to give it a bleached look that contrasts with the dark ceiling.

In the kitchen, rough-cut wood was treated to give it a bleached look that contrasts with the dark ceiling.

The architect created multiple decorative wall cut-outs throughout the home to facilitate ventilation, composed of roof tiles laid in a wave pattern.

The architect created multiple decorative wall cut-outs throughout the home to facilitate ventilation, composed of roof tiles laid in a wave pattern.

Light and air transmits through the wall cut-out in the dining room.

Light and air transmits through the wall cut-out in the dining room.

Exposed wood ceilings and tile floor outfit the dining room.

Exposed wood ceilings and tile floor outfit the dining room.

The principal bedroom also enjoys views of the water.

The principal bedroom also enjoys views of the water.

The view from another bedroom.

The view from another bedroom.

A shower with floor-to-ceiling glazing fosters indoor/outdoor flow.

A shower with floor-to-ceiling glazing fosters indoor/outdoor flow.

Bleached wood lightens up a bathroom.

Bleached wood lightens up a bathroom.

A dressing room boasts clever, built-in storage.

A dressing room boasts clever, built-in storage.

A children's room features a built-in bunk.

A children's room features a built-in bunk.

A wall of glass offers views to a flex room.

A wall of glass offers views to a flex room.

1525 Ehupua Place in Honolulu is now being listed for $2,950,000 by Diane Ito of Coldwell Banker Pacific Properties. See the full listing here.

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