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Dream Homes with History: The Mission and Renaissance Style

Hawaiian architecture represents a variety of cultural influences: everything from traditional-style homes molded after those built by the indigenous population, to sleek contemporary styles highlighting cutting-edge technological advancements. And if you’re looking to build a home influenced by Hawaiian history, the options are practically limitless. Today we’re highlighting Mission and Renaissance architectural styles, both of which offer plenty of inspiration for a new home that’s as unique as the islands themselves.

Hawaiian Renaissance Style

Beginning in the 1850’s, Hawaii’s King Kamehameha V sought to develop visual representations of Hawaiian culture, as well as showcase Hawaii’s rise in international prominence. He commissioned the famed Ali‘iōlani Hale palace, which drew on both local Hawaiiana tradition and elements of Roman-style palace building. The resulting style, sometimes referred to as “American Florentine,” remains a hallmark of the First Hawaiian Renaissance, featuring Roman-style columns, wide verandas, and cylindrical details throughout. For modern-day homebuilders, adopting the wide verandas and curved details of the Hawaiian Renaissance style can create a home with plenty of space for casual outdoor living while maintaining a regal and high-end appearance.

The Mission Style

Originally brought to the islands by Protestant missionaries in the early 19th century, this architecture style mirrors the church meetinghouses and rural farmhouses of colonial New England. Hawaiian builders eventually replaced the traditional building materials brought over by missionaries with ones those found on the island, swapping out traditional bricks for ones made from coral. Later arriving French missionaries introduced arched doorways and windows to the style, and the overall result is a unique blend of both Hawaiian and European cultures.

Known for its high-ceilings, steeply-arched roofs, and exterior symmetry, this style is perfect for homeowners hoping to achieve a classic and timeless looking home, with plenty of room for more modern customization on the interior—especially if you want an open-concept floor plan with plenty of communal living space.

Make your own place in Hawaiian architectural history by building a home perfectly designed to suit your needs. And by drawing on Hawaii’s rich architectural history, you’re sure to find plenty of inspiration: from the arched windows of the Mission style to the stately columns of the Hawaiian Renaissance, all you need is a good architect to help you incorporate a little piece of Hawaiian history into your design plans. Contact us today for help making your dream home a reality.