For Jeffrey T. Long, AIA, President and CEO of Longhouse Design + Build, Hawaii isn’t just a place. To him it’s a feeling, an expression, a lifestyle that has evolved over his many years practicing architecture in the islands. That belief forms the foundation for each of his firm’s custom homes, beginning with an authentic appreciation for the islands’ history and culture.
“Our principles of understanding the environment and respecting the roles of the ocean, the sun, and the trade winds are how we accentuate the beauty of the location with our design,” says Long. Underpinning this process is a collection of historical, archeological, and cultural experts who help guide the 20-person team.
Because Longhouse Design + Build is a full-service firm, Long and his team maintain an intimate level of quality control at every phase. A streamlined development process aids in not only timeliness and cost control, but also brings peace of mind for all involved. “Because everything is inhouse, we work in lockstep with our architects, (SMA/EA) planners, and general contracting divisions,” he says. “When we have the perfect combination of the ideal lot, location, and team, the result can be miraculous.”
Contemporary Hawaiian design greets visitors at the entry of a recently built 7,500- square-foot oceanfront home, alongside hints of midcentury modern and an intention of transparency. Open spaces give immediate ease and familiarity, while a floating glass bridge at the entry brings a sense of arrival, internal animation, and excitement.
In Long’s trademark sweeping two-story living room, walls of cut coral frame bronze finished storefront windows that put the ocean on full display, leading the eyes outward to relish the home’s breathtaking island location. The home’s lines are clean and uncomplicated, and such simplicity is strategic to their vision.
“There’s a dramatic discipline and simple elegance to the home,” says Long. “It’s about creating a structure that serves as a refined piece of art, while offering a home that provides comfort and ultimately the exhale of relaxation.”
EXCELLENCE IN DESIGN: HAWAII
1. Touches of Asian art and architecture fuse a shoji-style wall of glass with modern
influences as well as the owner’s treasured collection of antiques and inspirational
furnishings. Photo by Andrea Brizzi Photography.
2. Punctuated by a unifying glass rail bridge of vertical grain cedar panels, this grand two story
living room combines a contemporary kitchen with a mosaic wall of framed glass,
conceptualizing modern island living at its finest. Rendering by Timothy Hamilton, Jr., AIA,
Longhouse Design + Build.
3. The watercolor-like reflections of a Hawaiian sunrise embrace the sculptural geometry of
this majestic modern home, while outdoor lanais and cantilevered balconies welcome guests to bask in the morning sun and gentle trade winds. Photo by Andrea Brizzi Photography.