Lonely Planet review
In the heat and humidity of summer, Queen Emma (1836–85), the wife and royal consort of Kamehameha IV, used to slip away from her formal downtown Honolulu home to this cooler hillside retreat in Nuʻuanu Valley. Built in Greek Revival style, the exterior recalls an old Southern plantation home, with its columned porch and high ceilings. Inside are a repository of regal memorabilia and period furniture that looks much as it did in Emma’s day. Gracious docents from the Daughters of Hawaiʻi society show off the cathedral-shaped koa cabinet that displays a set of china given by England’s Queen Victoria, brightly colored feather cloaks and capes once worn by Hawaiian royalty, and more priceless antiques.
To get here, take bus 4 from Waikiki, the university area or downtown Honolulu, or bus 56, 57 or 57A from Ala Moana Center. Be sure to let the bus driver know where you’re going, so you don’t miss the stop. By car, look for the entrance on the northbound side of the Pali Hwy (Hwy 61), near the 2-mile marker.