Pacific Party Rentals

In an effort to continue to provide the best possible product, service and value to our clients, Sunset Ranch is pleased to announce that we have entered into an exclusive agreement with Pacific Party Rentals ("PPR").  PPR will provide all tents and materials to our clients for all of their event needs.  Tents and materials include:  tents, tables, chairs, linens, china, silverware, glassware, lighting, flooring and any and all other materials needs.  If Pacific Party Rentals doesn't have it, they'll find it.  Why work exclusively with one tent and materials vendor?  Two specific reasons:
(i) Superior Product and Service

Pacific Party Rentals has the newest and best quality tents and materials on Oahu.  Additionally, and more importantly, they provide the best possible service to our clients.  The PPR team is well trained, timely and extremely professional.  They are also intimately familiar with Sunset Ranch, and provide the optimal set up for each and every one of our six event venues.
What about pricing?  Pacific Party Rentals' product offering is priced competitively.  In order to provide our clients with assurance of this, we welcome them to shop around and collect bids from other vendors.  If the pricing for a comparable product is better at another tent and materials vendor, we ask PPR to do what they can to beat it, or match it.
(ii) Property Maintenance

As most everyone would agree, our most valuable asset at Sunset Ranch is the aina itself.  We understand clearly that it is our aloha for the aina that will sustain us.  Proper care and maintenance of Sunset Ranch is truly our highest priority.  Given the number of events we now host, it is critical that we manage the site efficiently and with the utmost care.  Managing events with a single vendor that we have come to know well, and trust, enables us to accomplish our objective of maintaining the beauty of Sunset Ranch for all of our clients.

We are excited about working with Pacific Party Rentals for many years to come!

Although our specialty is party tents, Pacific Party Rentals has everything you need. We are your one-stop-shop for your entire wedding, party, and corporate event needs. We pride ourselves in our work and our products! Our entire inventory is brand new, well maintained, and boasts the latest in high-end party tents and products in Hawaii. No matter the size of the event, we carry a large inventory of rental supplies to cover it all. From the initial phone call to the conclusion of your event, you can expect our courteous team of professionals to go above and beyond, consistently providing you with the highest quality of service. We even offer free site inspections and a free CAD layout to help you visualize your future event.

For more information on Pacific Party Rentals and our exclusive agreement, please contact Sunset Ranch at (808)638-8333 or  You can also contact PPR at (808)255-9043 or Mahalo nui loa!

Land Conservation Brochures

Please check out our new land conservation tri-fold brochures.  These will be distributed at every event hosted at Sunset Ranch, in the spirit of helping advance land conservation and sustainability in Hawaii.  We would love any feedback or input you may have before these go to print.  Mahalo! (808)638-8333

HEART at Sunset Ranch

In an effort to continue to build meaningful Horsemanship programs at Sunset Ranch, we're pleased to announce our partnership with Hawai’i Equine Assisted Reflection & Therapy LLC (HEART). HEART provides therapy programs for youth, adults, families, and other individuals and groups that incorporate horses for growth, learning and healing.  While the HEART program offering includes unforgettable interactive experiences with horses; the 'heart' of their offering involves experiences in psychotherapy and learning that culminate in lasting and meaningful change for each and every participant.

"HEART envisions helping people live happier and healthier lives by providing an alternative, effective, and innovative approach to healing"  -  Carina Cooper

The HEART treatment philosophy resonates with the EAGALA model. HEART believes that their clients hold the best solutions for themselves. In the EAGALA model of Equine Assisted Psychotherapy (EAP) and Equine Assisted Learning (EAL), each therapeutic session is facilitated by an Equine Specialist and a Mental Health Specialist. Working with the horses as a team, HEART provides the opportunities to interact with horses, and then process these interactions with the client focusing on real solutions that are applicable to each individual.

Please review our Sunset Ranch calendar for upcoming HEART demonstrations and programs.  Sunset Ranch is hosting an OPEN HOUSE for HEART on Saturday, May 5, 2012.  More details on this event can be found in the flier below.  Come out and join us, and learn what HEART is all about!  We are so pleased to be working with a company focused on doing so much good for the community of Hawaii.  Please contact us with any questions, or for more information at (808)638-8333 or  You can also contact Carina Cooper of HEART directly at (808)561-4184, or at  Mahalo nui loa!

Island Transporter

In an effort to continue to provide the best possible value to our clients, Sunset Ranch is pleased to announce that we have added Island Transporter as a Preferred Vendor to assist clients with all transportation needs.  Island Transporter has agreed to provide all Sunset Ranch clients preferred rates on transportation.  Whether clients book an event at Sunset Ranch, are involved with our Horsemanship programs, or are simply interested in visiting our site to learn more about land conservation or our planned Environmental Learning Center, they will have access to discounted transportation rates from Island Transporter.
(i) Sunset Ranch:  Turtle Bay Resort Transport
If our clients book rooms at the Turtle Bay Resort, we can arrange transport to and from the hotel through Island Transporter.  Typically, Island Transporter can do two round trips between Sunset Ranch and Turtle Bay in an hour.  Mercedes vans are used, and can accommodate between fifteen to twenty passengers each, and are perfect for the drive to and from Pupukea.
(ii) Sunset Ranch:  Airport, Waikiki and Honolulu Transport
For clients that require transport from the airport, Waikiki or Honolulu, Island Transporter can arrange all transportation needs.  If Island Transporter cannot accommodate needs with their own fleet of vehicles, arrangements can be made through other affiliate relationships to assure that all clients are well taken care of.

Island Transporter is more than just a transportation company.  Whether you're in Hawaii for the first time, on your honeymoon or a student in your final year of college, Island Transporter is committed to providing you with a warm spirit of aloha while you're in our corner of paradise.  The Island Transporter fleet consists of vehicles designed for comfort.  Our team of "transporters" are selected for their driving  skills, their familiarity with our island culture and their orientation to  customer care.  When you travel with us  you'll get first class service to any destination on the island.  For more information, please feel free to contact us at (808)638-8333 or  Mahalo nui loa!

Pu'u O Mahuka (Hill of Escape)

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How familiar are you with culturally significant lands in Hawaii?  At Sunset Ranch, part of our mission of "helping advance land conservation and self-sustainability" involves improving our understanding of the aina (land).  The process of establishing a conservation easement on Sunset Ranch, which permanently protected the site, taught us not only about the surrounding area's historical significance, but the importance of protecting it.  Thanks to the North Shore Community Land Trust (NSCLT), we continue to learn more and more about the history of the aina that surrounds us.  Specifically, the NSCLT's "Greenprint" initiative helps identify the characteristics of North Shore lands, and prioritize protection efforts.  An area of particular interest to Sunset Ranch?  The land surrounding Pu'u O Mahuka (Hill of Escape): Oahu's largest heiau (important religous site or temple).

Pu'u O Mahuka sits atop the bluff just north of Waimea Bay, makai (towards the ocean, or west) of Sunset Ranch (photo circa 1930).  The heiau is undoubtedly one of the more culturally significant sites on Oahu's North Shore.  It played a critical role in the social, political and religious dynamic of the Hawaiian community living in Waimea Valley.  Thanks to information obtained from Hawaii State Parks, here are some additional details on Pu'u O Mahuka:

1.  The heiau was likely constructed by the Hawaiians in the 1600's, and covers approximately two acres.  The picture on the right clearly shows Pu'u O Mahuka's strategic location relative to Waimea Valley.  The picture (circa 1930) is a view of the heiau (left) looking mauka (towards the mountains, or east) towards Waimea Valley;

2.  We know that Waimea Valley was home to a large Hawaiian community during the 'pre-contact period', or before Captain Cook's arrival to the islands.  Given the heiau's location on the bluff, historians believe that Pu'u O Mahuka was often used by Hawaiians living in Waimea Valley to communicate with Hawaiians at a heiau in Wailua on Kauai.  Communication would have been via extremely large signal fires.  The picture below, taken in the 1970s, provides a great view overlooking the heiau facing makai.  Try to imagine what it may have looked like when the Hawaiians were using signal fires and communicating with residents of Kauai.

3.  Pu'u O Mahuka had three distinct wall enclosures ranging from three to six feet in height.  The heiau was most likely built by commoners, with construction overseen by an ali'i nui (high ranking chief) and his priests (kahuna).  Within the walls of the heiau existed wood and thatched structures, and the ground was paved with stone;

4.  New ruling chiefs very well may have modified the heiau.  In fact, it is believed that the mauka portion of Pu'u O Mahuka was likely built first, and was primarily used as the ceremonial section of the heaiu.  The makai enclosures are presumed to have been added later, perhaps in the 1700s.  These areas were likely used as the sacrificial areas of the heiau; and

5.  In the 1770s, a high ranking priest named Ka'opulupulu (under Oahu Chief Kahalana) oversaw Pu'u O Mahuka.  This was a time of war in Hawaii, and it is presumed that the heiau was often used as a sacrificial site.  After Kamehameha I conquered Oahu in 1795, his high priest Hewahewa conducted religious ceremonies at Pu'u O Mahuka.  It is believed that ceremonial use of the heiau continued until 1819.  Study of Cook's Voyages suggest that after Captain Cook was killed at Kealakekua Bay in 1779, the HMS Resolution landed in Waimea Bay to stock up on water.  Imagine what the view may have been like from Pu'u O Mahuka.

So the historical significance of Pu'u O Mahuka is very clear.  That said, what is the current state of the heiau and the lands surrounding it?  We have some great news to share.  While the State of Hawaii (State Parks) owns Pu'u O Mahuka and a very small buffer around it; there is only one private land owner of the more than 200 acres that surround the heiau.  Subsequent closing of the conservation easement at Sunset Ranch, we were contacted by the land owner to discuss the possibilities of protecting this 200+ acre site.  The entire parcel is currently undeveloped, prime agricultural lands that wraps around Pu'u O Mahuka and works its way mauka up into the community of Pupukea.

We're currently talking to the land owner about two primary objectives:  (i) increasing the size of the State owned buffer around Pu'u O Mahuka; and (ii) protecting the remaining 200 acres of agricultural lands with a conservaion easement.  In partnership with the local community, the North Shore Community Land Trust and the Hawaiian Islands Land Trust (HILT), we hope that this vision will soon become a reality.  The land is simply too important to not protect, and the current zoning provides the potential for at least a 77 lot subidivision.  With current ownership in the hands of a conservation minded land owner, now may possibly be the best time to assure this special site's perpetual protection.

Hopefully this blog has provided a better understanding of Pu'u O Mahuka, and why we're so excited about the possibility of protecting the land surrounding it.  Land that is just a short distance from Sunset Ranch.  We hope that our small success story of protecting our approximate thirty acre site can help facilitate the protection of this important land.  While it will be no easy task; we're committed to helping all parties involved any way we can.

If you haven't already seen Pu'u O Mahuka, please take the time to explore it.  And while there, please think about what you've learned from this blog.  The site truly has some of the most spectacular views of Oahu's North Shore.  Also, if you have more information on Pu'u O Mahuka, or would like to discuss it further, please contact us at (808)638-8333.  Please also feel free to e-mail us at  We would love to hear from  you.  If you would like more information on the North Shore Community Land Trust's "Greenprinting" efforts, please click here, or contact Doug Cole at (808)497-0036.  Mahalo nui loa!

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