‘Ilima at Leihano, a senior living community in the heart of Kapolei, celebrated its grand opening with official remarks and a blessing ceremony on January 17. Offering independent living, assisted living and memory care options, it is poised to uniquely serve the local community and answer a need for senior living options in West Oahu.
Executives from ‘Ilima at Leihano and Kisco Senior Living welcomed guests that included early residents, project partners and invitees from neighboring businesses and organizations. The event was emceed by respected former KHON2 anchor Diane Ako, who also shared some of her own personal journey of having a mother with Alzheimer’s disease. Kahu Kelekona Bishaw presided over the blessing, with early residents helping to untie the maile.
Remarks and honors from Senator Mike Gabbard and Representative Sharon Har, as well as Gary Nakata, director of the Department of Community Service (on behalf of Mayor Kirk Caldwell’s office) and Kathy Davenport, director of Community Affairs (on behalf of Councilmember Kymberly Pine’s office) contributed the day. Senator Gabbard additionally shared a “Lucky You Live in Kapolei” shirt with the honors in a nod to the accessible and supportive neighborhood environment surrounding the community.
“It’s well accepted that in Hawaii we age longer than in other states, whether it’s our great weather, whether it’s our aloha spirit, whether its our wonderful poke, our fish…whatever the case may be, we live longer here in Hawaii,” added Representative Har. “And as a result, it becomes even more imperative that we have the services honoring and ensuring that our kupuna are taking care of for the rest of their lives.”
Executive Director of ‘Ilima at Leihano, Mark Tsuda, made a final toast before inviting everyone in to tour the open house while a halau of graceful kupuna dancers entertained along the lanai. Said Tsuda, “Our residents have worked very hard all their lives, they’ve supported their families and they deserve the quality of life that they have at this community.”