Elbert Gillin, a civil engineer with the Koloa Sugar Plantation, fell in love with the isolated Maha'ulepu Valley and its long stretches of untouched beaches while surveying the area. He acquired a 3/4- acre parcel on the ocean front and pioneered the area by trucking a surplus officer's quarters from World War II to the site. This original beach house was later expanded, and the Gillins lived in the charming home for over 50 years.
After Hurricane Iniki claimed the cottage in 1992, the family replaced it with a house reminiscent in design, but more reflective of modern living. The present house features a private water system, electricity, cellular telephone, TV/VCR, dishwasher, and other standard appliances. The open, casual design and private setting remain its most endearing qualities.