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Gateway to Lava Flows - Changing Vistas 'Music Cave of Refuge'

Bedrooms 2
Space 1,000 sq. ft.
Property type house
Minimum Stay 3 nights


About the property

Lush Vegetation - Lava - Timeless Music and Ocean Rhythms

The home has been described as 'A Vacation within A Vacation': And what a vacation! Home offers SECLUSION for special occasions.

Read the reviews for guest's suggestions, quotes and kind feelings:

"We all agreed that this was our favourite VRBO that we stayed at during our Big Island trip. We miss it already."

The home has been complimented as the most complete, unique and best value for your Hawaiian Vacation: Your gift to yourself of a nostalgic memorable Hawaiian Experience.

"Yes Dorothy there is a place like Home!"

A Special Retreat with a welcoming lava terrace to the ocean!!!

Basic cleaning fees, no extra people fees and never a fee for information and help! The daily and weekly rates and cleaning include all costs minus the taxman and the HomeAway booking agent fee - Please read the reviews we are here so you can have the Most Unique Fun and complete vacation/holiday!

Property Description.

2000 square foot home and 3 adjacent lots with almost unlimited ocean vistas. The coast and lava field is always changing so each visit offers unique new adventures. Home is on a lush vegetation covered lot with coconut palm, breadfruit, banana, pineapple, lemon, lilikoi, macadamia, beautiful flowers and orchids: All opening to a lava terraced ocean front vista. The three adjoining lots have lava from the winter 1990 lava flow plus old and new vegetation to include avocado. If you look just 10 feet south and east of the house you will see lava where the 1990 lava flow stopped.

Pila Ho'okani Pu'uhonua 'Music Cave of Refuge' is the house second story: The exclusive premium small party (4 to 5 person maximum) vacation rental consist of approximately 1000 square feet with 2 unique bedrooms (2 queen pillow top mattress beds), a daybed in the living room and 2 upscale modern baths. A gourmet kitchen is where you will enjoy preparing your meals as you drink in the ocean views: Listen to the ocean as you cook and the rhythms of the palm trees or the jukebox with approximately 600 albums/CDs of timeless music.

Entertainment!!! Besides a full sized American Made Classic Jukebox with 6 bubblers to entertain you, you can watch a 3D movie on the 132 inch living room theater or watch a movie on a 92 inch screen in the kitchen and each of the bedrooms. If you want the complete movie atmosphere you can have popcorn from a theater popcorn maker and a beverage from a classic coke cooler at the Diner Route '66' Table. Wednesday night offers the famous 'Night Market at Kalapana: The Wednesday Farmers Market is a short 0.6 to 0.8 mile walk (lava route or road route) from the house.

Almost everyday features sunshine and more sunshine; often while you're sleeping, a rejuvenation shower occurs. Considered by many the most perfect climate on the islands: Sneak a peek at the Galileo thermometer on the breakfast bar and you usually will find a temperature between 68 and 82 degrees Fahrenheit day time or night time.

'Special 'Guest Book' Feature:'

The 'Guest Book' allows quiet time reading of shared experiences at The Music Cave of Refuge - 'Pila Ho'okani Pu'uhonua '

The Bauk Family allowed me to share this message from the “Guest Book' with you:

I share this message that is excellently targeted to the experience this special property was designed to create in this magical environment.

Hi Bob,

We have just returned home from our wonderful trip to Hawaii, so I apologize for the delay in replying to you.

We had a wonderful time staying at your property, and we took some flyers and will absolutely recommend it to anyone visiting the big island.

I will write a review online soon, but you are more than welcome to use the review from your guest book in your property description…



***Below is a shared experience from the “Guest Book”: The 'Guest Book' is specially designed to share with you - we encourage you to share your experiences and thoughts in the “Guest Book”. ***

“Thank you so much for fitting us in for the night - we just wish we had discovered this place earlier and spent more time here. After more than ten years working in the travel industry and traveling all over the world, staying in many types of accommodations - this property has to be one of the coolest, funkiest, most fun places we have stayed. We absolutely LOVED IT!!

Congratulations Bob on creating a fabulous eclectic environment. My four year old son just asked if we could stay here forever.


Julia , Jos and Alec Bauk”

HINT! People do request the same dates! To help secure your desired dates: Your best option is the on-line 'Book It'

How The Rate Is Figured Below:

Rate is for Book-in time 3:00 PM or later and Check-out 11:00 AM (unless other arrangements approved).

Rate structure:

We do not add additional fees; therefore, there is only a very low basic cleaning charge and no extra fees to any rate quoted.

No Surprises!

It is very easy when we use no-add on fees for the future guest to use the 'Book It' function and get the total fee for the term of their stay.

Email us immediately after you 'Book It' and we can answer questions on the property and rate: If necessary; we can even cancel and refund all your funds committed to the rental immediately.

The book online helps people.

***Secure the dates you like immediately with***

'Book It'

TAT W79981693-01

More Details

Member since: 2013
Speaks: english
Response time:
Within 12 hours
Response rate:
Calendar last updated:
December 12, 2017

About Bob

Your Host 'Bob' has worked a decade overseas assisting people in nations ravaged by wars to rebuild their lives and nation. During the time overseas 'Bob' was called the 'movie man' not because he knew much about movies but because Bob would share a movie with everyone: Sharing a move led to sharing popcorn and sometimes teaching people of other nations how to make popcorn in a theater popcorn machine: Bob left many popcorn machines around the world and many friendly popcorn lovers. During those 10 years, Bob had little time to visit the wonderful home and retreat he wants to share with you. For Bob, relaxation was no longer than 21 days home at Pila Ho'okani Pu'uhonua - 'Music Cave of Refuge' and making Pila Ho'okani Pu'uhonua a special place of refuge to relax, reflect and share. Darlene our co-host would put back in order the projects Bob did not finish. Darlene lived during my long time overseas at my home in the downstairs living area: I am happy to say Darlene still lives in the downstairs unit of the home and can be your best guide to the islands or she can be invisible: Your Choice. Darlene managed a Hostel for more than 3 years that specialized in eco-tourism and hiking (a favorite stop for world travelers). Darlene has been an island resident for 26 years. Now that Darlene is retired it is wonderful to have her around as a friend and resource. I encourage you to consider the advantages of a home with such a great friend and resource: We hope you can relax as we do at Pila Ho'okani Pu'uhonua - with our Hawaii and World knowledge - We truly believe there is no finer place in Hawaii or the World.

Aloha and Mahalo from Darlene and Bob!

Bob purchased this house in 2004

Why Bob chose Pahoa

The area and home have some of the cleanest air in the World. Home location is approximately 1 mile from a weather point used as a baseline reference for World clean air data. There is sunshine almost every day usually when it rains during the day (not very common) the sun will always return. It is very common for late night and early morning showers allowing for a lush green environment during the very sunny days and it makes for very moderate temperatures never (almost never) temperatures exceeding the 80's. With the mild but steady winds, humidity is generally not an issue. The home offers Seclusion, Seclusion, Seclusion with beautiful surrounding areas. Just outside your doorstep are wonderful walking areas and scenic roads: When you return home the home environment and outstanding entertainment option offer almost a vacation in a vacation.

What makes this house unique

View the steam rising from the lava ocean entry and from the front lot view the lava flowing down the mountainside when surface lava is present. SECLUSION! CHANGING VISTA VIEWS! MORNING AND EVENING WALKS! Almost no one knows anyone lives here! Two isolated uncrowded beaches one a 5 minute walk and the other a 15 minute walk. Must be one of the best kept secrets and places on the globe.


Nearest Airport
26 Miles
Hilo International Airport
Nearest Barpub
10 Miles
Pahoa Town - 3 in town Bars many Restaurants
Nearest Golf
25.5 Miles
Hilo Municipal Golf Course
Nearest Motorway
0.1 Miles
Kalapana Kapoho Beach Rd. Hwy 137
Nearest Restaurant
0.5 Miles
Kalapana Village Cafe
Nearest Beach
0.2 Miles
Kaimu Secret Beach and Kalapana Black Sand Beach
Car: necessary

Secluded narrow dead end ocean side road access approximately 600 feet off Hwy 137 (Kalapana Kapoho Beach Road - Red Road local name) - Home and all Ocean Front adjoining vacant lots are the secluded property at the end of the road: Adjacent to Hawaii Coastal Access and just steps from Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park's Kalapana lava viewing area. When you exit the house and turn left (west on Hwy 137) you are 1/2 mile from Uncle Robert's Awa ('Kava') Bar and evening entertainment/concerts plus a weeky flea market: You can follow the groomed walking access to Kalapana Black Sand Beach. Point east on Hwy 137 and drive toward Kapoho: You will find Kehena Beach (non-officially sanctioned clothing optional beach) Kalani Oceanside Retreat (comprehensive environment, health and yoga retreat), SPACE (Seaview Performing Arts Center for Education), Pohoiki (Isaac Hale Beach Park) surf break, Ahalanui hot pond, and Kapoho tidal ponds. Head back west to the house then head north toward Pahoa on Hwy 130 (Pahoa Kalapana Rd.) and approximately 1.0 mile on your right is St. Damien's historic Star of the Sea Painted Church: Continue into Pahoa where there are many funky fine restaurants, the Akebono Theater and shopping. A nice stop if you want to take Hwy 132 (Kapoho Rd.) east from Pahoa is the Lava Tree State Park (great fissure in the earth and trees frozen in time by lava): Take the 1 mile circle hike/walk (bring mosquito repellent). Now if your adventurous; continue east to Kapoho and loop back to the house on Hwy 137. Summary of Area Activities: hiking (Lava Tree), snorkeling (Kapoho Tidal Pools), swimming (Ahalanui hot pond), surfing (Isaac Hale Beach Park), sunbathing (Kaimu Secret Beach and Kalapana Black Sand Beach - wonderful morning or evening walks from the house), and 3 weekly farmers' markets (2 Sunday and the local Uncle Robert's on a weekday evening- Wednesday). The Wednesday Farmers Market is a short 0.6 to 0.8 mile walk (lava route of road route) from the house.


Pahoa House Accommodation and Amenities

Property Type:
  • house
  • Guests provide their own meals
Floor Area:
  • 1000 sq. ft.
House Rules:
  • Max. occupancy: 5
  • children welcome ...
  • pets not allowed
  • non smoking only
Location Type:
  • Beach View ...
  • Mountain View ...
  • Ocean View ...
  • Oceanfront ...
  • Adventure
  • Away From It All
  • Budget
  • Family
  • Historic
  • Romantic
  • Sports & Activities
  • Tourist Attractions
  • Air Conditioning ...
  • Clothes Dryer
  • Internet ...
  • Linens Provided ...
  • Living Room
  • Parking
  • Telephone ...
  • Towels Provided ...
  • Washing Machine ...
  • Coffee Maker
  • Dishes & Utensils
  • Dishwasher
  • Kitchen ...
  • Microwave
  • Oven
  • Pantry Items ...
  • Refrigerator ...
  • Stove
  • Toaster
  • Dining ...
  • Dining Area
  • seating for 4 people
  • 2 Bathrooms
  • Bathroom 1 - toilet , combination tub/shower , Stone vanity top: Quality Kraftmaid Cabinet Nickel Fixtures
    Bathroom 2 - toilet , combination tub/shower , Stone vanity top, Quality Kraftmaid Cabinet, Nickel Fixtures
  • Glass shower enclosures: Combination Shower/Tub - Fiberglass Easy Clean, Large Mirrored Medicine Cabinets, designer lighting, Nickel Plated Fixtures with single handle temperature protected shower heads. High quality cabinets.
  • 2 Bedrooms, Sleeps 5
  • Bedroom 1 - 1 queen , Pillow Top Queen Mattress
    Bedroom 2 - 1 queen , Pillow Top Queen Mattress
  • Master 'Tiki' Peach Colored Bedroom: Bedroom has a Queen Pillow Top Mattress. High fiber count Egyption cotton sheets: Comfort Pillows. Master bath. Pineapple ceiling fan light combo. Tiki torch accents at bed corners (remote led flame type lights: Room Atmosphere is Special. 92 inch projection surround theater system (Netfix and Hulu Plus access). French doors with a fabulous Ocean View. Blue Colored Bedroom: Larger than the master bedroom. Again Egyption sheets, comfort pillows, pineapple ceiling fan and accent fan. 92' surround sound projection system (Netfix and Hulu Plus access). Yamaha Keyboard.
  • Books ...
  • DVD Player ...
  • Games ...
  • Music Library ...
  • Television ...
  • Video Games ...
  • Video Library
  • Bicycles ...
  • Lanai / Gazebo ...
  • Lawn / Garden ...
  • Outdoor Grill ...
  • Water Sports Gear ...
  • 5 bicycles
  • Long-term Renters Welcome
  • limited accessibility ...
  • churches
  • health/beauty spa
  • playground
  • restaurants
  • ruins
Leisure Activities:
  • beachcombing
  • bird watching
  • boating
  • eco tourism
  • scenic drives
  • shopping
  • sight seeing
  • walking
  • whale watching
  • wildlife viewing
Local Services & Businesses:
  • ATM/bank
  • groceries
  • laundromat
  • massage therapist
  • medical services
Sports & Adventure Activities:
  • cycling
  • fishing
  • hiking
  • kayaking
  • sailing
  • scuba diving or snorkeling
  • snorkeling
  • snorkeling/diving
  • surf fishing
  • surfing
  • swimming
  • wind-surfing


Wonderful! 4.9/5 -
(45 traveler reviews)

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Gateway to Lava Flows - Changing Vistas 'Music Cave of Refuge'
average rating of 4.911111 based on 45 reviews

Paradise Found

  • 5 of 5

We enjoyed every moment at this Musical Cave of Refuge. The home was spotless when we arrived, with fresh flowers on the table, and Darlene gave us a very warm welcome with open arms. Every amenity you can think of was provided, and the home is beautifully decorated, providing a nostalgic atmosphere in a tropical paradise. Darlene gave us very useful information, and tended to our every need with promptness and genuine care. Bikes were provided, complete with good lights and helmets, and we rode them to the lava flow, a very fun and awesome experience. This hale was an amazing place to return to after a day of adventure on the island, and after a relaxing supper you can listen to wonderful tunes on the Rock-Ola bubbler jukebox or watch movies or TV on one of the many screens, complete with theatre popcorn. We have stayed at several other properties before, but this place is "hands down" the best home we have ever rented.

  • Submitted: Mar 10, 2017
  • Stayed: February 2017
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
Owner's Response: When you can have a great Hawaiian adventure and return to a homey home you have experienced Paradise. We are so happy you enjoyed all the special touches like the Rock-Ola bubbler jukebox and enjoyed the unique experience of a bike ride to the lava flow. After all that bike exercise there is just something special about having a great meal in a well equipped kitchen in Hawaii and in a home that can feel like your home. Darlene enjoyed your stay very much and she is always excited if you every have the opportunity to stop for another visit. Mahalo from Darlene and Bob
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Ontario/ Canada

Great location! Very peaceful, relaxing, scenic and well equipped home!

  • 5 of 5

Our family of 3 had a very nice experience at Bob’s house! The booking process went smooth and Bob responded promptly. Darlene gave us a warm welcome when we arrived and gave us tips as to some of the tourist attractions around that area. Special touches such as providing us with fresh tropical fruits and nice cut flowers were appreciated. Thank you Darlene! The house was spacious, inviting, nicely decorated and had lots of windows for optimal view. The kitchen was well equipped with good quality appliances which made cooking much easier. My 25 year old son enjoyed the jukebox and all the music instruments in the spare room. It was nice to have the projection screen for entertainment at night as well. The theatre popcorn machine was also a hit!

The house was surrounded with tropical plants, fruits and coconut tress. The view from the lanai was spectacular! In front of the house, we enjoyed walking through the old lava fields and the nearby beach. As you walk through the lava fields toward the ocean, when you look back, the scenic view of the mountains and surrounding areas were unforgettable!

Overall, we loved the house as it was very relaxing and peaceful. We loved listening to the birds and the ocean waves from our lanai at night. My husband enjoyed reading all the books about Hawaii and Kalapana that were provided. We enjoyed going to Uncle Robert’s farmer’s market which was a 10 minutes walk from the house. If you are around Pahoa area, don’t miss Uncle Robert’s farmer’s market on Wednesday’s at night as there were a lot of vendors plus live entertainment. It was a very neat experience, and people were friendly. If you are not into nightlife and want a relaxing stay, look no further. I highly recommend this place and will definitely come back again!

  • Submitted: Dec 10, 2017
  • Stayed: November 2017
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
Owner's Response: A wonderful family. Our guest were from Canada not far removed from my northern Illinois birth place. It is nice to see how they enjoyed the same special family friendly features in the Music Cave of refuge that I grew up with and like sharing with our guest. Being a person that likes to cook I am happy they appreciated the extra detail we place on having a quality cooking experience and equipment. Yes you must have Theater Popcorn with a projector movie experience at night: It was a family tradition watching a movie with a big bowl of popcorn. Most of all enjoying the lanai; the tropical plants/aroma, birds, coqui and ocean breezes and sounds in the evening after a wonderful day in Hawaii is a special experience for your soul: Then in less than ten minutes, you can walk to a friendly Hawaiian gathering at Uncle Roberts. Just maybe; you can come home and play some of the wonderful Hawaiian music you hear at Uncle Roberts on the instruments in our music room. We are so happy the musical instruments were special for their son! We will keep the fruit in the basket and flowers on the table ready for your future visit. Mahalo From Darlene and Bob - Thank you for sharing
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Wonderful vacation cottage

  • 4 of 5

Great well kept home. We loved it. Darlene was very helpful and kind. Secluded and peaceful area with the sounds of the jungle nights. Wish the snorkeling was a little closer.

  • Submitted: Nov 21, 2017
  • Stayed: November 2017
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
Owner's Response: Very nice guest; thank you for the compliment on well kept home and the peaceful area. The area is peaceful because Hawaii "The Big Island" is less developed, more volcanically active and has more space than all the other Hawaiian Islands. All the other Hawaii Islands could fit in the land area of Hawaii "The Big Island". Because of this large land mass and active volcanoes there are more limited areas for snorkeling. One of the premier snorkeling areas is about 13 miles from the house so yes a car is needed; but almost always a car is needed to visit the many attractions on the Big Island. We have two wonderful beaches within walking distance, one only 5 minutes from the house. They are great secluded beaches but not recommended for snorkeling and swimming. Actually prior to the 1999 lava event the Kalapana Black Sand Beach was considered the most beautiful Beach in the World. Today the area is still magical and peaceful. Mahalo Darlene and Bob
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Mississauga, Ontario, Canada

Great Home Base

  • 4 of 5

We really enjoyed our stay. Robert and Darlene made the booking process very easy and were quick to reply and offered a lot of information.

Getting to the house for the first time was a bit tricky but Darlene came and met us when we were lost.

The house has everything you could want or need! We used the bikes, binoculars and flashlights to go see the lava - watched movies on one of the many screens at the end of a full day of site seeing, enjoyed walking out on the lava, and didn't get a chance to use half of what the house had to offer.

  • Submitted: Oct 16, 2017
  • Stayed: September 2017
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
Owner's Response: Yes the home is in a secuded area; we were so happy we could assist our guest finding the home. Once at the home, it was nice they had time to ride the bikes and tour the lava field. Also it was nice the could enjoy some of the entertainment options at the home. It is true there are many other features, like the well equiped kitchen, ice cream maker and popcorn maker, musical instruments, jukebox and more! We are sorry our guest time was to short to relax and enjoy more of the amenities but it was so nice to have our friends for the short stay and we were pleased they took in the lava flows "One of Natures Magnifcant Wonders"! Mahalo Darlene and Bob
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  • 5 of 5

Always clean and beautiful...

  • Submitted: Aug 7, 2017
  • Stayed: July 2017
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
Owner's Response: Always a refreshing welcome when we can share our side of the island with a neighbor from the other side of the island. We truly appreciate their return visits and kind compliments. We take extra care after each visit/s to make sure the home and area remain clean and beautiful. Thank you for appreciating our home and efforts. Nice to visit with you again! Mahalo Darlene and Bob
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1960's Hawaiian Surfer Movie (Awesome!)

  • 4 of 5

First of all it's in Hawaii, but this house will add another layer of enchantment. It's off the beaten path so you have some privacy. Second it has A/C which made the summer nights bearable. The house and environment around it is beautiful. I'ts less than a quarter mile from the ocean. You can see the ocean from the patio. Beyond that though, the house has everything you could possibly need and more for your stay. Fully stocked kitchen, towels, washer and dryer, popcorn machine, jukebox, WIFI, electronic darts and oh some really cool drop down screens with projectors to watch T.V.

I would be very silly if at this point I didn't mention Darlene. She is the caretaker and lives in the lower half of the house. Darlene made the trip amazing. She gave advice, directions, and enthusiasm. She was extremely helpful. She brought up her own laptop so I could clear memory off my phone and put it on a jump drive.

I really loved all the small touches the things you find on day 3 o 4 and they pleasantly surprise you. For example, the classic 50's and 60's memorabilia, the guitars in the second bedroom, the Mad Magazines, the Brazilian nut key, and the hide away bed.

This house is not to far from a live lava viewing site. The Lava viewing site was a 4 mile long bike ride and the house had bikes. This saved us from having to rent one.

The only reason I can't give it 5 stars is the master bedroom did not also have an A/C. We had to share the living room one and if we closed our doors for privacy it got pretty humid. This was really a minor issue though. I would highly recommend this house to anybody vacationing on the Big Island.

  • Submitted: Jul 17, 2017
  • Stayed: July 2017
  • Source: HomeAway
Owner's Response: I want to comment on the front bedroom not having ac. I have the ac but I can not find anyone to install the ac since the window is non-standard and needs modification. This is Hawaii getting parts and service is sometimes impossible. I will have to install it myself but with me being in Afghanistan it will have to wait. This is very frustrating for me since the home never had air and I added ac as an extra to all the extras mentioned in this review never increasing the charge on the rental when I added the extras. I do this rental to share the nice things in Hawaii and try to made people's stays special and over the top. I do not make money and only defray ownership costs. This is such a disappointment to loose a star when you do everything to going above and beyond. I am sorry the extras like the nostalgia touches, musical instruments, free bike usage that would cost $20 a day for each bike, unlimited coffee and popcorn, cameras, binoculars, 3d large format theaters and a jukebox all did not impart how hard I try to make this special for everyone and all for just over 100 per day. There is no better value in Hawaii. Plus the nights in this area of Hawaii are always in the 60s. I hoped extras and the great climate would defray me not being able to finish the ac work while I am in Afghanistan. The type work I do is to make people's lives better. I am sad about not achieving my goal because of difficult logistics. It makes me think trying to make perfect is sometimes nearly impossible: It was a disappointing day in Afghanistan too! Sometimes you feel like giving up on perfection. Mahalo Bob
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Rates & Availability

Taxes and fees are additional

Additional information about rental rates

Cleaning $80 + Tax
Tax Rate 13.41%

WELCOME! One day can be booked at $150/night only one month in advance or less. Please if you see we are not fully booked in the upcoming month please contact us for special rates. We so much want to share our home and give you an unforgettable stay in our Hawaii: We will work hard to find pricing that can meet your available time and short notice schedule. Bob

Owner's Cancellation Policy

100% refund if canceled at least 30 days before arrival date.

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