Portrait by Leah Friel

Music. A universal language that holds no race, creed, color, gender, age or preference to whether you are married or single; it doesn’t care if you are gay or straight. Music can make you cry, make you laugh; it can make you tap your toes and kick your heels-it can even soothe your soul and lull you to sleep.

In Hawai’i we are blessed to live in a place where music is part of its culture and spirit, and with this-our seventh anniversary of HILuxury-we are privileged to hold conversations with such iconic musical geniuses as Mick Fleetwood, Michael McDonald, and of course, the legendary Willie Nelson.

I have many fond memories of growing up in San Francisco. The foghorn blaring at night, the smell of the brakes from the cable car grabbing the tracks, delicious dim sum in Chinatown, skipping school, walking across the bridge to go to Sausalito with my friends and catching a game at Candlestick with dad … it’s what you did when you grew up in the city.

Some of the city has changed, and some of it has not. Funny, as I grew older, all I could think about was moving away to Hawai’i, and now, thanks to frequent trips back and forth to San Francisco, everything has come full circle, as I now have the best of both worlds.

One of my most vivid childhood memories was the little bedroom closet. I shared it with my sister and it was crammed so tightly that it was impossible to get anything out, and the door never really shut. Thank heaven for people like Lisa Adams, owner of LA Closet Design-she shows us how to eliminate and organize closet space making use of every nook and cranny. It makes me wonder, what would she have done with my closet?

Another grand thing about San Francisco is the short drive to the wine country. Napa Valley, Sonoma, Russian River, St. Helena, Yountville- all in one place, producing lovely and delectable wines, yet each one is unique in its own right. In this current magazine (and in upcoming issues of HILuxury), our resident Master Sommelier, Roberto Viernes, educates us region by region, sharing his great knowledge of these remarkable localities.

We are grateful to all of our advertisers, without whom, we would not be able to put out such a fantastic magazine. To our loyal readers, keep the great comments coming, “like us” on Facebook and tweet our stories! Last but not least: A big, heartfelt thanks to my staff for all their hard work, and best of all-thank you for keeping me living to the beat of the music.

Live, love, laugh with aloha,

Linda Woo
Publisher