The Tahiti Story

Ian and Anna Cronshaw

1979…Tahiti, French Polynesia…the surf trip: My good friend and professional photographer, Dana Fisher, and I visited Tahiti for the first time. We were commissioned by Surfer Magazine and were searching for the perfect wave in the South Pacific. We started our yearlong trip in Tahiti following a tip from a sailor who had visited the region two years before. We explored Tahiti, the main island, then Raiatea, Tahaa, Bora Bora and finally Huahine. Huahine was as pretty as Bora Bora but without the tourists and had as perfect a wave as we had ever seen. We were in heaven.

 

1985...Huahine...our honeymoon: Anna and I were married in nearby Rarotonga, Cook Islands. We visited Huahine and stayed in the town of Fare a classic South Pacific village with tree lined streets, a beach, colorful lagoon and spectacular sunsets. We meet Boom Shui, a local Tahitian, who worked in immigration for the French Government. We talked about buying land together but neither of us had the money as even then Tahitian land was expensive.

1996...Santa Barbara, California...the plan. Boom came to Santa Barbara to have his shoulder operated on by American doctors after a moped accident in Papeete. Again we talked about buying land in Tahiti and Boom said he would start looking as soon as he returned. 4 months later he found a beautiful 1/2 acre near Fare on Huahine. Located on the beach, overlooking a spectacular lagoon with views of the Raiatea and Bora Bora in the distance... it was perfect. Together we bought it. It was a requirement that land was owned with a Tahitian partner (this has changed...no partner is now required).

 

We designed 2 houses and submitted the plans (all in French and metric of course) to the Huahine County Council.

 

It has taken forever to get approval as things move slowly in French Polynesia. We are hoping to start construction in late 2014. The houses will be Polynesian style with high pitched/open beam ceilings. They will be constructed in Santa Barbara, disassembled, put on a 20 foot container and shipped to Huahine. We hope to be operational by early 2007. We will keep you up to date on progress.

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