KAILUA-KONA — Upon entering Statements, the eye beholds a treasure trove of swirling light fixtures hanging from the ceiling, crystal lamps, and plant-printed pillows.
A dresser from the 17th century is perched toward the back of the store, leaving customers contemplating not only the aesthetic of the items, but their stories.
Owner and operator of Statements, Kenneth Salandra travels to Thailand, the Philippines, and China collecting unique and intriguing items for his store at 73-5590 Kauhola St. in Kailua-Kona.
And does it ever show.
“We’re in the middle of the ocean here, you know?” he said. “We get influences from China, from Japan. And the cuisine is called fusion. I had that idea in my store here.”
Salandra is an experienced, high-end designer who has worked in the home design industry for 45 years. He relocated to Kona 25 years ago from bustling San Francisco in pursuit of palm trees and reduced traffic.
The connection between Statements and Hawaii life is clear.
“I try to bring in things that have some relevance to Hawaii,” he said.
Certainly, Statements’ coral fixtures, seahorse assembled from wood, and ceramic bowls shaped and colored into vibrant tropical leaves conjure links to the Hawaiian land and sea.
Salandra said that what makes Statements superior is not only the quality of the items, but the cutting-edge nature of their style, with the showroom displaying rare pieces from around the globe.
Along with providing worldly, historical, and one-of-a-kind wares, Statements also offers modern functional furniture, outdoor furniture, and the largest selection of fabric on-island, Salandra pointed out. The store has access to fine furniture and home decor lines as well as works with local artisans as much as possible.
“We do everything,” he said.
The unusual pieces catch eyes, too. When customers walk in and take in the inventory, the store owner said, their reactions are fun to behold.
“It’s like kids in a candy store, there’s so much beautiful stuff. I give them a lot of choices. Everywhere I look I see beauty.”