The Road to Hana winds along the coastline of Maui; it’s considered one of the last untouched places in Hawaii. There are no nightclubs, no long, straight roads, no hotels with faux waterfalls and swim-up bars. Instead it’s the real Hawaii: twisting, curvy roads, one-lane bridges, and natural waterfalls. It’s flourishing, wild and tropical. Though the road is only 52 miles long, it can take more than two-and-a-half hours to drive the entire thing.
If you were driving on the Road to Hana and happened upon a dirt road that curved out toward the coast, if you drove down it, past blooming jungles and abundant greenery, you might find a getaway. A place where, when morning sun slants through the blinds, you’d rise from bed to see Mount Haleakala to one side and a sparkling blue bay to the other. In that bay, if you’re lucky, you may see humpback whales playing in the surf. They migrate to Hawaii from Alaska each year to mate and calve. You can see them from the building that rests on a sheer cliff above that bay, where you can look over and watch the white foam bloom where it meets the sand and rocks.
The building is as much a marvel as the landscape, which includes a pool with curved edges that almost melts into the foliage, an outdoor Jacuzzi, large rooms with tasteful décor and windows that are always open to let in the afternoon breeze. One neighbor is a world-renowned entomologist, the other, a rock star with wild hair and discordant melodies. This place, this luxurious, luscious getaway in one of the most dazzling places on Earth, is one of six worldwide Zco locations and definitely the most beautiful.
When a Zco employee needs to get away, they head for our hidden gem in Maui off the Road to Hana. There, the employee is able to recharge their batteries, ambling through the house decorated with light, modern wood, mixing fruity drinks, and taking afternoon swims in cool water under the hot sun. At night, the forest cradles visitors as they slip into sleep to the sounds of birds, insects and wind moving through the trees.
While offering employees a peaceful refuge, the Maui hideaway also delivers a unique working opportunity. When it’s time to put some ideas down on paper or communicate with employees or clients located in worldwide locations, the visitor can amble to a high technology office area. The location is ideal for business on a global scale, as the unique time zone accommodates both Western and Eastern worlds. Time spent at the Maui office often results in unparalleled ingenuity in mobile app development, 3D animation and game development. Employees stationed on Maui’s coast have drawn up some of Zco’s most successful projects, such as PublicEye. The beauty and spirit of Zco’s Hawaii hideaway makes it a true epicenter of relaxation and innovative thinking.
The property includes about five acres of land, much of which is lush with gardens full of fruit. If bananas, mangoes, passion fruit, and guava aren’t enough for breakfast, the visitor may have to venture out and do some shopping. Whether it’s time to restock the kitchen or do some exploring, our employees can climb into the Nissan Leaf Zco garages at the house. It gets 100 miles to the charge.
Hawaii is committed to placing more charging stations throughout the islands – and there are already plenty of places for employees to get a charge before heading back to the property. Better Place and AeroVironment offer several charging stations around Hawaii; those stations are free for members until the end of 2012. You just drive up to the charging station and use your touchcard to start charging the vehicle. Better Place has over 150 charge points throughout Hawaii and has pledged to continue increasing its electric charging network. Speaking of charging stations, Zco employees have an electric vehicle charging station at headquarters in Nashua, New Hampshire, too.
To accommodate longer jaunts, a Tesla Model S should be in our garage shortly. It gets 300 miles per charge with an 80 kWh battery at 55mph and will give employees a more range for sightseeing without a recharge. It fits into Hawaiian contemporary culture, since they’re trying to cut use of fossil fuels in the state by 70 percent by 2030.
In fact, Hawaii is one of the most green-oriented states in the USA. It’s a perfect place for a Zco office location, since we believe in cutting down pollution by going electric. There are more than 1,000,000 cars in Hawaii; it’s an extremely high number when you consider that there are only about 1,300,000 residents. Dave Rolf, the executive director of the Hawaii Automobile Dealer’s Association, even petitioned Nissan to include Hawaii as a test market for the Leaf – the very car that Zco employees drive down the winding Road to Hana. When Rolf sent the request – and later, similar requests to other electric car manufacturers – he included a pound of Kona coffee with the letters. Years later, Hawaii started offering a state rebate for the purchase of an electric vehicle. Purchasers can receive up to 20 percent of the purchase price back in cash, up to $4,500. The rebate program ended in December 2012 with a 700% rise in registrations.
When the Nissan Leaf or the Tesla Model S drives into the cities, Zco’s employees can rest assured that they’re working with the state to foster a cleaner environment. In Hawaii, there are fewer concerns about parking when you drive an electric car. For every 100 parking spaces a business open to the general public has, there must be one reserved for an electric car under Hawaii state law. Hawaii is trying to cut its dependence on oil; in addition to the parking spaces, the state leads the nation in the number of public charging stations available. It has one charging station for every 5,500 residents. In other words, Zco employees on a Hawaiian getaway can drive far and wide without running out of charge.
It’s not just Zco employees who think Maui is a fantastic place to relax. Charles Lindbergh, who made the first solo flight across the Atlantic, often vacationed on Maui in a simple home by the coast. He was quoted as saying, “I love Maui so much. I would rather live one day in Maui than one month in New York.” When he was diagnosed with cancer in New York, he flew back to Maui to spend the remainder of his life surrounded by tropical forests and the glimmering ocean. President Ford called Lindbergh’s flight one of courage and daring; it’s no surprise that the rugged, unspoiled landscape of Maui appealed to a man who braved the skies in the first non-stop solo flight from New York, to Paris.
When considering a trip, keep in mind that the Road to Hana is merely one of the places that makes Maui amazing. Flying over the island, you might glance down and see it twist, snake-like, between jungle forests and the coast; those places are also wild and largely unexplored. You’d also see cities, towns and bays to explore when you’re not heading toward Hana.
Time spent off the beaten path in Maui is more than a retreat; it offers peace of mind. There’s always time to pull off and dive under the crisp, cold rush of a waterfall or walk into the jungle and marvel at the exotic plants. You might transverse the road on a guided tour or rent an electric car and make the trip yourself. It could make up the bulk of your activities on your trip, or it could be a single day’s fun between guided tours and fancy hotels. There is also a plethora of activities to enjoy in the more populated areas.
So consider visiting Maui; we’d love to know you’re relishing it as much as we do. As the Hawaiian proverb says, “O Hawaii no ka aina mai kai” or “After all, Hawaii is the best land.” If you make it to the Road to Hana and see a Tesla Model S or Nissan Leaf drive by, give us a wave and a smile. We’d be glad to see you enjoying the island.
Zco employees really do get the best of both worlds. We have a beautiful vacation getaway in Hawaii and, when the time comes to fly home, we return to Nashua. Money Magazine has twice called Nashua, New Hampshire the best place in the United States to live. It regularly appears at other spots on the list of best places to live, thanks to our low crime, chilly, white winters, perfect for snow sports, hot summers, sandy beaches and strong economy. Nashua, NH only is a short drive from Boston, the beach and the mountains.
We’re proud of the places we live and work. The most breathtakingly gorgeous, though, must be the getaway in Maui, a place that embodies the spirit of our company. It’s daring, bold and unlike any other on Earth.