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The McKnight family has been hospitality entrepreneurs for over 100 years! Great Grandpa Anton Mus, immigrating from Italy, built the Mus Auto Court after his saloon burned to the ground in the Cle Elum, Washington fire of 1918. The Mus Auto Court and the Greyhound Station served travelers on their journeys from Seattle. When Anton’s daughter, Theresa, retired from teaching, she and her husband Thomas McKnight, a Ford dealer, remodeled and renamed it the Mus Motel. Today the Mus Motel, now the Aster Inn, has been revitalized and is managed by Theresa and Thomas’s daughter, Patrecia and husband retired Col. Courtney Starbird.
Theresa and Thomas McKnight’s, son Tom and spouse, Jami, built the Timber Lodge Inn in 1986 after selling their auto parts business. In the early 90’s, Timberlodge was the lodging for the cast of the television series Northern Exposure. Tired of the cold Eastern Washington winters, the McKnight family moved to Poipu, Kaua’i’s Sunny South Shore with their children, Tony, Aaron and Megan. Their plan was to build nine condos on their property for a quieter life style.
In 1992 Kaua’i was hit by one of it’s worst hurricanes. Hurricane Iniki swept over Kaua’i leaving a trail of total destruction. With winds up to 225 miles/hour atop Kaua’i’s Koke’e, houses near the ocean were found either torn up in new locations or scattered bits in pieces.
Soon after the hurricane, Tom and Jami found themselves owners of the Kaua’i Inn, which did not even have a roof. The family spent ten years rebuilding the Kaua’i Inn with only a few hired carpenters throughout the process. The Kaua’i Inn was the first hotel on the Island and has a broad and exciting history. During this period, the McKnight family also bought two homes that were destroyed from Iniki on the south shore and rebuilt them as a family. These were known as our Sunny Poipu Vacation Rentals.
The McKnight “kids” are all grown up now in many ways. Tony, the oldest, now 40, is an incredibly talented contractor who spends a lot of his time managing The Kaua’i Inn with his wife Donya who keeps us all afloat. Aaron, age 36, has his masters in physiology from the University of Hawaii and works in the medical field. His wife Heather is an RN at Kapiolani Hospital. The youngest, Megan, 29, a 12 year cancer survivor as of January 2013, that’s me! I married Reid Armstrong and graduated from Western Washington University with a degree in Art, specializing in New Media Design. I do all of our marketing, advertising, and graphic/web design. I hope you are enjoying them. And for the parents, Tom and Jami, they are still going at it in the hospitality business on Kaua’i with plans to retire soon. We’ll see about that... it may take awhile. We are all still immensely involved in the family business at The Kaua’i Inn. Our family looks forward to having you as our guest and ensuring a wonderful Hawaiian experience for you on Kaua’i, keep in mind we have over 100 years of Aloha in hospitality!