Story By: Phoebe Neel

The stories homeowners can tell of run-of-the-mill remodeling companies can be disheartening, as they encounter uninsured and unlicensed contractors, high price quotes and jobs that drag on or go unfinished. Jorge Espinosa, general manager of Oriental Cabinet and Granite LLC, is no stranger to how frustrating remodeling can be, when dealing with a less-than-responsive company — but as his favorite part of the job is “seeing the smiles on peoples’ faces,” he makes customer service his first priority. Or the second, that is, after a job well done.


Originally trained in New Jersey and New York, with more than a decade of experience doing custom cabinetry, Espinosa now tailors his remodeling expertise to the specific needs of Hawaii homeowners, contractors and condo associations. For more than 25 years, Oriental Cabinet and Granite has prioritized fast installation and fair pricing for customers, using smart business tactics — not cutting corners — to succeed.

Unlike other companies, Oriental Cabinet and Granite imports its cabinets directly by the container-load, allowing the company to sell the cabinets at wholesale prices. “A lot of people come in and want to buy custom or local, and then, when they get the price, they go loco loco loco,” Espinosa laughed.

He steers them towards the company’s stocked showroom in Kalihi, with affordably priced solid wood cabinets, bathroom vanities and granite and quartz countertops, ready for purchase or installation. “Everything is in stock, so the turnaround is quicker,” said Espinosa. “We come in, we demo, three or four days tops, and you have your kitchen running again.”

Espinosa finds that Oriental Cabinet and Granite’s remodeling quotes often drastically undercut those of other firms. “I come across these poor people getting quoted ridiculous prices,” he said.


The company’s factory-direct prices mean that other firms will often buy stock from the Oriental Cabinet showroom, and mark up the prices for the customer, in order to make a profit. “One family was quoted $19,000 to redo their kitchen, and I did it for $7,200. The whole kitchen: cabinets, granite, sink, all countertops. We did the same job,” Espinosa said.

Oriental Cabinet’s quality standards also set its customer service apart from the rest, as the company makes it a point to finish the whole job. “We put your microwave back, your stove, hook up all the plumbing — all the details that the other guys leave out,” said Espinosa.

What’s more, he’s heard horror stories of contractors doing work without a license or insurance, “which is not only illegal, but also means that they don’t have insurance to cover any accidents that may happen.” Oriental Cabinet and Granite prefers to work with nothing to hide, and instead, leaves only beautiful work to show off.

contact // 841-9425
address // 1320 Kalani St. Bay 106
web //


Photos: Anthony Consillio