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Wide open

The views are vast and the options endless when visiting Kapalua

Wide open

The Plantation Course at Kapalua is bold and beautiful, making it a perfect fit for that area of Maui.
Courtesy Kapalua

The slope from the back tees at Kapalua’s Plantation Course is 144, meaning it should be avoided by all but the tour pros that play there each year.

The slopes on the course, however, are unavoidable, so sit back and enjoy the ride on fairways that dart, dive, rise and bend in all directions for a strategic round that’s tough to beat. Toss in long views, trade winds and lush conditions and you’ve got tropical golf as it’s meant to be played.

“There’s risk and reward everywhere,” Emmett Markulis, head pro at Kapalua’s Bay Course, said about the Plantation layout. “The fairways are wide, but hitting the proper side, either for roll out or approach to greens, is really important.”

If you watch the Tournament of Champions from this Maui paradise in Lahaina each January, you know what Markulis means, as PGA Tour stars launch draws or fades that catch fairway slopes and tumble down wide corridors. Move up to the proper tees and you can experience the same benefits that concludes with one of the more famous holes in golf – the sprawling par-5 18th that the pros play from a mind-boggling 663 yards.

“This is a special place,” Markulis said about Kapalua and the northwest side of Maui. “It’s a paradise for golfers, just as this side of the island is a one-of-a-kind spot, especially for the outdoor enthusiast.”

Staying nearby to enjoy activities that include hiking, ziplining, snorkeling, surfing, tennis, helicopter tours, beach outings and golf at the Plantation or Bay layouts is handy at one of the lodging options at Kapalua Resort, a 22,000-acre spread on Maui’s northwest coast.

For a gem of a Hawaiian experience, The Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua, is a AAA Five-Diamond beachfront resort with 107 residential suites among its 463 guestrooms. From beachfront dining and Hawaiian spa treatments to poolside cabanas and cultural activities, the resort’s 54 acres showcase what Maui is all about.

At Montage Kapalua Bay, comfort comes in many forms, from architecture and local art to culinary and spa offerings. Memories can be made while relaxing by the multi-tiered lagoon pool or while dining on island-inspired cuisine in one of the resort’s restaurants or bars. Rooms are set up to be homes away from home, with residential-style accommodations featuring living rooms, private lanais, kitchens, master suites and luxurious bathrooms. For a special and intimate occasion, the Montage’s Cliff House is an elevated seaside abode with views of Lanai and Molokai that is ideal for meetings, weddings, rehearsal dinners or casual barbecues.

Rounding out the overnight options are Kapalua Villas Maui and the one-, two- and three-bedroom options with a kitchen, washer/dryer and views that encompass the West Maui Mountains, fairways and Pacific Ocean. As with the other resorts, guests also get preferred rates at the Plantation and Bay courses and use of the Kapalua Tennis Garden facilities.

“You can get what you need when you come out to Maui,” Markulis said. “From golf, relaxation or exploring, there’s something for everybody.”



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