The cost of green fees and club rentals for golfers visiting the island of Maui can often be prohibitive. It’s no surprise, really, because Maui boasts some of the most spectacularly beautiful golf courses in the world. The Plantation Course at Kaanapali, for example is home to the PGA Tour’s Tournament of Champions. It is a course that attracts the world’s most elite and accomplished professional golfers. Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, and Ernie Els are just a few of the marquee names who have travelled to Maui to play. The cost of green fees, club rental and cart rental can run into the hundreds of dollars for visiting duffers.
But there is one course, Maui Nui, which affords guests of the Makena Beach & Golf Resort the opportunity to play a championship course on Maui without breaking the bank. Located just outside of Kihei on Lipoa Parkway, Maui Nui is located conveniently near the resort (about a 10-15 minute drive).
For guests of the Makena Beach & Golf Resort, Maui Nui may just be the best golf value on Maui. After booking our suite through Hawaii Aloha Travel (thanks, Bruce and Yaling!), my wife and I learned from the Concierge Desk that they offer guests a great deal on a round of golf at Maui Nui. The Concierge filled us in on an offer that included green fees, cart rental, club rental, a bucket of range balls, and lunch, all for just $109 per golfer. For comparison, the green fees at other nearby courses in Wailea started at $150, without club or cart rental.
The pro shop, the starter, and the course marshal were all friendly and helpful. The rental clubs were top-of-the-line and came with two sleeves of balls. When a group of four aunties showed a glacial pace ahead of us on the first hole, the marshal had them let us play through (it was just my wife and I). They smiled and waved cheerfully as we passed.
The course itself may not hold the prestige of some courses in Kaanapali and Wailea, but the views it offers are equally compelling: the West Maui Mountains, Haleakala, Molokai, and Lanai are all prominent from the many broad vistas visible throughout Maui Nui’s 18 holes.
The opening hole is inviting but challenging. It features a wide open fairway, but it plays significantly uphill. There are several holes at Maui Nui that feature significant elevation changes. Virtually every single hole, however, offers views that will have any golfer reaching for their camera phone.
For most die-hard golfers, playing a round in paradise on Maui is a lifelong dream and it stays a dream. But Maui Nui offers even modest budgets a chance to make that dream come true.