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Kapalua (Plantation)

Lahaina, Hawaii
Lahaina, Hawaii
Rankings
  • Address800 Kapalua Dr, Lahaina, HI 96761, USA

The recently transformed Kapalua Resort is located on Maui's northwest shore and the Hawaiian resort can boast two world-class golf courses. The Arnold Palmer and Francis Duane designed Bay course was the first layout at Kapalua, and it’s a decent resort course in its own right, but the Bill Coore & Ben Crenshaw designed par 73, 7,411-yard Plantation course is in a totally different league.

In Golf Magazine’s Top 100 Courses You Can Play book by Brian McCallen, the author has this to say about the course: “Tall native grasses frame the fairways, with a few stands of Norfolk Pines scattered around the perimeter. No water comes into play, but there’s an abundance of luxuriant growth sprouting from the gorges. The antithesis of a target-style course, the Plantation offers oodles of options, along with its grand ocean vistas. Greens are open at the front; barely airborne bump-an-run approach shots are not only encouraged, they’re necessary to control the ball in the wind.”

Host to the annual Tournament of Champions, the Plantation course was fashioned around the closing hole, a 663-yard downhill and invariably downwind par five. The panoramic backcloth of the glistening Pacific Ocean and the distant mountain peaks take your breath away as you stand on the elevated final tee. The wide fairway tumbles downhill inviting a booming drive. Despite its downhill and downwind design, only the biggest hitters will be brave enough to take this incredible hole on in two shots because the approach shot must carry across a chasm which cuts into the fairway from the right. The green is huge and inviting, but unless you can hit the ball more than 300 yards, you’ll be left with a similar distance for your second shot. Are you up for it?

In March 2018, it was announced that Kapalua’s Plantation course will undergo a multi-million dollar renovation project under the stewardship of Bill Coore and Ben Crenshaw, the original design team. Work will include new tournament and forward tees, greens resurfacing with Tif Eagle Bermuda, fairways with Celebration Bermuda and renovation of every bunker.

“We look forward to the opportunity to restore many elements of the Plantation Course and implement a few ‘refinements’,” said Bill Coore. “It’s like when you have a special piece of art, or something really special to you, and you get a chance to dust if off and make it new again. This will be a very thoughtful restoration and refining process, but it’s not a redesign. We are very happy with the way the course looks and the way it has gone through the past nearly three decades.”

Course restoration work began in February 2019 and completed in November 2019 ahead of January's Sentry Tournament of Champions, which Justin Thomas won after beating compatriots Patrick Reed and Xander Schauffele in a play-off.

The recently transformed Kapalua Resort is located on Maui's northwest shore and the Hawaiian resort can boast two world-class golf courses. The Arnold Palmer and Francis Duane designed Bay course was the first layout at Kapalua, and it’s a decent resort course in its own right, but the Bill Coore & Ben Crenshaw designed par 73, 7,411-yard Plantation course is in a totally different league.

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Course Architect

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Coore & Crenshaw

Coore and Crenshaw Inc. was established in 1986, but five years passed before the partnership made a real architectural impact when the Plantation course at Kapalua burst onto the scene in 1991.

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