The Royal Ka’anapali Course, a Robert Trent Jones, Sr. design managed by Billy Casper Golf, opened in 1962 and has tested the skills of professional and amateur golfers alike. The Royal Ka’anapali Course is also one of only two courses in all of Hawaii designed by Robert Trent Jones. A par-71, 6,700-yard layout, the Royal Course layout takes full advantage of the rolling landscape to create gently sloping fairways and large contoured greens making it as distinctive as it is demanding. The course follows the shoreline before meandering into the foothills of the West Maui Mountains for a challenging, and exciting, round of golf.
The Royal Ka'anapali Course layout begins at sea level with a par 5 that plays 550 yards, and ends with a par 4 that .Arnold Palmer called one of the best and most challenging finishing holes he had ever played. The 18th, 450 yards from the tips - it plays longer than it looks – is bordered by a canal that hugs the entire length of the fairway and green[ ir’s quite an experience.
With more than 45 years of tournament history, the Royal Course has hosted many of golf’s greatest legends: Arnold Palmer, Gary Player, Jack Nicklaus, Billy Casper, Jan Stephenson and Nancy Lopez.
The resort underwent a $13 million renovation in 2005-2006 and hosted the Wendy’s Champions Tour SKINS Game on ESPN in February 2008. The two-day event – featuring Nicklaus, Palmer, Player, Tom Watson, Jay Haas, Loren Roberts, Fuzzy Zoeller and Peter Jacobson – drew more than 8,000 spectators. Ka’anapali was selected by The Golf Channel to host “Big Break Ka’anapali” that aired this April through July.
Ka’anapali Golf Resort’s Royal Ka’anapali Course received a rating of 4.5-stars from Golf Digest in October of 2008 “Best Places You Can Play.”
This puts Ka’anapali in elite company with other famous courses Golf Digest awarded 4.5 stars. They include U.S. Open sites Torrey Pines (CA), Pinehurst (NC) and Bethpage (NY); PGA TOUR hosts Quail Hollow (OH) and TPC of Louisiana; LPGA Tour venues Kingsmill Golf Resort (VA) and Pumpkin Ridge Golf Club (OR); and resorts The Greenbrier (WV), The Homestead (VA), Turnberry Isle (FL) and more.
Golf Digest's "Best Places to Play" guide rates 4,000 public and resort courses throughout the United States, Canada, Mexico and Caribbean. The ratings are based on 20,000 ballots completed by subscribers and golfers who grade courses on a five-point scale for service, value, pace of play and overall experience.
“It’s a true mark of distinction that Ka’anapli’s exceptional rating from this prominent industry publication parallels that of other top-tier courses and resorts,” says Ed Kageyama, PGA General Manager of Ka’anapali. “We take great pride in providing golfers with outstanding playing conditions and first-class customer service they won’t soon forget.”For more information about Ka’anapali, or to reserve a tee time, visit the Royal Kaalipani Website or call 808.661.3691.
Where to Stay in Maui:
There are, of course, quite a few resort options in Maui. Here are a few of my favorites:
- Compare Prices on nights for the Sheraton Maui Resort
- Compare Prices on nights for The Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua
- Compare Prices on nights for Hyatt Regency Maui Resort and Spa
- Compare Prices on nights for Marriott's Maui Ocean Club
- Compare Prices on nights for the The Whaler on Kaanapali Beach
How to get There:
Kahului Airport (OGG) is located on the northern edge of the land bridge between Haleakala and the West Maui Mountain Range on the island of Maui.
Look for the best airline and car rental deals with these two aggregators, which provide travelers with an up-to-date search tool to compare prices on airfares and car rentals of all ratings:
About Billy Casper Golf:
Headquartered in Vienna, Virginia, Billy Casper Golf was co-founded by Robert Morris and Peter Hill in 1989 along with professional golf legend Billy Casper, the Masters and two-time U.S. Open winner who ranks seventh all-time with 51 PGA Tour wins. The company manages 96 golf courses in 23 states, the District of Columbia and Costa Rica. Combined with Buffalo Communications, the golf-lifestyle PR division of BCG, 24 of their courses were honored in the recent Golfweek’s “America’s Best” state-by-state rankings.
For more information about Billy Casper Golf, you can visit their website or call 703.761.1444.
And don’t forget: there are many other opportunities for great golf all over the world. Favorite locations include Scotland, Florida, the American Southwest, Bermuda, the Bahamas and many more. For up-to-date golf travel news and information, be sure to Subscribe to my weekly Newsletter.