Editor's Note: Makena Beach & Golf Resort has closed.
Makena Beach & Golf Resort (formerly the Maui Prince Hotel) is located on a secluded stretch of South Maui. The hotel beach is fabulous and one of the best we've seen on Maui. You can spend your days snorkeling just off the beach, dining by the pool and watching spectacular sunsets from the Molokini Lounge.
The hotel is designed around a beautiful courtyard with a waterfall, Koi pond and lush tropical plants. When you wake up in the morning, walk through the courtyard garden to Cafe Kiowai and have breakfast outdoors overlooking the Koi pond.
The white-sand Malu'aka Beach is quite empty and easy to get to from the guest rooms following a paved path surrounded by blooming flowers past the swimming pool. You should definitely try snorkeling just off the beach; we saw a sea turtle and a variety of tropical fish. The beach activities cottage rents masks, snorkels and fins, but at $18 per day you are better off bringing your own snorkeling gear.
The rooms are arranged around the courtyard garden with the best rooms facing the ocean. Try to book an ocean front or an ocean view room and you will be able to see the water right from your bed. The rooms feature large private terraces which are perfect if you decide to order room service and dine accompanied by the sounds of the ocean.
Guest rooms are furnished with coastal-style wooden furniture, including a desk, media cabinet with drawers and a side table which can hold a large suitcase. The hallways are spacious and the bathroom has a vanity area.
Ocean view rooms have two comfortable sitting areas, one indoor and one outdoor. The indoor chairs, padded with pillows, are ideal for reading and relaxing. A sliding door leads out to a spacious private terrace with another table and two chairs.
If you're about to take your first vacation to Hawaii there is something you definitely must watch out for - sweet delicious tropical drinks. You'll can get addicted to Mai Tais in no time. For honeymooners and those romantic at heart, sunset cocktails are just one of those things you will not want to miss. Molokini Bar & Grille is one of the best places to enjoy them. It is named after the small Molokini island just off the coast of South Maui. Get to the bar at sunset and you can watch the island assume different shades of orange and pink as the sun plunges into the ocean.
Things to Do
In addition to a spectacular golf course and a tennis center, the hotel offers a selection of watersports and beach activities. Table tennis, badminton and other sports are offered to hotel guests free of charge. There is a daily scuba demonstration - if you like it, sign up for a beginner lesson at the Beach Activity Center. On certain days, yoga and Pilates are offered early in the morning. Find more Maui golf ideas.
Courtyard Garden and Breakfast Overlooking the Koi Pond
The Japanese-style inner courtyard is a beautiful place to relax on a stone bench, look at the diverse plants and listen to the birds. The open-air design is beautiful and it provides a sense of connection with the nature outside. The lobby features giant doors which open out onto the courtyard. When you walk from your room to one of the restaurants, you will pass through open-air hallways with a view of the flowers and trees in the courtyard. There is a waterfall where you can take pictures and tell everyone at home that you went on a strenuous two-hour hike to get there. The Koi pond is filled with fish and plants. In the morning, enjoy breakfast overlooking the pond.
Breakfast is the best meal of the day and the setting is as important as the food that is served. Landscaping touches at Cafe Kiowah include a Koi pond, palm trees and fragrant tropical flowers. If you want to be close to the buffet table, you can ask to be seated indoors. The best ambiance, however, is outside on the terrace overlooking the pond. For lunch, our favorite was the Makena Clubhouse at the Golf Club. If you are having fun on the beach and don't want to leave your shaded lounge chair, you can have a casual lunch next to the hotel pool. The Pool Bar offers a special menu for kids.Dinner options include contemporary island cuisine at the Prince Court and Japanese cuisine at Hakone. Molokini Lounge serves sandwiches and tropical drinks. Evening entertainment such as hula and live music is often offered at the Molokini Lounge. When you arrive, there will be a list of current hotel activities waiting for you in the room.
Sunrise Cruise to Molokini Island
When we first arrived on Maui, we were up early in the morning because of the time difference between the islands and the mainland. A sunrise cruise to Molokini is a perfect answer for those who want to get an early start.
A catamaran will pick you up from the hotel beach before sunrise and take you on a cruise to the small island of Molokini just off the coast of South Maui. The ride takes about 45 minutes each way, so you will be back before Cafe Kiowah closes for breakfast at 11am. Inquire about the sunrise cruise cost and reservations at the hotel's activity desk, or call before you go.
The Tennis Center
Tennis offers a great way to stay active on vacation and can be a fun activity for the whole family. And due to the drop in popularity of the sport, it's not difficult to get court times almost anytime you like. Makena Beach & Golf Resort has six Plexipave tennis courts, two lit for night play. The courts are located a few minutes from the main hotel building, right next to the golf courses. Leave your car parked and take the resort shuttle to the club.
After a game of tennis, have lunch at the Makena Clubhouse which serves delicious food from the grill and sinful deserts. You'll have a view of the ocean and golfers teeing off the South Course.
The famous crescent-shaped Molokini crater is only a 45-minute boat ride from the hotel. The hotel's activities desk offers morning snorkeling tours which last a couple of hours and will have you back on the beach by 10am for a day of sunbathing.
The activities desk in the hotel or near the beach can arrange scuba diving, hiking, biking down Haleakala and an array of other activities.
As you drive from the Kahului airport past Kihei and Wailea, it is easy to notice that the surroundings becomes more and more secluded. You will spot the Maui Prince Hotel on the right side of the road. The main building is almost hidden by palm trees, blooming hedges and fragrant trees. The Maui Prince Hotel is one of the most secluded hotels on the southern coast of Maui.
The hotel offers a variety of golf, spa, car and other Maui vacation packages, so check online before making your reservation. Book tee times before you go, especially during the high season.
The Makena Golf Course
The best time to play is in the morning before the Makena cloud descends from the slopes of Haleakala, the 10,028 foot-high dormant volcano. The could brings shade and sometimes light rain for a few minutes before it heads out to the ocean. Greens fees start at $99.
After your round, enjoy a lunch with a view at the Cafe on the Green. Grilled meat, Mahi Mahi and huge salads are delicious. Perched above the hotel, the restaurant overlooks the golf course and the ocean. Choose from soups, a selection of grilled fish & meat, and large healthy salads. Everything we tried off the grill was delicious. Salads and sandwiches cost around $11. While you eat, you can watch groups of golfers tee off on the golf course.
Cafe on the Green serves casual fare from 11am to 6:30pm (times may vary depending on the season, so call before you go to confirm that the kitchen is open). Even if you do not play golf, the cafe is a great spot for a casual lunch. The restaurant offers tables indoors and outdoors. Some of the outdoor seats are under a roof, in the sun and under a screen providing partial shade.
If you are staying at the hotel, you can leave your car valet parked and catch the shuttle to the golf club instead. When you are ready to go back, go onto the Pro Shop and request a van pickup.
Arrive at the cafe well before your tee time, especially between 1pm and 2:30pm so that you will not feel rushed while you wait for your meal to be served. And if it turns out that you have time to spare you can always order one of the sinful deserts, such as Chocolate fudge with whip cream.
Plan This Trip:
Partial Oceanview room rates start at $199 per night plus tax. There is no resort fee and valet parking is included. Unlimited golf packages start at $465 for two golfers per night, including breakfast.
Location: 5400 Makena Alanui , Makena, Maui , Hawaii , United States , 800-321-6284, 808-874-1111