2010 Vancouver Olympians can celebrate their medals with new WestJet direct flight to Kauai and reopened Princeville Makai
Lets consider for a minute that back as a youngster in Michigan, I passed up golf and pursued my ice hockey career a little more vigilantly, I had a little more talent and hit puberty just a little earlier…
That might just mean I could be suiting up next month as Team USA’s starting ice hockey goaltender in the Winter Olympic Games in Vancouver - and not living out the dream in Texas men’s leagues.
And lets consider a little further that during the Olympic Games I put on my best Jim Craig impression and led Team USA to gold with a dominating performance between the pipes in the gold medal game over the hometown Canadians.
Well that’d just be cause to celebrate. And I’d be darned tempted to jump straight on a plane to golf in Hawaii, and Vancouver has a brand new direct flight to Kauai, which makes a strong case as Hawaii’s best golfing island pound-for-pound. Canadian operator WestJet began the new non-stop service in December, which run twice a week between Vancouver and Kauai’s Lihue airport, just around the corner from the Kauai Marriott Resort and Puakea Golf Course. WestJet also offers daily flights to Honolulu as well as inter-island flights. Introductory fares from Vancouver-Lihue start at $349 plus taxes & fees.
If you failed to max out your potential as an Olympic athlete like me and won’t be at the games, you can get to Kauai direct from Seattle, Los Angeles, Phoenix and San Francisco - or just connect in Honolulu from your hub.
Aside from the new direct service, another reason to check out Kauai is that the Princeville Resort’s Makai golf course just reopened 18 of their 27 holes after a lengthy renovation project. The Makai redesign intrigues me the most out of all the many happenings on Kauai right now (including the new St. Regis Hotel at Princeville and Kauai Lagoons renovation project), because of the potential I saw on the the golf course back when I played it in the spring of 2008, just before it went under the knife.
Built in 1972, the course has some of the best ocean frontage on Kauai, including the par-3 7th tee shot over cliffs and crashing waves to the green. Several other holes have ocean views but needed a little facelift to max out the “wow” factors. Hopefully the course wasn’t redesigned too hard by Robert Trent Jones Jr. because the Prince Course next door can be pretty tough. If you’re spending three days in Princeville, I’d recommend playing the Makai first, then the tougher Prince, then save your 3rd day to pick whether you’d like another crack at redemption on the Prince - or try to go low on the Makai.
If RTJ Jr. did his job right and Troon Golf ensures conditions are as good as I would expect a facility managed by them to be, I see no reason why the Makai shouldn’t be ranked as high as any of the courses on Kauai, which would in turn mean it should be in the discussion as one of the top golf courses in Hawaii.
Here is my course review of the Princeville Makai (pre-renovation in 2008) - and “>here’s my course review of the Prince Course at Princeville. Our newly revamped HawaiiGolf.com site also just published a “best of Kauai golf” photo gallery to boot.
If you’ve played the new Makai, we’d love to get your brief thoughts on WorldGolf.com’s exit polls. Click here to post a review of the course.
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