Golf News for Friday, August 26, 2016 | Courses

GOLF Magazine bestows biennial "Best You Can Play" distinction on four Kaua'i golf courses

KAUA'I, Hawaii -- Four Kaua'i golf courses earned places in GOLF Magazine's "Best Courses You Can Play" by state rankings, a critical compilation of top-rated playing venues in America.

Princeville Makai Golf Club (The St. Regis Princeville Resort) ranks No. 4, Poipu Bay Golf Course (Grand Hyatt Kaua'i Resort & Spa) is No. 6, The Ocean Course at Hōkūala holds the No. 12 spot, and Puakea Golf Course joins at No. 14.

The biennial rankings by GOLF Magazine cover public courses in each of the 50 states, based on a variety of factors including course routing and variety, conditioning, value, overall playability and memorability.

"Players who visit Kaua'i can trust that they'll enjoy thrilling golf with breathtaking scenery in a garden-like setting," says Sue Kanoho, executive director of the Kaua'i Visitor's Bureau. "These four honored courses, along with our extraordinary municipal course, Wailua, combine to create a unique golf destination filled with memorable playing experiences."

Located on the North Shore, Princeville Makai Golf Club is a Robert Trent Jones Jr. design that provides panoramic ocean and mountain views, challenging golfers as it winds its way to the magnificent coastline.

Poipu Bay, which hosted the PGA Grand Slam of Golf for 12 years is another Robert Trent Jones, Jr. masterpiece. The ocean-links style course is set between lush mountains and 150-foot ocean cliffs.

The Ocean Course at Hōkūala is the lone Jack Nicklaus Signature Design course on Kaua'i. It boasts the longest stretch of continuous ocean holes in Hawaii. The course's back nine is open for play, while the front nine is undergoing renovations and will reopen this fall.

Robin-Nelson-designed Puakea Golf Course is built among volcanic cliffs and massive ravines, presenting a bevy of shotmaking challenges and mountain views. It's also one of the best golf values in Hawaii.

About Kaua'i Golf
Kaua'i offers more than 50 miles of white sand beaches -- more beach per mile than any other island in Hawaii -- with roughly five percent of the island developed for commercial and residential use. The Kaua'i golf destination is a cooperative of five world-class golf courses and three award-winning resorts:

1. Princeville Makai Golf Club (, 808.826.1912)
• Re-opened in 2010 following an extensive renovation. The Makai Course has since been ranked by Golf Digest as one of "America's 100 Greatest Public Golf Courses" in 2015.
• Designed by Robert Trent Jones, Jr., the 18-hole Makai Course incorporates serene lakes and stunning ocean coastline; the leisurely 9-hole Woods Course winds through native woodlands against a backdrop of lush mountains
• The St. Regis Princeville Resort is home to the Halele'a Spa and The Kaua'i Grill by Jean-Georges Vongerichten

2. The Ocean Course at Hōkūala (, 800.634.6400)
• It has been named one of the "World's Most Beautiful Golf Courses" by MSN Travel.
• The championship 18-hole Ocean Course features the longest continuous stretch of ocean holes in Hawaii with over ½ mile of oceanfront golf.
• The front nine holes are highlighted by the par-3, fifth green encircled by a tropical Mango and Guava tree forest
• The only Jack Nicklaus Signature Golf experience on Kaua'i

3. Poipu Bay Golf Course (, 800.858.6300)
• Along with Grand Hyatt Kaua'i Resort & Spa, Poipu Bay has been honored by Conde Nast Traveler as one of the top golf resorts in the U.S.
• Named to Golf Digest's "America's 100 Greatest Public Golf Courses" 2013-2014 and Golfweek's "Americaʻs Top 100 Resort Courses" 2015
• Home to the PGA Grand Slam of Golf from 1994 through 2006, it has frequently hosted players like Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, Vijay Singh and other major champions
• A Robert Trent Jones, Jr. design, the course underwent renovation and unveiled the eco-friendly Seashore Paspalum turf on all greens in 2011. Its four closing holes play atop a 150-foot sea cliff.
• The Grand Hyatt Kaua'i Resort & Spa completed a renovation in 2012 and features a water playground with river pool, waterfalls, a saltwater lagoon, tennis and the celebrated Anara Spa

4. Puakea Golf Course (, 866.773.5554)
• Rated "Best of Kaua'i" in 2015 and 2014 by local golfers, ranked the No. 15 best course in Hawaii by Golfweek
• Consistently rated a favorite among Kaua'i golfers in local media outlets for its exceptional value
• Golf Course Architect Robin Nelson used the natural layout of the land when he planned the course, testing all levels of play
• Puakea's 18 holes treat golfers to beautiful views of Mt. Ha'upu and deep lush ravines on several holes, which served as the backdrop to the original Jurassic Park movie
• Owned by AOL co-Founder Steve Case

5. Wailua Golf Course (, 808.241.6666)
• Regarded as one of the most beautiful municipal courses in the U.S., Wailua was recently named the No. 3 public course in Hawaii by Golf Channel
• The course's original holes date back to the 1920's. The course expanded to 18 holes in 1962 under the direction of Hawaii Golf Hall of Famer Toyo Shirai.
• Easily accessible from the Lihue airport, the scenic public course is a favorite of island golfers and tourists alike.

For more information on golf on Kaua'i and to stay up-to-date on the latest news and happenings, visit