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Course recommendations for the Big Island


golfish!
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I believe I had a topic on this before but with all the changes (reading that many golf courses in Hawaii are permanently closed now) I am looking for recommendations for courses on the Big Island. Will be there in March for a wedding weekend of 3/20. Since we are staying at the Royal Kona, I get a discount on the Kailua-Kona course. Any other recommendations? TIA.

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14 minutes ago, 2puttbogey said:

Big Island Country Club if it's open. Hokulea. Waimea is nice as well. Of course there's all the resort courses that are very nice too.

Thanks! I will look into those. The resort courses are nice but will cost a pretty penny to play. Mauna Kea does have a 3 play package for 1 round there plus 2 at Hapuna for $500. Not sure if I want to be locked to those 2 courses though.

Big Island looks open and affordable. Hokulea looks to be private. Couldn't find Waimea.

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Driver : :taylormade-small: SIM2 Max 9* MC Kuro Kago Silver 60 Stiff

Woods : :benhogan-small: GS53 3 Wood 14* Mitsubish Tensei Blue 73g Regular

Hybrids: :callaway-small: XR Project X Stiff (3&4)

Irons : sub70logo.png.3c207e4e90c1eeca7b9a917b5fa4b848.png 699 Pro Black 5-AW 1* flat KBS Tour V 90 Stiff Shafts 

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2 hours ago, golfish! said:

 

Big Island looks open and affordable. Hokulea looks to be private. Couldn't find Waimea.

Wasn't sure about Hokulea it was just being finished when I moved. Looks like the waimea course closed( probably year's ago). 

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The Waikoloa Beach courses are pretty good. Nowhere near as fancy as Mauna Kea, but a lot less cost also. I played them in 2016, so condition could be an issue, but the layouts are good and fun to play.

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Get a teeoff deal and play Mauna Kea and Hapuna way cheaper than the $500 package you were offered.  Makani formerly known as Big Island Country Club is not bad but honestly probably shouldn't be top of your list for courses to play if you don't make it out to big island often.  Mauna Lani will open soon and those two courses are going to be a bit pricey potentially but worth it.  Kona Country Club isn't bad but can get hot.  I'll assume you don't have access to the private clubs or Four Seasons hook up as those should all be top of your list if you have access.  But for clubs that you will most likely have access to when here the general consensus rankings (I have played most of these but not the ones closed during covid) are probably close to the following:

1. Mauna Kea (tbh doesn't wow you the way I was expecting but everyone rates it very high and haven't played the Mauna Lani courses yet)

2. Mauna Lani North

3. Mauna Lani South

4. Waikoloa Kings Course

5. Waikoloa Beach Course

6. Hapuna Golf Course

7. Makani Golf Club

8. Kona Country Club

9. Waikoloa Village Golf 

10. Makalei Golf Club (This is one of my favorite dog tracks, could be a gem if it was well kept, terrible conditions usually, bring lots of balls if you play it it's in a jungle)

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9 hours ago, MarcelDionne said:

Get a teeoff deal and play Mauna Kea and Hapuna way cheaper than the $500 package you were offered.  Makani formerly known as Big Island Country Club is not bad but honestly probably shouldn't be top of your list for courses to play if you don't make it out to big island often.  Mauna Lani will open soon and those two courses are going to be a bit pricey potentially but worth it.  Kona Country Club isn't bad but can get hot.  I'll assume you don't have access to the private clubs or Four Seasons hook up as those should all be top of your list if you have access.  But for clubs that you will most likely have access to when here the general consensus rankings (I have played most of these but not the ones closed during covid) are probably close to the following:

1. Mauna Kea (tbh doesn't wow you the way I was expecting but everyone rates it very high and haven't played the Mauna Lani courses yet)

2. Mauna Lani North

3. Mauna Lani South

4. Waikoloa Kings Course

5. Waikoloa Beach Course

6. Hapuna Golf Course

7. Makani Golf Club

8. Kona Country Club

9. Waikoloa Village Golf 

10. Makalei Golf Club (This is one of my favorite dog tracks, could be a gem if it was well kept, terrible conditions usually, bring lots of balls if you play it it's in a jungle)

Great list! Yes this will actually be my first time going to Hawaii so I am wiling to pay a bit more since I don't know the next time I will be out there. Thanks!

14 hours ago, 2puttbogey said:

Wasn't sure about Hokulea it was just being finished when I moved. Looks like the waimea course closed( probably year's ago). 

No problem still appreciate the recommendations!

Driver : :taylormade-small: SIM2 Max 9* MC Kuro Kago Silver 60 Stiff

Woods : :benhogan-small: GS53 3 Wood 14* Mitsubish Tensei Blue 73g Regular

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Wow @MarcelDionne those teeoff deal times are a crazy discount over regular rates. Hopefully I can snag one as the time gets close.

Driver : :taylormade-small: SIM2 Max 9* MC Kuro Kago Silver 60 Stiff

Woods : :benhogan-small: GS53 3 Wood 14* Mitsubish Tensei Blue 73g Regular

Hybrids: :callaway-small: XR Project X Stiff (3&4)

Irons : sub70logo.png.3c207e4e90c1eeca7b9a917b5fa4b848.png 699 Pro Black 5-AW 1* flat KBS Tour V 90 Stiff Shafts 

Wedges : File:Kirkland Signature logo.svg - Wikimedia Commons 52, 56, 60 

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I used to spend every winter on the Big Island when I was a kid growing up in Vegas. I have family there and my mom would ship me up here for winter break (yes I'm very blessed) so I could keep playing golf through the cold weather when the courses in Vegas would shut down. I've played nearly every course on the island, except for the newer ones, or ones that had changed owners/names. The list that @MarcelDionne posted is very very good and you can't go wrong playing either of them.

Personally, if I were to take a guest/family member from the mainland, my list would be:

1. Mauna Kea - The signature hole just can't be beat.

2. Hualalai - It's a Four Seasons resort, do I need to say more? It's in a very very very very close 2nd to Mauna Kea for me

3/4/5. In no particular order - Mauna Lani, Hapuna, Waikoloa Kings

Any other course you're considering I would just say save up some extra money before you get here and pay up. Like you said, who knows the next time you're going to fly all the way over here. Soak it all in, spend lots of money to help our economy (thanks), and don't trash the place -- leave it how it was when you got here 🙂

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3 hours ago, MarcelDionne said:

@yungkoryI may have been given bad info as I'm here now and the course is not open.  But don't you need to be a guest at the Four Seasons or of a local property owner there to get access to even pay to play the course?  If you know of a way to get on i'd definitely like to know.  Thanks

I'm pretty sure kamaaina can play there no? I haven't played there for years so maybe they changed something, but @mr.hicksta and I had plans to try and play there before he shipped out like a scrub.

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14 hours ago, MarcelDionne said:

@yungkoryI may have been given bad info as I'm here now and the course is not open.  But don't you need to be a guest at the Four Seasons or of a local property owner there to get access to even pay to play the course?  If you know of a way to get on i'd definitely like to know.  Thanks

Yeah when I played, my friend was staying at Four Seasons so I believe that's accurate. I believe I could've played it even if that hadn't been the case since I'm active duty, but your best bet is to call them and find out. And for real, Manele is far and away the best course I played in Hawaii and it's not even close!

EDIT: My bad, I forgot this was about Big Island, haha! For Hualalai you have to be staying at the resort. So unless you know a member, you're dropping at least $1K to stay and play!

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10 hours ago, mr.hicksta said:

Yeah when I played, my friend was staying at Four Seasons so I believe that's accurate. I believe I could've played it even if that hadn't been the case since I'm active duty, but your best bet is to call them and find out. And for real, Manele is far and away the best course I played in Hawaii and it's not even close!

EDIT: My bad, I forgot this was about Big Island, haha! For Hualalai you have to be staying at the resort. So unless you know a member, you're dropping at least $1K to stay and play!

Now that I think about it, I think when I played it all those years ago my mom got a room at the resort and that might've been how we played. In any case... SWIPE THE CARD IT'S WORTH IT!

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On 10/23/2020 at 4:56 PM, yungkory said:

Now that I think about it, I think when I played it all those years ago my mom got a room at the resort and that might've been how we played. In any case... SWIPE THE CARD IT'S WORTH IT!

I would if I could but I think it is private anyway. Might try and call and ask. Couldn't hurt!

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  • 2 months later...

Mauna Kea is an amazing course. I got a good deal on Teeoff and the course did not disappoint. Unfortunately, they weren't very busy and I had to play by myself, but was a very relaxing round. No one was in front of me and no one was behind me the whole round.

Kona Country Club was nice as well and reasonable priced.

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Unfortunately due to COVID related issues, the wedding has been cancelled. Maybe next year ill get a chance to play on the island. Thanks for all the recommendations!

Driver : :taylormade-small: SIM2 Max 9* MC Kuro Kago Silver 60 Stiff

Woods : :benhogan-small: GS53 3 Wood 14* Mitsubish Tensei Blue 73g Regular

Hybrids: :callaway-small: XR Project X Stiff (3&4)

Irons : sub70logo.png.3c207e4e90c1eeca7b9a917b5fa4b848.png 699 Pro Black 5-AW 1* flat KBS Tour V 90 Stiff Shafts 

Wedges : File:Kirkland Signature logo.svg - Wikimedia Commons 52, 56, 60 

Putter : :taylormade-small:Spider Red

Bag : datrek-brand_1456761019__86876.original.jpg.7c24f9ae71c7730ce29a828226731487.jpg lightweight cart bag | motocaddy.jpg.258c0b46e60c2804fc6b1f64bca0aef3.jpgDry Series Bag

Ball :  :taylormade-small: TP5 PIX (2019) | Screen-Shot-2017-07-20-at-7_24.05-AM-300x118.png.9f1c4cb1d62511ee40a05bd6d5795f97.png ProV1x (2021)

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Late to the party and agree with all the recommendations except the Big Island Country Club. Took me 3 hours to make the turn and I quit in the middle of the 10th fairway. Didn't even care about the $185 greens fee, didn't want to spend my last full day on the island sitting in a golf cart.

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