Consistently ranked among the top of the world’s best resort hotels, Four Seasons Resort Hualālai is the located at the hub of the Hualalai Resort, an award winning residential resort community just 8 minutes north of Kona airport on The Big Island of Hawaii.
It all started in 1994, with the promise of a new luxury residential resort on the site of an old fishing village.
Two years later, Four Seasons Resort Hualālai opened their doors, and Jack NIcklaus unveiled his first design on The Big Island- Hualalai Golf Club.
In 2004 a second course designed by Tom Weiskopf opened: Ke'olu Golf Club.
For over twenty years now The Hualalai Resort has been regarded as one pf the premier resorts in the world.
Hualālai Golf Club
The Hualālai Golf Course is home to the prestigious PGA Tour Champions “Mitsubishi Electric Championship at Hualālai” event, which brings all the well known characters of the Seniors tour to enjoy the full hospitality of The Big Island. It is a popular event with the players, their families, members and the general public alike.
During the year, the course is available for play to Hualālai Club Members, their registered guests, registered rental guests and the guests of the Four Seasons Resort Hualālai.
The sister course: the Ke‘olu Course is only open for Hualālai Club members and their guests.
The Hualalai Course sets a rather placid pace early with nice, but unremarkable holes leading inland from the hotel over quietly rolling terrain
The fairways are generally wide, and the first cut is also wide and forgiving- it is all perfect for resort golf. However, Lava features lift the look and strategy of some holes nicely.
The par 5 seventh hole uses the lava to advantage framing the hole and creeping into the line of play, tightening the line of play considerably.
In the back nine things get a little more interesting!
Hole 12 has a bunker in the middle of the green akin to that on Riviera's famous 6th hole. It's only a short approach, but make sure you land on the right side of the bunker!
The key to this course though, is the big finish: holes 16, 17 & 18
Hole 16 is a longer par 4 that heads you straight to the ocean, and invariably into the breeze. It is a picturesque approach as the pounding surf forms a backdrop to the green. The hole is nicely bunkered, and requires a well struck shot that takes into account the increased wind exposure.
Then you turn the corner, and boom!
Hole 17 is a wonderful little par 3 right on the waterfront.
Depending on your which teeing ground you have selected you may need to carry the ocean to approach the green. Either way you will be terribly aware of the white caps pounding on the rocky coastline just metres from where you take your stance. Inevitably the wind will affect your flight, and although the green is forgiving, you will always be pleased to land safely.
The green setting is absolutely gorgeous, surrounded by white water on a rocky promontory. Take a moment, and look back to the tee. Take another photo. It’s a moment you will want to remember..
In time you will move to the final hole. At the back of the championship tees Jack has positioned a park bench where you can have a quiet moment, take in the surrounding beach scene and prepare for the final hole. Hole 18 is a longer par 4 with a water carry off the tee to a fairway angling away to the left and protected by bunkers. Take as bold a line as you dare, and be rewarded with a shorter approach. The view to the hole is dominated by bunker after bunker protecting the more direct line to the green. A par here is well earned!
Hualalai is a lovely place to play golf on that dream Hawaiian holiday. It's not the best course in Hawaii, but it is well designed, nicely maintained, and has some real Kodak moments at the end of the round.
The Travelling Golfer can tailor a golf tour to Hawaii for your group. For itinerary suggestions please see Great Golf Destinations: Hawaii- Golf on The Big Island
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