The legendary Princeville (Kauai) Makai Golf Club has started a  $3 million course refinement project that is designed to enhance playability, boost agronomic conditions, and strengthen the Robert Trent Jones, Jr.-design’s standing as one of the top golf courses in the world. 

The project will address three key areas of the course: bunker renovations, cart path upgrades and agronomic enhancements, including drainage improvements and practices to continue strong turf health. Princeville Makai, located on Kauai’s famed North Shore, averages 78 inches of rain each year.

The project began with nine holes shut down for construction for approximately six weeks, with work on the remaining nine holes over six additional weeks. Nine holes will always be open during the refinement project, with nine-hole and 18-hole rounds available for guests. For 18-hole rounds, guests will be encouraged to play different tees during their second loop. Plans call for the 12-week project to be completed and all 18 holes open for play by mid-July. Guests can continue to book tee times at

Key elements of the refinement project include:

  • Comprehensive bunker renovation to all bunkers on the golf course, incorporating a technically advanced drainage and liner system featuring Capillary Concrete. This new generation lining method increases the speed at which water flows through the bunker, minimizing washouts, reducing maintenance and producing superior playability.
  • Drainage improvements will be executed in key areas to enhance playability and turf health
  • Guest experiences will be enhanced through cart path improvement in select areas
  • During construction, crews will execute an aggressive aeration of the Seashore Paspalum turf so air, water and nutrients can reach grass roots.

Troon Senior Vice President of Golf Course Development Ron Despain is leading the bunker renovations and cart path changes, with construction work executed by Heritage Links. Agronomy projects will be done in collaboration with Princeville Makai Golf Club Superintendent Chris Parde, the club’s agronomy team and Troon Senior Vice President of Science and Agronomy Jeff Spangler.

“It’s exciting and gratifying to have an ownership team that invests back into the product, and shares the goal of keeping Princeville Makai Golf Club among the top golf courses in the world,” said Princeville Makai Golf Club General Manager Michael Neider. “The bunker enhancements, cart path improvements, drainage refinements and turf management projects will further elevate our guests’ experiences for years to come.”

Princeville Makai Golf Club opened in 1971 as the first solo effort of golf course architect Robert Trent Jones, Jr. In 2009 and 2010, the course was completely renovated by Jones Jr., introducing spectacular new Seashore Paspalum turf grass on all fairways and greens. 

Located along the storied stretch of Kauai’s North Shore, Princeville Makai Golf Club is managed by Troon Golf, the resort and daily-fee division of Troon.

With six oceanfront holes overlooking the stunning North Shore, picturesque views of Makana, commonly referred to as Bali Hai from the 1958 film “South Pacific” and dozens of waterfalls cascading from nearby peaks (Nāmolokama and Māmalahoa), Princeville Makai Golf Club is the definition of golf in paradise.  In addition to golf, Princeville Makai Golf Club is also home to Sunset Golf Cart Tours, the Mauka Disc Golf Course, Sunrise Yoga and a popular tennis facility.

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Photo Courtesy of Troon