The Pros’ Favorite Holes

We challenged five Maui pros to pick their favorite hole on their home course and share tips for playing it successfully.

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The Dunes at Maui Lani • Hole No. 3
145 Yards • Par Three
Course Designer: Robin Nelson

“It’s not a long hole, but it can get you into a lot of trouble.”
—Dave Gleason
General Manager & Director of Golf
The Dunes at Maui Lani

Designer Robin Nelson modeled this short par three after the famous fifth hole at Lahinch Golf Club in Ireland. The semiblind par three is bracketed by sand dunes and influenced by stiff trade winds that sweep from right to left and make club selection paramount.

“It really depicts what we are known for,” says course General Manager Dave Gleason. “It has a natural feel. The third hole really says, ‘The Dunes.’”

The hole’s long, narrow green provides a verdant target, but it’s not easy to hit. Deep bunkers are just part of the sand challenge; it’s common for golfers to find themselves scrambling to recover with shots from the dunes themselves.

How to Play It

The key to this hole is properly gauging the wind and distance.

“It’s not a long hole, but it can get you into a lot of trouble,” Gleason says. “It’s  very important to hit that green.”

Miss short or to the right and you will be chipping from the fine white sand of the dunes or one of the deep bunkers. Miss long and you’ll find yourself in the rough with a very tricky downhill chip shot. In general, you are better off short than long. Gleason’s suggested shot is a fade into the green that lets the ball feed back to the hole.

The green has two main landing areas with a crown in the middle. Its grain runs west toward the setting sun.

“Except for a few areas where the dunes come into play, the green has very subtle breaks,” Gleason says.

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