Makena Means the "Land of Abundance and Plenty"
Discover beaches and activities only minutes from Makena Beach & Golf Resort, magically located in the exclusive resort destination of Wailea-Makena on Maui’s south side. From a breathtaking drive up the slopes of a dormant volcano ending at the Haleakala Visitor Center to many Maui beach experiences, there is truly something each guest will enjoy and our Maui location can’t be beat.
The Makena-Wailea area is abundantly beautiful and offers plenty to see and do. The Makena Beach & Golf Resort is situated on 1800 acres at the southwestern end of Maui, where the slopes of Hawaii's largest dormant volcano meet the rocky lava shoreline and sandy beaches of the Pacific Ocean. The resort is just 19 miles (31 km) from Kahului Airport, and 37 miles from the top of the house of the sun, Mt. Haleakala.
Located on a choice parcel of land at the end of a scenic shoreline drive, Makena Beach & Golf Resort is an oasis of seclusion fronting a pristine quarter-mile-long sandy beach, rolling golf greens, lush gardens, and a natural kiawe forest. In every direction, nature's bounty and beauty calls to you, from sea to mountain top.
- Kahului: 40 minutes, 18.5 miles
- Kapalua: 59 minutes, 36.0 miles
- Hana: 2 hours & 19 minutes, 82.9 miles
MAKENA RESORT PROXIMITY
- Latitude, Longitude: (20.689164), (-156.440188)
- Shops at Wailea: 6 minutes, 2.8 miles
- Kahului: 32 minutes, 18.1 miles
- Kihei: 17 minutes, 7.7 miles
- Lahaina: 50 minutes, 29.9 miles
- Kaanapali: 57 minutes, 34.3 miles
- Hana: 2 hours & 13 minutes, 80.5 miles
History of Makena
There are a few places left in Hawai'i where it is possible to walk along quiet stretches of sand and see waves splash on ancient and storied Hawaiian shores. One such area is Makena. Here you will find yourself surrounded by the marvels of nature. On one side looms the 10,000 foot dormant volcano, Haleakala, and on the other side lies the blue Pacific with Molokini Crater and the Islands of Kahoolawe, Lana'i and Molokai in the distance.
Over a hundred Hawaiian families called Makena home from the earliest days of record until the mid-1920's. Remnants of their culture—ancient fish ponds and ruins of old temples—can still be found and explored nearby. They farmed akule and other types of fish from the sea and built fish ponds near La Perouse Bay.
After Captain James Cook happened upon the Sandwich Isles (so named for the Earl of Sandwich), opening the door to Western colonialism, Makena became a thriving seaport, second only to Lahaina, the bustling whaler's village across the bay on the west end of the island. Sweet potatoes and other produce, grown in Maui's fertile valleys, were loaded onto cargo ships headed for the golden shores of California.
By the late 1850's, a sugar Plantation on the slopes of Mt. Haleakala (the world's largest dormant volcano) was sold to a retired sea captain, James Makee. By 1866, under his stewardship, the Makee Sugar Mill ranked third in tonnage among the ten mills then operating in Hawaii. Makee died, and a subsequent severe drought forced the closing of the mill and plantation. Makee's beloved Rose Ranch, known throughout the region for its beauty and hospitality, was sold to the Dowsett family in 1886 and renamed Ulupalakua Ranch. The Dowsetts switched to cattle ranching. Makena Landing's prominence grew with the shipping of cattle. Upcountry ranchers brought their animals and swam them out, tied to long boats, to awaiting ships where they were lifted by "donkey cranes" onto the ship.
In 1832, missionaries founded a ministry at Makena and, in 1855, built Keawala'i Church out of lava rocks and cement or puna made from crushed coral cut from nearby reefs. Keawala'i means, "the calm bay." To this day, church leaders still minister to an active congregation, and the historic church remains one of the more prominent historic landmarks in Makena.
During World War II, the U.S. Army occupied Makena for its obvious strategic location. They built barracks, bunkers and the shoreline road, using Makena as a training and military exercise site. During this time, the historic pier was torn down at Makena Landing, ending its days as an active trading port. After the war, few of the original residents returned to live in the area and it remained undeveloped and secluded, its natural beauty and abundant reefs known only to a few fisherman. By the time statehood was approved, in 1959, Hawaii's burgeoning new major industry had become tourism.
By the late 1970's, resort development on Maui was blossoming. The island's natural beauty, spectacular beaches, and balmy weather beckoned travelers from near and far. Japan-based developers Seibu Hawaii, Inc. acquired an 1800-acre, prime beachfront parcel of land at Makena. Situated between a spectacular crescent-shaped beach and the verdant slopes of Mount Haleakala, Seibu Hawaii, Inc. built a Robert Trent Jones-designed, 18-hole golf course with restaurant which opened for play in August, 1981.
In fall of 1983, Seibu broke ground on a six-story, A-shaped resort with 310 rooms and suites, uniquely designed by Anbe, Aruga, and Ishizu Architects, Inc. of Honolulu so that all offered stunning full or partial ocean views with private lanais.
Makena Beach Resort
5400 Makena Alanui