Maui Adventures

New attractions open at Kapalua Resort

By: Marty Wentzel

This is the first Image
The Kapalua Adventures zipline
offers ocean and mountain views.
Napalua Resort is moving one step closer to its goal of becoming a one-stop shop for active, upscale travelers with the opening this month of its Kapalua Adventure Center and Mountain Outpost.

“We’ve been listening to what our guests and the travel industry have been saying relating to adventure activities, and we’ve spent the last two years developing a state-of-the-art, dynamic, safe, educational and environmentally friendly program,” said Adam Quinn, the activities director for Kapalua Resort.

The new attraction features one of the largest and longest (2,200 feet) zipline systems in North America, complete with eight dual-track runs, two suspension bridges, a comprehensive high ropes challenge course and a four-station climbing tower. The zipline system rises above the tree canopy, deep ravines and natural features of the Northwest Maui resort.

Adding to the adventure, the Mountain Outpost experience offers clients the chance to learn about the geological, natural and cultural history of the area from guides who have been trained in guest services, safety and first aid, as well as the history, culture, flora and fauna of the area.

The new 4,500-square-foot Adventure Center is located beneath the Kapalua Golf Academy, luring clients before and after their activities with its retail shop, cafe dining, coffee bar, adventure concierges and multimedia informational displays.

While not the first zipline course in Hawaii, the multifaceted Kapalua version stands apart, said Quinn.

“There is only one other zipline operator on Maui and no other challenge course on this island,” he said. “Our ziplines run side-by-side throughout the course, providing an experience at a competitive price with at least double the adventure.”

Kapalua Adventures has been designed to impact the natural environment as little as possible. Clients embarking on an excursion are transported from the Adventure Center to the Mountain Outpost in biodiesel vehicles. Ziplines allow guests to view plant and bird life without disrupting the ecosystem, and guides make sure that guests remain on foot paths. Environmentally conscious clients can rest assured that their fun will also do good. Kapalua Resort has pledged 10 percent of the profits generated by the Adventure Center to the Puu Kukui Watershed Preserve. The preserve’s delicate ecosystem harbors several of the world’s rarest plants and insects.

According to Quinn, the attraction is helping Kapalua set a new standard for Hawaii resort destinations by incorporating full-service activities and adventures that appeal to families.

“In the long run, watch for Kapalua Adventures to raise the bar even higher with over 100 miles of hiking, mountain biking and equestrian trails, as well as outrigger paddling and sailing canoe programs,” he said. “All of this rolls up into guest satisfaction, which shines back to the agent’s recommendations.

“The new level and higher standard of engineering and programming for our products will require everyone in this young industry to re-evaluate their services,” Quinn said.

After a thrilling day of zipping, climbing, snorkeling, scuba diving and golfing, clients can choose from an impressive selection of fine dining options in the destination. For all of those reasons, it’s easy to see why Quinn describes Kapalua Resort as “the straight arrow in any travel agent’s quill that will enable them to hit the target for their clients on the first call.”


Kapalua Adventure Center and Mountain Outpost

Challenge Course: $50 per person. Two-hour zipline course: $99 per person. Four-hour zipline and challenge course tour: $159. Commission: Varies. Call for details.

A popular Kapalua Resort accommodation is offering an incentive to travel and wholesale agents who book clients into one of its newly designed suites.

Through Dec. 31, the Ritz-Carlton Kapalua is giving agents a free night in a suite for every five cumulative suite room nights booked.

Slated at press time for a January reopening, the resort recently went through a $130 million renovation affecting accommodations, restaurants, the spa and Ritz Kids program.