December Brings Changes To New Makena Resort
By Sonia Isotov
At newly-named Makena Beach & Golf Resort, General Manager and Landmark Hotels Group Senior VP, Shawn Sweeney recently announced two key appointments and opened one new restaurant.
At the Makena Tennis Club, Sweeney appointed Frank Salvador as the new Director of Tennis. Salvador will take over the tennis program, including coordination and instruction of all tennis-related club activities and events, as well as overseeing the overall maintenance of the clubs facilities which include six plexipave courts and a pro shop. Salvador comes from Hyatt Regency Resort & Spa on Maui where he was the Tennis Program Director for 10 years.
Sweeney also appointed a new Food & Beverage leadership team comprised of Marc McDowell, Executive Chef and Bret Scott Pafford Jr. as the resort’s new Director of Food and Beverage.
Marc McDowell has previously held senior culinary positions at the Grand Wailea Resort and Ritz-Carlton Kapalua, most recently as Executive Sous Chef at the Five Diamond Ritz Carlton. In his spare time, he is a master gardener and looks to bring creativity and innovation to Makena’s Food & Beverage Program with an Aquaponic system which provides hydroponically grown vegetables and fresh fish.
With a grand opening on December 10, the resort launched its new restaurant named Raku Japanese Restaurant. Set to replace the former Hakone Restaurant, Raku will feature a “Reinvented Japanese Experience” featuring an authentic Japanese Menu and an ambiance with Maui flair.
Under the direction of Executive Chef Marc McDowell, he says, “We wish to bring back the food that the restaurant was known for, which is good authentic Japanese cuisine but presented in a new way; it is a reinvented Japanese dining experience that we hope will bring people back for more.”
Raku will feature talents from longtime Sushi Chef Ivan Bersamin preparing classic sushi favorites, and also announces the return of Chef Tom Kamijo, who collaborated with Chef McDowell on Raku’s menu.
Many Maui residents will remember Chef Tom as the Chef De Cuisine of the Hakone Restaurant back when the Makena property was the Maui Prince Hotel.