New Course Opening in Puerto Rico

The new Golf Links at Royal Isabela in Puerto Rico will be having a soft opening this summer. The course is being built on an Atlantic Coast island resort on the northwest edge of Puerto Rico.

Designed by golf architect David W. Pfaff, in collaboration with brothers Stanley and Charlie Pasarell - the founders of Royal Isabela, the course occupies plateaus and will hug adjoining cliffs. Also involved are vertical sod-face bunkers, giving the seaside layout Scottish flair in a tropical setting.

"Tropical Scotland," Stanley Pasarell calls it. "If the Open ever leaves the British Isles, this could be a venue."

Also marking the course will be native grasses, lakes and ponds, and natural sand dunes. Trade winds will take an active role in how to play it. More than 20,000 native trees and indigenous, ornamental plants have been grown in on-site nurseries from seeds and cuttings gathered on the property, while the turfgrass was also grown on the property.

"A legacy has been created here - one of appreciation for the environment and of respect for its history," Stanley Pasarell said. "This is what makes the Royal Isabela experience truly one-of-a-kind."

Notable holes will be the island green at the par-3 ninth and the cliff-top, double-green used for Nos. 12 and No. 14. The sixth hole will feature two separate fairways and greens; which part of the landing area used off the tee will create a par-4 or a par-5.

Royal Isabela will have six sets of tees, stretching the layout to a maximum of 7,667 yards as a par 73, and 7,538 yards as a par 72 (depending on how No. 6 is played).

The greens at Royal Isabela are Mini Verde (Ultra Dwarf Bermuda), while the fairways are 419 Bermuda, with rough made up of Zoysia, native Bermuda, Pangola, Estrella, Guinea, Coqui and other local grasses. Guests may use solar carts, but caddies will be required.

Golf Links at Royal Isabela is 90 minutes from San Juan International Airport and 20 minutes from Aguadilla International Airport. The property stretches along 426 oceanfront acres; its cliffs range in elevation from 150 to 350 feet above sea level.

Membership in the club is by invitation-only, but the course will be available to resort guests, with the lodge, clubhouse, signature restaurant (La Casa) and guest village set to open this summer.

For additional information, visit at or call Mariel Prieto, Marketing Director, at 939/940-4150.