October 4th is Golf Day! To celebrate, we are highlighting some of the great golf courses to be found in Puerto Rico. As the home to the official PGA Puerto Rico Open in April, and many master-designed golf courses and excellent golf professionals, if you are an avid golfer, then a trip to Puerto Rico is a must on your Golf Bucket List. Here are some of our favorite courses to golf Puerto Rico:
Thanks to GolfNow.com for the great descriptions….
Dorado Beach – Dorado
East Course: The highlight of the Dorado Beach East Course is its renowned 4th hole. The 4th hole was ranked by Jack Nicklaus as one of the top ten golf holes in the world and promises an unforgettable scene at this Caribbean golf resort. At 525 yards from the championship tee (500 for non-pros), it’s a double dogleg that affords the strong player a reachable green in two shots – if he or she can cross two ponds to get there. Amateurs may take the more cautious path of playing around the lake in a “Z” pattern and pitching to the green with their third shot. A $2 million dollar upgrade of the East Course was completed in 1999. Fairways and greens were contoured back to their original designs and the bunkers rebuilt; drainage and irrigation systems and new cart paths were installed. Major landscaping of the course added exotic flowering trees and plants to its already plentiful palms and fruit trees.
Plantation Pineapple Course: The Plantation Pineapple Course was designed to be the more friendly course for golfers at this Caribbean golf resort. The course has fewer forced carries, the bunkers are not as deep and the greens are slightly larger. The back nine of The Plantation Pineapple Course consists of four holes with an ocean view, followed by a tough five-hole stretch culminating with a fantastic par four, 18th hole, that finishes up on a green that is just below the clubhouse terrace. We promise that you’ll enjoy the majestic beauty on one of Puerto Rico’s finest golf courses.
Plantation Sugarcane Course: The Dorado Beach Plantation Sugarcane Course is the more challenging of the two Plantation courses at this Caribbean golf resort, although it boasts larger fairways and greens. The course features more forced carries and deeper bunkers that can penalize you for an errant shot. The back nine is surrounded by newly created rivers and lakes and offers a much different look, never seen at the old Cerromar and Dorado Courses, making this a hidden gem amongst Puerto Rico golf courses. Players have an opportunity for birdies early in the round, but par is a great score on most every hole on the back nine. The new 50,000 square foot, $5 million clubhouse awaits golfers after their round. Whether it be for a cold beverage with your foursome, a magnificent meal cooked to order, or simply to relax on our deck that provides great views of the golf course.
Rio Mar Resort – Rio Grande
River Course: Greg Norman’s first Caribbean design rolls 6,945 yards along the Mameyes River, framed by vistas of mountains and sea. Norman preserved native foliage and let the natural terrain determine placement of all holes. Ideal for players of all skill levels, the design features wide fairways, open greens, shallow bunkers and light rough. Typical of Norman’s courses, all 18 holes can rate the title of “signature.”
Ocean Course: Atlantic panoramas, ocean breezes and iguanas play along the entire 6,782 yards of Tom and George Fazio’s Ocean Course. One of Puerto Rico’s most popular courses, its classic layout features four sets of tees, numerous bunkers and elevated greens. The signature 16th hole, an oceanside par 3, 238 yards, always rates among the Caribbean’s best.
Costa Caribe Golf & Country Club – Ponce
Designed by Bruce A. Besse, Jr., this spectacular 27-hole championship golf course is nestled between the sparkling Caribbean Sea and majestic Central Mountains. The unique 27-hole layout features several oceanfront holes offering breathtaking Caribbean views, 14 beautiful man-made lakes, Puerto Rico’s first island green and manicured course conditions year-round. And, with four strategically placed sets of tees, few forced carries and yardages ranging from 5,201 to 6,937, the course provides a true test for the skilled golfer while providing a fun and fair layout recreational golfers are sure to enjoy.
Be on the lookout for both beauty and challenge at Costa Caribe’s signature 12th hole, featuring Puerto Rico’s first island green. At this challenging par 3, players are faced with one of the course’s few forced carries to an island green of generous proportions. Be warned, your tee shot here will likely face the prevailing Caribbean breeze, so be sure and take an extra club.
Bahia Beach Resort – Rio Grande
“Bahia Beach will be a haven of golf that will challenge but also delight your soul and spirit.” Robert Trent Jones Jr., Bahia Beach golf course architect.
The course was created around a network of saltwater lagoons, which Jones took full advantage of in his design. Fifteen of the 18 holes border some form of water, as the course takes a means bering route around the lagoons before emerging onto the Atlantic coast for the final three holes.”
Bahía Beach Golf Course is a scenic 6,979-yard layout overlooking the Atlantic Ocean, 80 acres of saltwater lagoons and the mountainous El Yunque National Rainforest.
Experience the game in a course designed with a commitment to preserve the natural integrity, managed by Troon Golf, offering the highest standards of service and play for the most demanding players.
Trump International Golf Club – Coco Beach – Rio Grande
Developed by Empresas Diaz, Trump International’s 36-hole championship course boasts four highly unique nines in a setting of unparalleled tropical grandeur. Home of the Puerto Rico Open, an official PGA Tour event, the courses are challenging to all levels and feature exquisite views of the water at every turn
The Lakes Course : Designed around eight manmade lakes, The Lakes are especially primed for your putter.
The Ocean Course : Nine holes by the ocean, with Atlantic breezes adding to the challenge.
The Mountain Course : One of the most picturesque courses, the Mountain takes advantage of its rainforest setting.
The Palms Course : This course, nestled among a forest of palm trees, provides a change of scene from any other course on the island.
El Conquistador Golf Courses – Fajardo
Test your game at the Arthur Hills Golf Course at El Conquistador Resort& Waldorf Astoria Spa. Our 72-par course is ideal – challenging and player-friendly. Stroll the daunting hills and bunkers tamed by cleverly planned lateral movements and broad openings. View the elevation changes of more than 200 vertical feet – rare among typically flat Caribbean golf resorts. And take in the greens, dotted with palm trees, lush island flora, and fauna. Drive the 18th hole, where splashing fountains lead to a waterfall over which the last unforgettable shot of the game is made. Enjoy dramatic views of the majestic El Yunque Rain Forest and the stunning Atlantic Ocean
Palmas del Mar – Humacao
A fine resort tucked away along the east coast in the town of Humacao, Palmas del Mar has two championship 18-hole golf courses:
Flamboyán Course: Designed by architect Reese Jones and has been rated among the five best places to play in the Caribbean by Barron Magazine.
Palm Course : Designed by golfing great Gary Player. Its water hazards, bunkers and rolling greens offer a challenge for players at any level.
Royal Isabela – Isabela
Brothers Stanley and Charlie Pasarell envisioned and designed the course with great passion for the land and the game. Through a collaboration with architect David W. Pfaff, they brought their vision to breathtaking reality. Created on site, not on paper, the design evolved from the land itself. Their hands-on and minimal-impact approach pays tribute to the Golf Links’ majestic partner: nature.
The landscape’s native grasses, natural sand dunes and deep canyons are integral to the layout, while sod-faced bunkers add a Scottish flair to this island gem. These elements, along with trade winds that are your friend one moment and your foe the next, shape the course’s character and captivate the golf purist. Each hole provides a unique test. In fact, Royal Isabela is not limited to one signature moment. Mother Nature has provided them continuously from start to finish. A legacy has been created here, one of appreciation for the environment and of respect for its history.