ISABELA, Puerto Rico -- Since 2008, no Caribbean island has invested more time, effort and money into its golf scene than Puerto Rico.
The Puerto Rico Open -- the Caribbean's only PGA Tour event, held annually since 2008 at the 36-hole Trump International Golf Club -- serves as the TV showcase for the island's 21 golf courses currently open.
Major renovations on the East Course at Dorado Beach Resort & Club (in 2011) and the Bahia Beach Resort & Golf Club (in 2008) -- coupled with two five-star resorts built on site, the Dorado Beach, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve, and St. Regis Bahia Beach Resort, respectively -- have elevated both destinations in stature. Dorado's iconic East Course recently hosted the Golf Channel's "Big Break NFL" series.
The 2010 opening of Royal Isabela, a wild links course along the high cliffs of the northwest coast, added another must-see attraction. The Wyndham Grand Rio Mar Beach Resort & Spa, home to the Rio Mar Country Club's River Course and Ocean Course, is in the midst of a $500 million spending spree to upgrade its infrastructure.
Guests at the El Conquistador Resort, a Waldorf Astoria resort clutching oceanfront cliffs on the northeast side of the island, can explore 23 bars and restaurants, a hilly Arthur Hills design, a cool water park and take a ferry to a private beach on Palomino Island. Now that's a golf vacation.