The US$100 million Royal Isabela golf community in Puerto Rico has officially opened.
Local politicians and tourism leaders joined resort founders Stanley and Charlie Pasarell at the ribbon cutting ceremony. The Pasarell brothers discovered golf after retiring from professional tennis, and decided to develop a course and community on their native island.
It took the brothers ten years to find the 426 oceanfront acres, atop cliffs rising 150-350 feet above the sea, to secure permits and build the resort. Architect David Pfaff designed the course; the community also includes a clubhouse, 20 luxury casitas, restaurant and tennis courts. There are also 28 home sites and space for up to 50 fairway villas on the property.
The golf course opened last year; now the entire property is complete, the Pasarells have established the El Pastillo Conservation Trust to protect and nurture their corner of the island. Among the trust's responsibilities are an on-property nursery for trees, flowers, and golf turf grass, and an organic farm that gives work to homeless men with disabilities.