The axiom that golf is a global game has never been more true. A burgeoning new world order of golf resort destinations have ascended to the lofty ranks of “must play.” Here are the Top Five:Mission Hills Golf Club
Is bigger better? With Mission Hills, definitely. It offers 12 exceptional courses designed by the giants of the genre like Jack Nicklaus and Greg Norman. Even better, the resort accommodations and amenities are as superb as the golf. www.missionhillsgroup.com Celtic Manor Resort – Newport, Wales
Set in the verdant countryside of Wales is the majestic Twenty Ten course at Celtic Manor Resort – host of golf’s 2010 Ryder Cup and premier luxury retreat less than two hours outside London. This is lyrical land for golf with grand trees standing sentinel alongside tranquil lakes. Five-star Celtic Manor boasts two other championships courses as well. www.celtic-manor.comPristine Bay – Roatan, Honduras
Located on the lush, tropical island of Roatan, 35 miles off the coast of Honduras, Pristine Bay Resort sits adjacent to the Caribbean Sea. Designed by Pete Dye, The Black Pearl is an 18-hole, resort layout that starts at the ocean’s doorstep, rises into the island’s rolling foothills and then takes golfers on a wild ride back to the seaside clubhouse. www.pristinebayresort.com Soma Bay – Hurghada, Egypt
The Cascades Course at Soma Bay on the Red Sea is the finest in the Middle East. Designed by Gary Player, several of the holes verge on the spectacular as they play hard along the mesmerizing azure water. The resort property and hotel are as grand and opulent as one would expect in the land of pharaohs. www.somabay.com Kauri CliffsCape Kidnappers New Zealand
Residing regally in Northeast New Zealand is Kauri Cliffs. Whether you’re staying at the exquisite Main Lodge set on 6,000 acres near Matauri Bay or playing golf on the acclaimed layout, the ocean views are splendid. Equally impressive is Cape Kidnappers overlooking Hawke Bay on the North Island’s southeastern shore. The Tom Doak design is a masterpiece. Get to New Zealand as quick as you’re able. It’s too good to pass up in a golfing lifetime.