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Dominican Hotels gain world recognition

-The Iberostar Grand Bavaro from Punta Cana was included in the list of the top 10 design hotels in the world, the Santo Domingo won the highest score in the implementation of quality standards in food handling and the Dominican Republic.

-The Occidental Embajador Hotel won the highest score in the implementation of quality standards of food handling in the Dominican Republic and the Americas.

Casa de Campo won the award for the third year "Resort Golf Leader of the Caribbean" at the World Travel Awards, the boutique Casa Colonial in Puerto Plata, was included in the finalists of the awards Johansen 2011, Conde Nast Travele.

-Gran Ventana Victoria Hotel was awarded the "Award of Excellence 2010" by Thomas Cook, was nominated for World Travel Awards 2011.

-Punta Cana Resort & Club, was chosen as the leader of the Caribbean Green Hotel, the Catalonia Bavaro boutique as "Caribbean's Leading Boutique Resort", the Barcelo Bavaro Beach Resort Casino and Resort Leader of the Caribbean, the Punta Cana Club Med for Best Family Resorts in the Caribbean, and Punta Cana Sivory as Leader in Caribbean Resort.

-The website chose Hostal Nicolas de Ovando among the best Latin American historoc place and Punta Cana Zoetry Aqua was chosen as second on the list of the best to relax in the Caribbean and Mexico Travel Choice award in 2011. more

Tortuga Bay Hotel among the best in the world

Tortuga Bay Boutique Hotel located in the Punta Cana Resort & Club has been awarded the Traveller's Choice Award 2012, as one of the three best in the world in the Caribbean, as certified hotels.

Tortuga Bay was first preference of the Dominican Republic, ranks number three among the twenty best hotels in the Caribbean, according to assessments of millions of travelers that reflect their experiences on TripAdvisor, the largest travel websites worldwide, with 50 million unique visitors per month and 20 million registered users.

Tortuga Bay is a luxury boutique hotel with 15 luxurious villas (50 rooms) were built taking into account the use of wood and cane, with a design that integrates the landscape. This hotel also has golf courses to the sea, designed by Tom Fazio and PB Dye and Six Sense Spa. more


Puerto Plata Hotels are full during this month

The president of the Association of Hotels, Condominiums and Commercial Establishments of Playa Dorada, Roberto Casoni, said that in recent weeks, hotel occupancy has been a marked increase, from 34 percent last December to 71.3 percent in so far this month.

Casoni said that to achieve this increase has been key to work together hoteliers have developed the North and the Ministry of Tourism, to capture new market niches, "which allow us to have a greater flow of tourists to our hotels" .

Casoni said that the hotels are located in the strip from Cabarete to Luperon are prepared with your comfort and trained personnel to offer the best quality services to foreign visitors.

The hotels in Playa Dorada, Marapicá, Cofresi and Maimon recorded excellent occupations, as revealed by Casoni, indicating that the promotions have been made abroad, "begin to bear fruit for the tourism that comes to Puerto Plata."

Lifestyle Holidays Vacation Hotel Resort, located on Cofresi, maintains the primacy of the occupations of the hotels in this province, as recorded by 100 percent.

Casoni said that this facility marks an overbought above 20 points.

In this hotel followed Oasis Marien, Iberostar Costa Dorada, Puerto Plata Barcelo, Gran Ventana, Blue Bay Villas Doradas, RIU, Puerto Plata Allegro, Lifestyle Tropical, Great Paradise, Puerto Plata Village and Casa Marina, with an occupancy of between 80 to 90 percent.

Casoni said that the arrival of Canadian visitors has increased in recent weeks in this location, then the agreement between the hotel on the north coast about 250 tour operators in this country, to promote Puerto Plata for the arrival of the season high. more

Devotees travel to Higuey to celebrate La Altagracia´s Day

For dominicans it is a popular religious belief to ask the Virgin of La Altagracia for the healing of illness, bad love, emotional distress or "pain pockets", which is expressed in the inability of thousands of dominicans can not even meet their basic needs.

Maybe that's why, yesterday, from early morning, hundreds of people began to pack the courtyard of the sprawling complex where stands the majestic Basilica of Our Lady of La Altagracia, patron saint of Higuey, place of pilgrimage and economic foothold for dozens of vendors of food, water, candy, rum and beer, women and even nightlife.

Outside, right near the main entrance to the sanctuary, there are other beggars. They have nothing that makes it impossible to walk, talk, listen or look perfectly.

They are in good working condition. But they do not, because they know very well that the Day of La Altagracia Province held in a predominantly tourist, then let them pay greater dividends than any informal employment.

This is so because the protective mother of Dominicans have the same spiritual value to hundreds of tourists coming to Higuey from Europe, USA and other contours of the world, to ask things or thank you for having given others.

This group of people asking the same organization who works honestly, is made up of Haitians and Dominicans, with the first group that predominates in this activity and seen as normal in these celebrations.

Our Lady of Altagracia has been capped twice by the highest authorities of the Catholic Church, Pope Pius XI and John Paul II.

Her first coronation was the August 15, 1922, when Pope Pius XI was in the country, and from the Bastion February 27, today Puerta del Conde, La Altagracia was canonically crowned under the title of Our Lady of La Altagracia .

During the first visit of Pope John Paul II on January 25, 1979, this blessed Shrine of La Altagracia, now Basilica of Our Lady of La Altagracia and October 12, 1992, on his second visit to the Dominican Republic, the Pope John Paul II personally crowned the image of La Altagracia with a silver-gilt crown.

Historians have multiple versions of the history and origin of La Altagracia in the country, including his image, which is believed to be the canvas of the painting of La Altagracia is an earlier work, and could be performed at the Spanish Riding School art, and that experts say was painted in the late fifteenth or early sixteenth century, but no document to prove it. (Source) more


Dominican Republic exceeded target country for air passengers

During 2011 the Dominican Republic exceeded expectations in terms of tourist arrivals by air, presenting a growth above 5%, the Tourism Minister Francisco Javier Garcia in the opening of the International Tourism Fair Fitur 2012, held in Madrid, Spain.

According to the official estimated, it was expected that by 2011 the growth reached 4%, however the rebound was presented in December to be placed above 5% throughout the year.

"In December we conclude with an extraordinary growth above 8% and in general, grew 5.17% in 2011 compared to 2010," said García.

Mr. García said that the year just ended was a milestone in the history of Dominican tourism when establishing new brand of visitor arrivals that exceeded four million 300 thousand visitors a year.

"In 2011 it received the largest number of tourists had been received for one year with the arrival of 4.306 million tourists, which marks a milestone in the history of Dominican tourism," said the official.

He stressed that Russia played a leading role in the growth of 2011 from being an emerging market with an established, at a time when some European markets are affected by the global crisis, keeping the U.S. as the largest market for dominican tourism.

"The Russian market has become an established market with a growth of 59% in 2011 and peaked at over Italy, but the latter ceased to grow, to fifth place behind France, Germany, Spain and England "said the Minister. more

Perello Cultural Center welcomes visiting members Club Classic and Vintage Car RD

Antique Car Club Classic and the Dominican Republic (CAACRD) started 2012 calendar of events visit the Cultural Center Perelló of Bani, where they were displayed in front esplanade 20 cars of the era of the 1930 car until 1970.

The visitors received a tour of the Cultural Centre Perello, visited the painting exhibition areas and Linked from the collection of artistic works of Banco Popular Dominicano, the photo exhibit of Wilfredo Garcia,collection from Centro Leon in Santiago.

Club members noted works of famous dominican painters such as Paul Giudicelli, Jaime Colson, Celeste Woss y Gil, Gilberto Hernandez Ortega, Yoryi Morel, Eligio Pichardo, Darío Suero, Ramón Oviedo, Guillo Perez, Antonio Prats Ventós, Ada Balcácer, Fernando Perez Defilló, Plutarco Andujar, Elsa Nuñez and Luichy Martinez among others.

The old cars were also parked for several hours, in the central park Marcos A. Cabral, opposite the city hall hero's Maximo Gomez.

Residents of the town of Maximo Gomez (Bani), saw cars beginning of last century such as a Ford type 1930, and a great representation of the vehicles from the 50s, 60s and 70s, with a preponderance of the great was the famous American auto line Ford, Chevrolet, GM, with a variety of models such as Mustang, Camaro, Impala, Nova and others. more


Fishing Lodge Cap Cana

Inside the Fishing Lodge located in Cap Cana, guests can enjoy a high level of service, a private beach - a nice two-minute boat ride - two themed restaurants, three bars, four swimming pools, a stone chapel wedding Dominican style, a art fitness and fashion.

It also has the most prestigious golf course in the Caribbean and Mexico, designed by Jack Nicklaus in the exclusive Punta Espada Golf Club., Children's activities and boat rentals.

There are also spacious and luxurious space for meetings and weddings, including a waterfront amphitheater. more

Cofresí Beach

Cofresi Beach is located near Puerto Plata and was named by that name by a pirate of Puerto Rico, the Captain Roberto Cofresi.

Cofresi Beach is Ocean World & Water Park which houses the largest water park in the world of dolphins.

Each week, thousands of domestic and foreign tourists enjoy the spectacle of dolphins and other attractions of this beach.

Cofresi Beach is distinguished by its soft golden sand, clear water, with trees along the line, some cabins, parasols, with winds in an area only located in the Atlantic.

Beach is ideal for a good rest. more

Cofresí Palm Beach Resort

Palm Beach & Spa Cofresi Resort is the newest jewel in the crown of Lifestyle Holidays Vacation Club.

Nestled along Cofresi Beach, the property offers a spectacular view of the sparkling Caribbean Sea.

The resort provides a high level of service and luxurious amenities for the enjoyment of families and couples looking for the perfect destination for a vacation getaway.

With 468 well appointed rooms ranging from suites for adults only to family standard rooms located between the beach and a spectacular Ideal for couples or the resort located in a quiet, idyllic spot is a worthy representative of the name Lifestyle.

The property was developed considering the space and comfort, making Cofresi Palm in a relaxing, enjoyable and highly satisfactory place to all guests and their families.

The rooms
have air conditioning, cable television, telephones and ceiling fans, and the decor features a unique design with dark wood furnishings.

The shaded patios and balconies in some units provide a quiet place to gather with friends and family.

With services and amenities that are standard on property Lifestyle, Cofresi Palm offers a luxurious lodging experience unique. more

Playa Bonita Beach Residences

Bay, recognized as one of the most beautiful bays in the world, has had the privilege of being one of the first Caribbean to obtain this recognition.

Highlighting its natural beauty, the bay also serves as a refuge for whales migrate each year of the globe north to the warm Caribbean waters.

It is located in the North coast of the peninsula, specifically in the area of Playa Bonita and west of the town Las Terrenas, where the project is Playa Bonita Beach Residences located just 150 km from the central polygon of the city of Santo Domingo, the same distance from Santo Domingo to Santiago.

Playa Bonita Beach Residences is different from the other projects in the area because it is a gated residential community with services operated and privately and to establish the first residential community ecology of the northern coast of the province of Samaná.

The front of the beach has 9 buildings with 88 apartments overlooking the sea, including 36 penthouse with upper terraces and Jacuzzi, designed by Christopher Angel Valdez & Giudicelli. The apartments on the beach and contemplate large panoramic balconies range from 120 m2 to 165 m2. more

Humpback whales come to Samana

Beginning this Sunday, January 15, the Marine Mammal Sanctuary of the Silver Banks and Christmas will be the setting for thousands of domestic and foreign tourists enjoy one of the most beautiful natural spectacles, the mating of hundreds of humpback whales each year return to the warm waters of our Atlantic coast to mate and bear their young.

In order to respect the whales occupy habitat and ensure compliance with the regulations established for observation, signed a Memorandum of Understanding between the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources, the Ministry of Tourism, the Navy , the City of Samana, the Center for Conservation and Eco Samaná Bay and its Environs (CEBS), Atem, FUNDEMAS and Boat Owners Association of the Bay of Samana.

The Navy ships will monitor only with permission and registered with the Ministry of Environment to carry out the mobilization of visitors to the activity of whale watching, and do not emit smoke, unnecessary engine noise and horn beeps.

The Boat Owners Association of the area among its captains promote compliance with the whale watching regulations adopted by all involved in the system of co management of the activity.

The whale watching season boosts the economy of the entire area during the months of January, February and March, as more than 30 000 foreign tourists and Dominicans make the trip to see a sight to behold. more

Sailing Tournament at Cabarete

from the Netherlands, Japan, Germany, Puerto Rico, Bermuda, USA, Spain, Curacao, Canada, Italy, Argentina and the Dominican Republic today are participating in the X Laser Sailing Championship Caribbean, which will stage beach Cabarete, Puerto Plata.

The event is run by the Dominican Sailing Federation, headed by Luis José Cabra.

The main race official will be David Kerr from Puerto Rico, and the main jury will be Chris Gowers, from England.

The favorite for winning this event is Julio Alsogaray, from Argentina, who recently won gold at the Pan American Games and is ranked fourth in the world.

Dominican sailors are optimistic for their participation in the event that has created great expectations. more


Memorial Museum of the Dominican Resistance

The Memorial Museum of the Dominican Resistance was created by Decree No.287-07 and is located on the 210 Arzobispo de Nouel street in the Colonial Zone of Santo Domingo.

Its mission is collecting, organizing, cataloging, preservation, research, dissemination and exhibition of goods, tangible and intangible heritage of the nation, for the struggles of several generations of Dominicans during the dictatorship of Rafael L. Trujillo, its antecedents and its consequences.

The Memorial Museum of Dominican Resistance is aimed at students, teachers, members of the Police and Armed Forces and the general public.

It is a
site to commemorate the fallen in the struggle for democracy, but more than anything is an educational institution that is dedicated to raising awareness among new generations about the value of life and the fundamental human right to freedom, the right act and express their ideas without fear of losing his family, his dignity or life.

This museum uses the most modern audio-visual resources, complemented by pieces from the heroes and survivors of these deeds libertarian as well as testimony, recordings, photographs and videos of the Fallen, environments, dioramas and models depicting the torture prisons and certain episodes history.

This dominican museum
includes service areas such as bathrooms, library and cafeteria, an auditorium and a documentation center.

It also includes restoration and extension Jail site 9, as an integral part thereof. more


Skiing, Snowboarding, and Fantastic Ski Resorts – California has it all

If you are looking to get away from the Dominican Republic, and take a different kind of vacation; travel to California and take a snowy retreat on a mountain.

Ski resorts in California are abundant, diverse, and always conveniently located.

In northern California, the Lake Tahoe area is well known for being home to posh snowfall, good roads, and some of the largest ski resorts in the United States. Here is the short list of some of the best ski resorts in the state of California.

Located in the Lake Tahoe region of Northern California, Squaw Valley is the second largest ski area at Lake Tahoe.

Squaw Valley is the first American ski resort to have a funitel ski lift along with 33 chairlifts to accommodate over half a million skiers each year.

The Squaw Valley Ski resorts is spread over 4,000 acres and across six mountain peaks topping at a height of 9,050 feet.

Skiing and snowboarding areas cover over 4,000 acres just 35 miles from South Lake Tahoe. Located just seven miles from Alpine Meadows, skiers can enjoy snowboarding, night skiing, tubing, cross country, and snowshoe trails. Private and group lessons are available plus ski and snowboard rentals.

Alpine Meadows

Located five miles west of Tahoe City and nearby Squaw Valley on the western side of North Lake Tahoe, Alpine Meadows, with a top elevation of 8,637 feet, is one of Lake Tahoe’s most popular of the ‘Big Six’ ski resorts.

Alpine Meadows offers skiers and snowboarders the convenience of 11 chairlifts and two surface lifts that cover more than 2,400 acres of ski terrain.

Alpine Meadows has three popular terrain parks, the Dance Floor with six table top jumps, Sneaky Weasel with two table tops and one hip jump, and Roo Ridge with five table top jumps at 10 to 15 feet.

Tiegel Park is the perfect terrain park for kids to learn while doing. The Tiegel Terrain Park features 8, 16, and 20 foot Flat Rails, 3 rollers, and special kid’s group lessons. Season passes and group rates are available.

Kirkwood Mountain Resort

One of the most amazing facts about Kirkwood Mountain Resort is that it has a history of receiving over 800 inches of snow during a single ski season.

The average snow fall for the area is just less than 500 inches.

Kirkwood Mountain Resort is nearly 33 miles south of South Lake Tahoe on the California side. Aside from the spectacular 2.5 mile long ski run, Kirkwood offers a variety of Terrain Parks for skiing and snowboarding that include Burton Adventure Land for beginners, Burton Progression Park for intermediate skiers, K2 Stomping Grounds for intermediate to advanced skiers, and the Border X Course for skiers and boarders with a passion for speed.

Lessons for kids, beginners, and adults are available through the Tahoe Learning Center with the purchase of the Learning Pass.

Bear Valley:

Bear Valley Ski area is located southwest of Lake Tahoe nearly a three hour drive from Sacramento, the capital city of California.

Bear Valley is famous for its 35 Cross Country and Snowshoe Trail system that covers 3,000 acres of snowy terrain which receives nearly 360 inches of snow a season.

The top elevation at Bear Valley is a breathtaking 8,500 feet with 1,280 acres suitable for skiing and with handy chairlifts.

Bear Valley offer skiing and snowboarding terrains suitable for any level from beginners to advanced skiers and boarders.

The Terrain Parks at Bear Valley offer a combination of boxes, rails, and jumps for skiers and snowboarders with beginner to advanced skills. Instructors are available to teach and give helpful tips.

Take a break from skiing or snowboarding at the Hungry Bear Food Court & Bakery, the Cub Café Espresso Bar, or JB’s Outdoor Barbecue. ATM conveniently located at the food court.

Megan Gates is an active blogger who provides written work to the blogosphere pertaining to NY Real Estate Listings, Hamptons Condos, home improvement and the latest architecture, design, fashion and travel. Follow her on twitter @MEGatesDesign. more