February 15, 2005
  • Bill Gates vacations in Casa de Campo
  • Samana: The Montecarlo of Latin America
  • Preparing a Samana master plan
  • Vanessa Williams visits
Bill Gates vacations in Casa de Campo
Microsoft’s chairman Bill Gates and his wife Melinda were in La Romana since Friday vacationing at the home of Venezuelan Gustavo Cisneros. News reports say that the Gates ate at Altos de Chavon’s Sombrero and Giacosa restaurants. President Leonel Fernandez visited with them on Sunday, 13 February.
Samana: The Montecarlo of Latin America
President Leonel Fernandez visited the northeastern cities of Nagua and Samana last week as part of a nationwide tour to meet with community leaders and the people. In Nagua he committed to the construction of the aqueduct for Rio San Juan, which will also serve the Cabrera and Playa Grande area, a beach and golf development stretch. In Samana, he told the community that gathered for the event that the province has the potential to become the “Montecarlo of Latin America”.
He promised to complete the port and marina structure promised in his past administration. President Fernandez also promised that during his government the El Catey international airport and Santo Domingo-Samana highway would be completed. The President also committed to invest millions in the construction of aqueducts and schools.
Preparing a Samana master plan
The Ministry of Tourism has put on hold all new constructions in the area until the completion of a master plan being drafted by a French architect. The plan will be presented on 17 February in Samana.
Tourism Minister Felix Jimenez announced over the weekend that the Dominican government would invest RD$444 million in the construction of a sewage and residual waters treatment plants, garbage deposit for the communities of Las Terrenas and Las Galeras. Works are expected to start in July and be finished by summer 2007.
Jimenez said that private sector is investing US$21 million in the improvements at the Cayacoa city hotel (June 2005) and the Cayo Levantado hotel (December 2005), a concession made to Altabella hotels. He also announced that the first cruise ships will arrive to the area in December. He announced the presentation of the master plan drafted by French architect with experience in marinas on 17 February in Samana.
Vanessa Williams visits
Vanessa Williams, the first black Miss America turned talented singer/actress, visited the DR on Friday staying at the La Romana Casa de Campo resort. She was accompanied by her four-year old daughter. She came to attend the Dorman-Kipmes wedding, as reported in the Listin Diario. Williams has received two NAACP Image Awards and nine Grammy Award nominations. She won an Academy Award and a Golden Globe for the single "Colors of the Wind" on the soundtrack to Pocahontas. She has had roles in several movies, including Soul Food and Eraser. She was chosen to sing the national anthem at Super Bowl XXX. She is currently married to NBA player, Rick Fox, and has four children, Melanie, Jillian, Devin, and Sasha Gabriella.

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