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March 14, 2006
  • Mexican investment in DR tourism
  • More docks at Casa de Campo Marina
  • Palma Real Shopping Center
  • Travel & Leisure on DR
Mexican investment in DR tourism
Mexican investors from the Cancun and Riviera Maya area continue to announce major investments in tourism ventures along the Dominican Republic's eastern coast. Earlier this year, Xcaret investors expressed a strong interest in building a theme park. Now, Palace Resorts investors held the ground-breaking ceremony for the construction of their first DR resort, a Moon Palace. President Fernandez was there for the formal start of works. The 1,700-room luxury all-inclusive hotel is due to open a first phase in summer 2007, with completion scheduled for December 2007.
The resort will offer 1,541 suites, including 190 presidential suites, 192 honeymoon suites and four villas. A convention center will also be on the premises. The Dominican firm, Constructora Bisono won the contract for the construction.
Palace Resorts operates six luxury all-inclusive resorts in Cancun and the Riviera Maya in Mexico, including the Moon Palace Golf Resort in Cancun that opened in 2003 and features the first Jack Nicklaus Signature Golf Course in the area.
More docks at Casa de Campo Marina
President Leonel Fernandez was in La Romana on Wednesday, 8 March for the formal opening of the second phase of the Casa de Campo Marina.
The marina expansion area has 167 berths for yachts from 50 to 250 feet, and eight docks for sailboats and three for large catamarans.
The marina features a new 1,200-meter breakwate, and a dry dock for the repair of yachts of up to 140 feet. The Marine Boulevard (Paseo del Mar) adds 10 new stores, a restaurants and a piano bar to the Marina Casa de Campo. The marina is estimated to be a RD$1 billion investment and is the largest in the country so far.
At the ceremony, Central Romana Corporation, owner of the Marina, announced plans for investing RD$8 billion in other tourism projects, including an expansion of Casa del Mar hotel, another hotel in the Bayahibe area, a shopping center and 14 new luxury apartments at the Casa de Campo marina, and a fifth golf course for Casa de Campo.
Palma Real Shopping Center
The largest shopping center in the Punta Cana area is under way. The Palma Real Shopping Center offers 10,000 square meters of shopping space for 60 stores to the booming Punta Cana area. The promoters, the Spanish firms Sol Melia, Anta Empresas and Proinversion expect the mall to be open by the end of this year. Federico Ortega, president of Anta Emrpesas described it as the meeting point for the Bavaro-Punta Cana tourism area. An estimated 1.5 million tourists visited the area last year in addition to the 50,000 local residents. The company has plans to offer a free shuttle service for hotel guests in the area. The new mall's distinguishing feature is its blue-tiled roof.
Travel & Leisure on DR
Travel & Leisure's has included the Dominican Republic's two Small Luxury Hotels of the World group boutique hotels in its March 2006 magazine feature on the 12 new hot spots around the world where to find "pristine sand, local culture and picture-perfect sunsets." The DR's two Small Luxury Hotels, Casa Colonial in Puerto Plata and Sivory Punta Cana cater to those seeking rest and relaxation.
Calling it the charm of the DR, the magazine writes that you know when a destination hasn't yet been trammeled by Americans, "when it's still a challenge to find locals who speak English."
For information on these two boutique hotels, see

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