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February 20, 2007
  • Tourism starts off with a bang
  • Details on Air Dominicana
  • Former US President Bush visits
  • Trump's Cap Cana
Tourism starts off with a bang
Tourism started out strong in 2007 with a growth of 5.5%. Diario Libre writes that over 89% of passengers who passed through the country's airports were non-resident tourists. This January 375,933 non-resident tourists entered the DR, 19,686 more than in January 2006 when 356,247 non-resident tourists entered the country. Total arrivals in January were 420,915. Punta Cana continues to lead in tourist arrivals, with 52.8%, followed by Puerto Plata with 19%. Las Americas International (Santo Domingo) received 14% of arrivals, La Romana 8.9%. The smaller terminals of Cibao (Santiago), La Isabela (Santo Domingo) and El Catey (Samana) received the additional 5%.
See www.bancentral.gov.do
Details on Air Dominicana
Tourism Minister Felix Jimenez has released details about the announced launch of Air Dominicana, a Dominican-Spanish aviation investment. Jimenez explains that 25% of the new airline's shareholdings would belong to Air Europa, which would operate the airline. Another 25% share would be in the hands of American investors, while the remaining 50% would be divided up among the Dominican government and Dominican investors. Diario Libre writes that Aerodom, the Punta Cana Group and a group headed by Santiago businessman Poppy Bermudez have all shown interest in the project. Jimenez has met with Air Europa president Pepe Hidalgo. Reportedly, the company could be drafted by the end of the month. Currently, Dominican registration planes are not able to fly to the US, but Jimenez is optimistic that this ban will be lifted in time for the operations. He says that as a last resort the planes would be registered in another country, to get around the restriction.
Former US President Bush visits
Former US President George H. Bush is vacationing in Casa de Campo, La Romana, as reported in Listin Diario. This is his sixth visit. He arrived at La Romana International Airport by private jet. Press reports indicate that Bush Sr. is fond of skeet and golf facilities at Casa de Campo. He is staying at a private villa.
Trump's Cap Cana
Donald J. Trump has chosen Cap Cana in the Punta Cana area for his next luxury resort development. Announced yesterday in New York, "Trump at Cap Cana" will involve the building of a golf course and golf villas, the sale of golf lots, estate lots, a beach club, a condo hotel and residences with Caribbean sea-views. A Trump press release describes the project to be valued at over two billion dollars. The agreement was signed in New York City by Cap Cana's board of directors' president, Ricardo Hazoury and Donald J. Trump, president of The Trump Organization.
The first Trump project in the DR, Trump Farallon Estates at Cap Cana will include 68 estates (of at least 1.5 acres each). The estates will be built within a gated community on top of the highest bluff in the area, at 200 feet above sea level. "This is going to be a magnificent project, and we look forward to developing thousands of spectacular acres into an elite destination that will be known worldwide in the years to come. I look forward to visiting often with my family," said Trump.
Speaking for Cap Cana, Ricardo Hazoury said: "By combining the Trump experience with Cap Cana's natural beauty and the talent demonstrated by our team of professionals, in addition to the DR's stable economy, we are confident that together we will continue to seamlessly create a new standard for tourism, real estate, and hotels for the entire region. We have no doubt that this is a win-win combination and look forward to all that lies ahead."

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