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July 17, 2007
  • Travel up 6%
  • Bavaro Open
  • Punta Cana update
  • Sun Village is about branding and movies
Travel up 6%
The World Tourism Organization reports that international tourist arrivals worldwide rose by over 6% from January through April 2007, representing an additional 15 million arrivals compared to the same four-month period in 2006. This growth is attributed to continuing world prosperity, emerging markets and developing economies in general, especially in Asia. The WTO says that the expansion of low-cost airline services around the world, including the emergence of long-haul low-cost airlines, has been a major factor in stimulating air transport, making it increasingly accessible to a constantly rising share of the world's population.
Interestingly, the Caribbean does not share the higher than expected growth.
The WTO says that competing for Caribbean vacationers is the strong offer of cruise lines that have significantly expanded their cruise programs in Europe and the Mediterranean.With thousands of US travelers securing a passport for the first time, the Caribbean could lose out to people who will now have access to travel to Europe.
Likewise, in 2006 Asia and the Pacific achieved a volume of international tourism receipts similar to that of the Americas for the first time.
The WTO ranks the DR as the 44th in international tourist arrivals by country for 2006 with four million arrivals, only surpassed in the Latin America and the Caribbean by Mexico with 21.4 million arrivals (8th in the world) and Brazil with five million arrivals (37th in the world).
See www.unwto.org
Bavaro Open
The Bavaro Open tournament will be held again at the Cocotal Golf & Country Club in Punta Cana. The one-day event is scheduled for Saturday, 15 September. Competing golfers are the resort general managers and builders of the East Coast beach area that covers from Cap Cana to Uvero Alto. The event will be played in the two-man scramble format. Prizes include a car for a hole-in-one, prizes for 1st, 2nd and 3rd place winners, longest drive award, and closest to the pin award. The tournament is organized by Special Events International.
For more information, contact Rafael Taveras at [email protected] or call 809 850 8111.
Punta Cana update
Ernesto Veloz, president of the Association of Hotels of the East, said that Punta Cana continues to be the fastest growing destination in the Dominican Republic. Speaking on Dominican TV's Uno + Uno program, Veloz announced that 2,800 hotel rooms are under construction, many of which are expected to enter into operation this winter season. Veloz says that there are currently 24,600 hotel rooms along the East Coast beach strip, and they expect to have 28,000 in operation by next year. Veloz mentioned that in any given week Punta Cana International Airport receives up to 200 flights bringing tourists from different parts of the world. He said that airport receives 52.5% of the tourists who travel to the DR. He explained that the Boulevard Turistico del Este that will connect Punta Cana Airport with hotel areas to the north (up to Uvero Alto) is advancing, and 14 of its 43.5 kms have already been paved. Once the expressway is completed, an additional 10 kilometers will be added to connect it to Miches, the next eastern destination due for development. The expressway has cut driving time considerably, and the Bavaro area is now an eight-minute drive from the airport.
Sun Village is about branding and movies
Derek Elliot, CEO of Sun Village Resorts in Cofresi, Puerto Plata, is betting on the DR having already become a quality brand, based on the quality of its hotels and beaches. He recently told Listin Diario's Ritmo Social magazine that the DR "is a place where the superstars are heading, and where movies are being filmed." Elliot Group recently signed an agreement with the Maxim brand for properties in both Puerto Plata and Juan Dolio beach destinations. The Maxim brand provides entry to its 20 million magazine readers, and is a way of attracting celebrities from the movie and show business world. Maxim at Cofresi opens this October 2007, and Maxim at Juan Dolio will be ready for February 2008. Elliot is behind the Dominican International Film Festival, now in its third year, with the participation of film world people from the United States. Sun Village Resort was site for the filming of "Love Wrecked" starring Amanda Bynes in 2004 and "Man about Town" with Ben Affleck in 2006.
See http://dr1.com/directories/hotels/sun_village.shtml

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