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April 1, 2009
  • Samana seeks name as Most Beautiful Bay
  • Surprise win at the Cap Cana PGA
  • Caribbean Investment Conference in Bermuda
  • New museum in Santo Domingo
Samana seeks name as Most Beautiful Bay
The Tourism Cluster of Samana is helping Samana Bay in its bid to be named one of the Most Beautiful Bays in the World. The designation is awarded by the Most Beautiful Bays in the World Club, formed in 1997, which seeks to encourage sustainable exploitation of pristine natural resources. The application will be considered during the organization's Executive Meeting, scheduled for their May 2009 Congress in Portugal. Galip Gur of Turkey and Herve Laigo of France recently visited the DR to study Samana's application.
They explained that Club members meet to exchange ideas and concrete achievements aimed at achieving optimum sustainable exploitation of the attractions. The organization uses UNESCO cultural and natural criteria when selecting new members.
Selection criteria define that it has to be a bay, not simply a city on a bay, and the nomination must be presented by a wide representation of the society. It has to be a protected area with interesting flora and fauna and notable natural attractions. It needs to be recognized and appreciated nationally and internationally. It should be emblematic for the local population, and should include a variety of economic activities of interest to the local population.
The proposal for Samana is being prepared by consultant Luc Litzler and is a joint initiative by the Center for Conservation and Eco-Development of Samana and its Environs (CEBSE), the Tourism Cluster of Samana (CTS) and the Foundation for the Development of Samana (FDS), with the support of Paraiso Cano Hondo hotel, the Centro Cuesta Nacional, Bahia Principe Hotels, Victoria Marine, Motomarina and the Santo Domingo Hotels Association.
"We meet to solve problems and share experiences," says Galip Gur of Turkey's Bodrum Bay. Herve Laigo of France's Golfe du Morbihan/Baie de Quiberon says their meetings have been useful in educating the authorities in realizing how actions taken now will affect the future. They have a long-term development focus and their team includes many members who have good persuasion skills and interpersonal relations. What stands out is that the bays continue to be international references for intelligent management of coastal areas.
"This is about changing the way politicians think around the world," they say. He says they can share numerous examples of beautiful places where control was lost and the authorities no longer could stop construction, resulting in the loss of the destination's attraction.
The most beautiful bays club consists of 30 bays in 24 countries - Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Cape Verde, Chile, China, France, Guadeloupe, India, Ireland, Madagascar, Mexico, Montenegro, Morocco, Mozambique, Philippines, Portugal, Senegal, South Africa, Spain, the Turkey, the United States and Vietnam.
According to the organization, the goal is to reconcile the attraction and the value of these fragile sites when knowing that too much traffic or badly managed tourist development can ultimately lead to destruction of the site and consequently less interest from the public.
See www.world-bays.com
Surprise win at the Cap Cana PGA
A dramatic eagle on the 17th hole by Keith Fergus towards the end of the PGA Senior Tour Cap Cana Championship on Sunday, 30 March led to his one-stroke victory over Mark O'Meara and Andy Bean. Fergus won US$315,000 of the US$2.1 million Cap Cana Championship that took place last week in Cap Cana, in Punta Cana. He finished with a 54-hole total of 13-under-par 203.
Trailing O'Meara and Bean by one stroke with two holes remaining, Fergus sank a sand wedge from 95 yards for his decisive eagle, which led to his second title on the Champions Tour and first since winning the 2007 Ginn Championship at Hammock Beach.
"I knew it was my week when I hit that shot at No. 17," Fergus said, as reported by David Senko of the PGA Tour. "It worked just the way my caddie and I planned. We wanted to hit it just past the hole and have it come back and it did just that."
Fergus' shot dimmed the hopes for O'Meara and Andy Bean, who at the time of Fergus' eagle held a one stroke-advantage. Bean had already completed his round. The ending was especially disappointing for O'Meara, who was winless in his previous 35 starts on the Champions Tour.
"I'm disappointed. I just didn't hit the ball as well as I needed to and I could have been a little bit more aggressive," O'Meara said, "I had my chances and just didn't do it, but all the power to Keith. There's a lot of luck involved in a shot like that, but there's also a lot of skill, too."
In the Cap Cana Championship, Bernhard Langer set a new tournament record when he shot an 8-under-par 64 on Sunday. It broke the previous mark of 65 set in 2007 by Joe Ozaki and matched by three others.
Caribbean Investment Conference in Bermuda
Dominican Caribbean Hotel & Tourism Association (CHTA) president, Enrique de Marchena Kaluche and Humberto Rivero, regional director for the International Air Transport Association (IATA) will be the keynote speakers at CHTA's Caribbean Hotel & Tourism Investment Conference opening 14 April in Bermuda.
The conference is dubbed as the most crucial Caribbean Investment Conference to date. "The Caribbean Hotel & Tourism Conference brings together tourism officials, hoteliers, developers, lenders and other parties involved in the hospitality industry the opportunities to network, discuss and explore new strategies to bolster the momentum of growth we have achieved in the past few years," says De Marchena Kaluche. Last year more than US$100 billion was invested in the Caribbean.
CHTA has lined up a comprehensive program of workshops and sessions focusing on pertinent developments which are completely changing the playing field in Caribbean hospitality investment and development.
Speakers will focus on The Outlook for the Caribbean, and where things are headed; The Equity Capital Markets: Who will Lead in 2009 and Beyond?
Jean-Claude Baumgarten, president of the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) will discuss "The Global Travel & Tourism Outlook and How the Caribbean Measures Up."
For more information see www.caribbeanhotelandtourism.com/InvestmentConference.php
New museum in Santo Domingo
Santo Domingo is set to have a new museum this summer. The opening date has been announced for 14 June 2009.
The Museo Memorial de la Resistencia Siglo 20 will be located at 210 Arzobispo Nouel in the Colonial City. It will bring to life memories and events from the US Occupation (1916-1924), the Trujillo Dictatorship (1930-1961), the 1937 massacre of Haitians, the arrival of Spanish immigrants fleeing from the Franco regime in Spain (1939-1946), the resistance movements against Trujillo, the murder of the Mirabal sisters, the murder of Trujillo, events of the 1965 Civil Revolution, and the Balaguer administration (1966-1974). The audio-visual museum is an initiative by a group of citizens who say that by making Dominicans aware of their history they hope to encourage a struggle for a fairer society. It showcases democratic values and human rights, and is a museum of ideas. A sample of what will be on show can be viewed at the Santo Domingo Metro Centro de los Heroes station.
The museum is now encouraging the public to join as members in order to help support the project.

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