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October 27, 2015
  • Spotlight on Puerto Plata's Jazz Festival
  • Electric Paradise in Punta Cana
  • Grupo Catalonia takes over Hilton management
  • DR goes for first share of Chinese tourism
  • No restrictions on new Finnair flights to DR
Spotlight on Puerto Plata's Jazz Festival
The 19th Dominican Republic Jazz Festival starts on Wednesday, 4 November 2015 with five nights of free concerts scheduled for Santiago, Sosua, Puerto Plata and Cabarete through Sunday, 8 November. The Dominican Republic Jazz Festival is an annual event organized by FEDUJAZZ with the backing of the Ministry of Tourism. It is regarded as the longest running jazz festival in the Caribbean.
This year, Matt Marvuglio, dean of the Performance Division at Berklee College of Music, and Marco Pignataro, Managing Director of the Berklee Global Jazz Institute are joining the Artistic Advisory Board for the festival. They will also serve as advisors to FEDUJAZZ, the education foundation that provides free music education for young people in the Dominican Republic.
While the festival is free, VIP tickets are available for a price, with priority seating, complimentary beverages, and other festival perks with proceeds benefiting the FEDUJAZZ music foundation. The foundation enables 150 students to attend free music lessons at the Fedujazz center in Cabarete, with over 1,000 children from the north coast attending master classes with the famous musicians who come for the event.
Since its inception, the Dominican Republic Jazz Festival has brought over internationally acclaimed Latin Grammy and GRAMMY Award winning musicians such as Ignacio Berroa, Joe Lovano, Chuck Mangione, Ray Baretto, Nestor Torres, Chucho Valdes, Horacio "El Negro" Hernandez and Arturo Sandoval and many other talents.
Electric Paradise in Punta Cana
Electric Paradise is scheduled to take place at Juanillo Beach in Cap Cana, Punta Cana on Saturday, 19 December 2015. It is an evening for fans of electronic music with well-known DJs coming from around the world. Music starts at 6:30pm.
Last week's DR1 Travel News erroneously carried the details for the 2014 event.
Tickets for sale at
Grupo Catalonia takes over Hilton management
Grupo Catalonia of Barcelona, which operates two hotels in the Cabeza de Toro area of Punta Cana on the east coast and another in Dominicus Beach in the southeastern destination of La Romana-Bayahibe is taking over the operation of the Hilton Santo Domingo for the duration of a new 15-year contract. The hotel is in the Malecon Center on Santo Domingo's Malecon seafront boulevard (Av. George Washington 500). The hotel is owned by Administradora de Activos SA (ADASA) a subsidiary of the Centro Financiero BHD Leon, as reported in Diario Libre.
Grupo Catalonia operates the 415-room Catalonia Gran Dominicus in Bayahibe, the 688-room Catalonia Bavaro Beach Golf & Casino Resort and the 278-room Catalonia Royal Bavaro in Cabeza de Toro, Punta Cana.
DR goes for first share of Chinese tourism
A Tourism Symposium is taking place from 26-29 October 2015 at the Iberostar Punta Cana organized by the Ministry of Economy, Planning and Development with the support of the trade representation of the People's Republic of China. In 2014, 140 million Chinese tourists traveled abroad but according to Dominican statistics, only 2,652 of this total visited the Dominican Republic. Tourism Minister Fausto Fernandez says the government is working to increase the number of Chinese tourists visiting the country. Fernandez says the government is working with tourism sector officials in Cuba to offer multi-destination packages. Cuba will soon have direct flights from Beijing and Chinese tourists could connect to the Dominican Republic to extend their Caribbean experience.
No restrictions on new Finnair flights to DR
During the 8th ICAO Air Services Negotiation Event (ICAN/2015) that was held in Antalya, Turkey from 19 to 23 October 2015 a Memorandum of Understanding was signed and a liberal Air Services Agreement initialed between Finland and the Dominican Republic. There will now be no restrictions on routes and capacity. Finnair was designated to operate in accordance with these arrangements. The agreement would allow Finnair to pick up and drop off passengers in countries outside of Finland and the Dominican Republic.
The principles mentioned above will be applied provisionally with immediate effect, within the scope of national laws and regulations, from the date of signature of the Memorandum of Understanding (21 October 2015).
Finnair has operated flights to Puerto Plata in the past.
The agreement was signed by Matti Tupamaki for the Finnish Air Transport Authority and his counterpart Roger Jover, president of the DR Civil Aviation Board (JAC).

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