Monday, February 08, 2016


So, I came across this news and wondered why would they (Santo Domingo) build yet another huge edifice on the Malecon with no long-term plan to sustain it? The city needs far more foreign conventions/business/travelers and the city is not proactive in seeking this all-important segment of income. Have they not seen the trend of major players fleeing the area?

Work is progressing on the construction of what will be the largest convention hall in the Dominican Republic at the Ministry of Foreign Relations (Mirex) Malecon headquarters. The hall will have seating for 4,500 people.

The government is building the convention hall in Santo Domingo to host the Ordinary General Assembly of the Organization of American States that is set for 13-15 June 2016, summits of foreign ministers and heads of government of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) and around 20 other international events starting June 2016. The inauguration is scheduled to take place before the general elections on 15 May 2016. In the past, most major conventions were held in the large convention facilities in hotels in Punta Cana on the east coast.

As reported in El Dia, the new center is an extension of the existing Ministry of Foreign Relations meetings center. Two new halls are being added as well as underground parking for 450 vehicles. The latest audiovisual technology is being incorporated at the center, which is being equipped to host meetings for between 200 and 4,500 people.

Mirex administrative director Freddy Radhames Rodriguez says that the decision to expand the existing meeting center at the Ministry of Foreign Relations was taken because marketing feasibility studies showed it was "the perfect place for infrastructure of this kind." He highlighted that the location in front of the Caribbean Sea and the existing 1,000 hotel rooms within walking distance on the Malecon itself complements the project. The budget for the convention center is RD$400 million.

According to Rodriguez, the Ministry plans to make the center available for all sorts of events organized by the government and the private sector at a relatively low cost. The center will be available for assemblies, religious events, workshops, and business and scientific conferences.