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Old 11-30-2023, 06:58 PM
Location: Somewhere on the Moon.
9,782 posts, read 14,624,265 times
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A handful of places in East Santo Domingo (Santo Domingo Este or SDE), Dominican Republic. I'm not a big fan of this municipality because the mayors it has had in the last few years leave much to be desired. Anyway, it's the largest municipality in the Greater Santo Domingo area outside the Capital. Some areas are nice, but it isn't a major tourist attraction either. Traditionally it has been a bedroom community for Santo Domingo proper as most people worked there, but in the last few decades the area has been developing in its own right.

City Hall. One of the nicest buildings is City Hall of SDE. I think the building is nice, but built in the wrong place. Oh well, what's done is done.

Megacentro. This is the largest mall in SDE and one of the largest in the DR. Might be the second or third largest. Part of its interior was recently redone and looks nice. The Puerto Rican movie theater chain has one of its largest Dominican movie theaters here with 10 screens.

Random residential street.

Colorín. You will see that at the bottom of many billboards because this is one of the main owners of billboards along Dominican highways and in the cities. They are based here. The founder of this company was born into a dirt poor family and basically built the business from nothing to what it's today. A remarkable story.

Random on Las Américas Highway.

Faro A Colón. This is a monument-mausoleum to Christopher Columbus and the discovery. Although the idea to create this started in the 1910's/1920's and was meant to receive contribution from all the countries in the Americas, it was finally finished in 1992 with the Dominican government paying most of it. It was designed by a UK architect (I think he was from Scotland) as he won all designs shown at a competition somewhere in South America. It's a giant Christian cross to symbolize the Christianization of the Americas. Where the cross meet on top is a lighthouse meant to symbolize the navigating aspect of Columbus. Inside there is sort of a museum with rooms dedicated to many countries in the Americas (all artifacts donated by each country.) In the center of the crosx directly underneath the lighthouse is the remains of Christopher Columbus who in his will specifically says he wanted to be buried in Santo Domingo. There is a controversy regarding this because Spain claims it has the remains of Chiristooher Columbus in a Seville Cathedral, but it appears when the Era of France started and the Spanish left Santo Domingo, they intended to take Christopher Columbus remains which were in the Okdest Cathedral of the New World (across the river) along with his son Diego. It was believed the Spanish took Christopher's remain to Havana, Cuba; but several decades later a hidden cript was discovered in the basement of the cathedral and it that those are the remains of Christopher. So naturally, it was thought that the other tumb that the Spanish got into was that of Diego, his son, and that's the remains that eventually made it to Spain. A few years ago the Spanish did a DNA test to match the DNA recovered in the remains that they have with a descendant of Christopher Columbus and since it matched, they claim those are Christopher's remains. Granted, if what they took was Diego's remains and he was Christopher's son, then there should had been a match with the descendant since they are all Columbus. The Spanish suggested doing a DNA test to the remains in Santo Domingo, but they wanted to take the remains to Spin and do the DNA testing over there. As expected, the Dominican government said no. The remains are not leaving the DR. So that's that on that. lol The inauguration was in 1992 to mark the 500th anniversary of the discovery, an event held by the conservative government at the time. Pope John Paul II was one of the invited, his second trip to the DR, and he gave a mass in its honor. The pope mobile he used in Santo Domingo is the white vehicle seen there by the monument. On the monument itself are several quotes from the Bible, the signature of Pope John Paul II and the coat of arms of several countries in the Americas, including many from the Caribbean such as Barbados, Jamaica, Haiti, etc. Much of the structure on the inner parts are covered in marble from Samaná. The thing is supposedly hurricane and earthquake proof. The photos don't fully capture how big it's. There is a small replica of the Columbus Monument at the Knights of Columbus in New Haven, Connecticut, USA. The cross is surrounded by powerful lights that when they are turn on create the symbol of the cross in the sky. The gardens and grounds of the monument used to be very beautiful, but has been victim to vandalism and just outright abandonment in some parts. Of course, this is only looking at one side of the story. I think this area needs to be intervened by the government and restored to its initial grandeur. Plus, add three life size replicas of the Niña, the Pinta and the Santa Maria on the grounds of the monument thst can also be visited. Then build a museum dedicated to all the Native American tribes in the Americas with artifacts from all of them.

Acuario Nacional. This is the only true aquarium in the Dominican Republic. It mostly has sea species found in the Caribbean Sea and Atlantic Ocean in Dominican waters including a manatee that was rescued. A lot of schools from throughout the country come here. It has nice views of part of the skyline of Santo Domingo. For a long time this was the largest aquarium in the Caribbean, but I think there is a larger one in Martinique. Anyways, aquariums are not common in the region. I think other than the DR, Martinique and Cuba are the other two with aquariums.

Random residential street.

Random residential street.

Random commercial street.

Random street.

Los Tres Ojos. These are three caves each containing crystal clear lagoons. The Taino indians had this place as sacred.

Random residential street.

Zona Franca San Isidro. Main entrance to the free trade zone industrial park. This is one of many where they concentrate factories mostly from foreign countries. Most Dominican factories are not in free trade zones industrial parks. Companies that settle in these parks have a special tax regiment and they must export most of whst they produce.


Invivienda. This is one of the largest public housing projects. I think this was created in the 1980's. This is from ehen the government would simply give apartments to really poor people, but they learn people don't treat as well what is given to them vs what they buy. Now the government doesn't give away apartments, rather they charge a small amount.


Another Jumbo hypermarket. Similar to Walmart, Target, etc. They are nationwide, I think the second largest chain.


Main commercial area in Los Mina.


Last edited by AntonioR; 11-30-2023 at 07:08 PM..
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Old 12-01-2023, 04:43 PM
Location: Somewhere on the Moon.
9,782 posts, read 14,624,265 times
Reputation: 10049
North Santo Domingo (Santo Domingo Norte - SDN) is another municipality in Greater Santo Domingo. There isn't much to see here from a touristic point of view. This is the poorest municipality in the metro area. In recent years the northwestern built up area oround Mirador Norte (the neighborhood, not the park), Las Colinas, etc has seen much growth. Most are middle class families from Santo Domingo proper that are attracted here by the newer apartment complexes and sinhle family neighborhoods as they offer a good quality of life for less than in Santo Domingo proper. One of the downsides of that area was that "everything was far," but lately many new stores, supermarkets, even a mall have open making the area more livable, IMO.

Sabana Perdida Cable Car Station. Here is visible one of the stations of the first line of the Santo Domingo Cable Car. It goes to Santo Domingo proper and connects eith the Santo Domingo Metro. With one ticket a person can ride the Metro and the cable car without having to pay twice. The Dominican government is currently extending line 2 of the Metro towards the opposite side of the metro area and recently built a line 2 of the cable car. That cars on that one move a little faster than those in this one seen here.



Ciudad de la Salud. This is one of the major public health care centers built by the Dominican government. It contains four public hospitals (the fourth one appears under construction in the photo, but it's done and functioning.) The Hospital Pediátrico Dr Hugo Mendoza, a children's hospital, has won several accolades as one of the best of its kind in Latin America.


Avenida Hermanas Mirabal. This is the main north-south avenue of the municipality. Along its entirety run the elevated part of Line 1 of the Santo Domingo Metro. It connects with Santo Domingo proper where it goes underground.



Parque Mirador del Norte. This is the largest of the large parks in Greater Santo Domingo. It borders the Isabela River and Santo Domingo proper to the south. It includes a lot of things including a large man made lake with special boats that can be rented, walking/jogging paths, picnic areas, etc. Most of the park is actually conserving the natural state of the area. It has several different entrances from the same avenue that skirts its northern side. This park is one of the best things the Dominican government has created.



Cementerio Memorial. Most cemeteries in the DR follow the Spanish tradition of building small mausoleums where the dead are "buried" rather then putting them in the ground. Well, this is one of the few cemeteries following the United States tradition of the dead are buried in the ground. Unlike most Dominican cemeteries with appear like sort of cities (of the dead), this one has a more manicured park-like setting.

Random. This is one of the areas that has seen lots of growth in recent years due to new apartment buildings targetting the middle class of Santo Domingo proper.

Propagas Headquarters. This is the headquarters of one of the major natural gas companies in the DR, Propagas. There are no natural gas tube grid anywhere in the DR (unlike in much of the US where you get the natural gas into your home as you get potable water or electricity), so they are usually delivered in metal cilinders which then are connected to people's stove. Most modern apartment buildings have what is known as "gas común" which is instead of every apartment having gas cilinders delivered, the complex will have a giant tank that the gas truck fills once a week or once every two weeks, could be once a month in some cases. All the apartments in that complex are connected to the giant tank, so they all automatically get natural gas for cooking without the cilinders. Many vehicles can be converted from using gasoline to GLP and companies like this one also have stations similar to gas stations where a car can get filled with GLP. Usually, GLP is cheaper than gasoline.

Colinas Centro Mall. This is the first mall in SDN. In the photo is under construction, but it's built and open for business. There is a render in the photo of what is suppose to look like.

Colinas del Viento. This is a nice looking new residential project, though in the photo the main entrance is visible. Venezuelan investors are the ones that created this.

Random. This is the Mirador Norte neighborhood (not the park) with a recent uptick of construction taking place.




Military Base 1. Here are four images of the Col. Ángel Remigio Taveras Gutiérrez Military Base. This is a typical military base of the Dominican army.

Main entrance.

Military Base 2. Unlike military bases in the United States, in the Dominican Republic they also devote to the Catholic Church, which is the official church of the country. There in the image you can see a place devoted to the Virgin of the Highest Grace (Altagracia), the official virgin protector of the Dominican Republic and the Dominican people.

Military Base 3. There you can see some of the military tanks and jeeps.

Military Base 4. Basketball court for the cadets and soldiers stationed here and a few other areas of the military base.

La Nueva Barquita 1. This is an example of the new public houding complexes the government builts for poor dwellers. Everyone living here used to live in a slum called La Barquita, hence the name La Nueva Barquita (The New Barquita). Now these communities include a new church, a place where single mothers can drop their kids who are taken cared of while they work, an amphitheater, a clinic, basketball courts, a baseball field, a skatepark, etc. It even includes a new route of the OMSA, which is the government owned public buses that cover Greater Santo Domingo and Santiago de los Caballeros, the two most populated urban areas in the country.

La Nueva Barquita 2.

Last edited by AntonioR; 12-01-2023 at 05:02 PM..
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Old 12-02-2023, 09:05 AM
Location: Somewhere on the Moon.
9,782 posts, read 14,624,265 times
Reputation: 10049
Lastly, a few random look at West Santo Domingo (Santo Domingo Oeste or SDO) which is the smallest municipality bordering Santo Domingo proper in the Dominican Republic. Although this area has been developing in the commercial and industrial fronts, it still is a mostly bedroom community of Santo Domingo proper.

Zona Industrial de Herrera. This is one of the largest industrial zones in the Dominican Republic and one of the largest industrial zones in the Caribbean. It has a very high concentration of factories of all kinds, warehouses and distribution centers, publishing houses, distelliries, etc mostly for serving the domestic market. There you can see the administrative offices of Bon, the largest Dominican ice cream company with ice cream parlors literally everywhere in the country. They also sell many of their ice creams as take home products in various supermarkets throughout the country. They also export some of their products, but mostly to Dominican hotspots abroad. For example, many of their Bon products are found in some supermarkets and bodegas in NYC neighborhoods with a high concentration of Dominicans. Though Dominican founded and it operates mostly in the Dominican Republic by a Dominican that wasn't rich by any stretch of the imagination, a few years ago much of the business was sold to a Colombian company for US$39 million. To think a few decades ago Bon was basically worth nothing. Who knew you can build a fortune just selling ice cream.

Santo Domingo Country Club. This is the oldest golf club in the Dominican Republic. It was created in the 1920's by the US Marines during the US invasion (1916-1924.) Until then golf was unknown in the country. It was founded when there was nothing in SDO. Today, this is a private club that is only open to members and visitors to a member. Becoming a member is virtually impossible if you don't know one and even then there is a stringent process to go through. Unlike most golf courses in the Dominican Republic which are members of FEDOGOLF and as such, the members of FEDOGOLF have access to all of them and additional discounts, the SDC is not a member of FEDOGOLF. It doesn't just have a golf course, but also a club house, pool, tennis courts, etc. The main entrance is the same as in the photo, except it was remodeled not long ago for the clubs 100 year anniversary. Although gold was invented in Scotland, in the DR is a legacy of American influence since it arrived in the country with the Americans.

Banreservas Club. Banreservas is the largest bank in the Dominican Republic and it has two clubs, this one (the largest) and anothet one in Santiago de los Caballeros. Its members are employees at Banreservas. It doesn't have a golf course, but it does have things such as pools, tennis courts, baseball field, club house, etc.

Autoridad Potuaria Dominicana (aka Haina Port). This is the main entrance to the largest and most important sea port in the Dominican Republic. Most things imported in the country via ships are done through here. Most things exported vis ships from the Dominican Republic to the rest of the world is also done through here. It was built by the Dominican government during the dictatorship of Trujillo. Before then, the port in Santo Domingo by the Colonial Zone was the country's most important. To have an idea since when ships, boats and galleons have docked there, it still has the trunk of the tree (which died in the early 20th century) where Christopher Columbus used to tie his galleons.

Random. This is the only seaside looking towards the Caribbean Sea residential neighborhood in SDO. In the horizon can be seen parts of the Haina Port and thr Haina Industrial Zone, another of the areas with the highest concentration of factories in the Caribbean. That coast seen there is in the San Cristóbal province. In colonial times the area around that province was known as "Los Ingenios" (the mills) and as "Los Negros" (the blacks) as can be seen in maps of the island from the 1700's. It was known like that because at the time that area had most of the plantations in the Spanish colony, which was a rarity since what was common was cattle ranches. It was one of the few areas of the Spanish colony where most of the people were dark blacks. In much of the colony that was inhabited, because most was an undisturbed wilderness, the average people were either very light skin mixes people or white, depending on the place; and almost all lived away from thr coast.

Random. This is the main shopping area in the Herrera neighborhood.

Avenida de los Beisbolistas. This is one of the major nort-south avenues in SDO, nowadays very commericalized. In the image can be seen InnovaCentro, a hardware store chain found mostly in the Santo Domingo area. Dominican hardware stores sell many other things not found in American hardware stores such as stoves, refrigerators, microwaves, etc.


Avenida Prolongación 27 de Febrero. One of SDO's main east-west avenues lined from residential buildigs, stores, etc.


Colinas del Oeste. The entry to one of the gated communities created recently in SDO.

Statue of Pedro Martínez. The Manoguayabo neighborhood is where Dominican MLB baseball star Pedro Martínez grew up. This small statue honors him.


Occidental Mall. Of a recent creation, this is the first mall in SDO.



Replica of the Eiffel Tower.







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