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Old 08-02-2019, 07:54 AM
Status: "Thinking of the future..." (set 23 days ago)
 
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Another American moving to the Dominican Republic. He is in Santiago, 2 hours north of Santo Domingo.



Canadian woman moves to Dominican Republic and show her breakfast and patio. lol



Dominican woman decides to leave New Jersey, USA and with her husband moves to a town in the Dominican Republic and open a small business.

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Old 08-02-2019, 10:25 AM
Status: "Thinking of the future..." (set 23 days ago)
 
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I thought I included this video in the previous post.

An Dominican Interior Designer informally explains the situations in resort areas. It is in Spanish and a little old, but what she says still stands. Among what she says is that she's originally from Santo Domingo, life is very good in Bávaro where she lives for 3 years at that time. Santo Domingo now fills her with stress. Most of the builders are Spaniards (European in general, but Spain is the leading country of origin in this aspect) and Russians have become major purchasers in the area. She has seen the incursion of Mexican conglomerates in the area. She also explains that her work is better in large projects than in medium or small ones because she is able to economize with a cheaper price for labor force, materials, etc in big projects. She also mentions that her lifestyle includes her skin color which she darkens by sun tanning a few times to make herself more beautiful. Life is good, but she has to make time for entertaining herself, otherwise its all work, work, and work.

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Old 08-02-2019, 10:55 AM
Status: "Thinking of the future..." (set 23 days ago)
 
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Ministerio de Educación

The Ministry of Education building is much more interesting to see in person. The building was built in the modern style by Rafael Leónidas Trujillo. With many of its stones that make up the facade, it stands out when passing by.





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Old 08-02-2019, 06:47 PM
Status: "Thinking of the future..." (set 23 days ago)
 
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Pharmacy Chains in Santo Domingo

There are independent pharmacies all over the place and medicines that in the US requires a prescriptions can be bought without one in most pharmacies. They will also sell you one pill say of a headache if all a person wants is one pill instead of a whole bottle. Pharmacies also deliver to the office, factory, home, etc. If for any reason a person needs to go into a pharmacy, say the person left their prescription pill in their home country, if a person knows the name they can walk to these chain Dominican pharmacy and have their prescription filled. These chain pharmacies also guarantee the same quality in the service and merchandise everywhere they have a store. In many CarolX branches, for example, is the Dominican version of CVS or Walgreens in the US, selling other stuff in addition to the typical pharmacy items (though I haven't seen one with a supermarket... for now). These are the main pharmacy chains in the Dominican Republic. They are constantly expanding.


CarolX (The largest chain and last year they bought the Farmax chain -33 stores nationwide- which added more stores in addition to the ones they were creating prior to the acquisition -rumor place this acquisition at $300 million-).


Los Hidalgos


FarmaValue


Medicar GBC


Farma Xtra
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Old 08-03-2019, 08:04 AM
Status: "Thinking of the future..." (set 23 days ago)
 
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Arturo Fuente Cigar Club

A very nice cigar club which includes many areas where a person can relax. Nicely furnished. I'm not a smoking person, but went in here once to figure out what all the fuss was about. lol The Fuente family has been traditionally making cigars in Cuba for hundreds of years, but with the rise of Fidel Castro they settled in Tampa, Florida, USA. Then one day they decided to visit the Dominican Republic and it was the first time they felt as if they were in their native Cuba. They were impressed so much that they moved to the DR, moving their entire cigar operation from Tampa, Florida. One of them even married a Dominican woman that he met afterwards. The family created this cigar club a few years ago and donates a lot for humanitarian causes. The young guy (Carlos, isn't very young now) made the move and brought his entire family, including his parents, says he will never leave the DR. Its the only place that he is able to live what his father said he experienced in Cuba. His company creates various cigars including Opus X, which has won in international competitions.

Spaniards were the first to take tobacco back to Spain and from there to the whole world. The Spaniards used to see the Taino indians in this islands with a "fire" on their mouth and a smoke coming out. Eventually the Spaniards were introduced to the habit of smoking. Tobacco has always been grown in the Cibao region and to this day is the tobacco region of the country, tobacco fields are very close even to Santiago. This crop has always been the domain of Spanish Canarians who were the owners of the land and they made up the workforce as well. In the 1700s the King of Spain gave concessions to Dominican tobacco producers and the DR became a major tobacco producer and exporter to Seville, Spain. The tobacco was discovered to be as good as the one made in Cuba. After the Dominican Republic became independent and stable, the Germans developed a tobacco monopoly in the north. The tobacco grown in the Cibao Valley was mostly collected by German companies in Santiago, from there taken in a mule caravan over the mountains and the German companies also had subsidiaries in Puerto Plata. From there they put it on a boat, ship it to Germany where the tobacco was made into cigars and distributed throughout Europe. This monopoly ended with the arrival of the American military which discouraged other businesses but encourage and protected American companies. At the turn of the XX Century some families immigrated from Cuba to the DR and establish cigar operations in the Cibao, such as the León Jiménez family. With the rise of Fidel Castro in Cuba, most of the major cigar producers in Cuba move their operations to the Cibao region of the DR (Cohiba, Davidoff, etc). Today the DR is the world's top producer of most of the best cigars, a few decades ago beating Cuba for the first time. Santiago continues to be the center of the cigar business. Very few Cuban families did what the Fuente family had done, which was establish themselves in the US and then in the 1980's uproot themselves to settle in the DR. Most Cuban families in this field either immigrated directly from Cuba or settled in various Latin American countries first and then, after a visit, decided to move to the DR.

Cigar Aficionado is the main worldwide magazine for lovers of cigars and Dominican products are everywhere in all the issues. One of the few habits from Taino indians that became big business during the last 500 years. Tobacco is even a Taino name for the plant, adapted to every main language in the world.




A video where Carlos Fuente Jr answers a few questions about cigars and his company.


The Fuente family producing award winning cigars in the DR.

PS. One thing I forgot to mention is that most Dominican cigars have Dominican grown leafs as filler, but the wrapping leaf on most cigars is actually grown in the Connecticut River Valley in Connecticut, USA. Different leafs from a tobacco plant is used to make a cigar and apparently the leaf grown in Connecticut is the best for wrapping the cigars.

Last edited by AntonioR; 08-03-2019 at 09:01 AM..
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Old 08-03-2019, 10:11 AM
Status: "Thinking of the future..." (set 23 days ago)
 
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Home of the French ambassador in Santo Domingo. Humble place. lol

After Spain, France has had the most influence on the island. Cities wise, the influence has almost always been from Madrid and Seville in Spain, and Paris in France. The US also have much influence (mostly Washington DC and New York City), but that is much more recent. The Chinese are gaining influence rather fast and that has been very recent. Spain brought almost everything to the island, and Spain and France both brought most of the ancestors to most of the people from the top all the way to the bottom of societies.

Other cities that also had an influence, though they also received a heavier dose of influence from the three cities mention already, is Mexico City and La Habana -there was a recent time that La Habana was the point of reference for many Dominicans, but Fidel Castro ended that- for a long period of time in the Spanish part and New Orleans in the French part.


Last edited by AntonioR; 08-03-2019 at 10:34 AM..
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Old 08-03-2019, 12:39 PM
Status: "Thinking of the future..." (set 23 days ago)
 
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Anthony's, Sema, & La Novia de Villa

Both are Dominican department stores with several locations in the city and in the interior of the country. They tend to focus on clothes. Anthony's is a Dominican company and Sema started with an Arab family, now their generations is Dominican. La Novia de Villa was founded by another Arab family (Lebanese) and they focus on kids and baby stuff. Has several locations.





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Old 08-03-2019, 02:29 PM
Status: "Thinking of the future..." (set 23 days ago)
 
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Acropolis Center

A shopping mall and office building complex. It was design by an American architect in the United States and the owners I think are Americans too. For many years this building was one of the tallest in the Dominican Republic. The shopping center attracted a lot of attention due to its design and shape. The atrium is covered in various themes throughout the year.









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Old 08-03-2019, 06:58 PM
Status: "Thinking of the future..." (set 23 days ago)
 
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Ice Cream Chains in Santo Domingo

Whether its the tropical heat or simply a craving, ice cream is readily available in Santo Domingo. Many of these chains are available all over the country. Yogen Fruz is always attached to Helados Bon, though all Helados Bon locations doesn't have a Yogen Fruz attached. Helados Bon is unquestionably the largest ice cream chain in the Dominican Republic (they are everywhere) and they have many flavors that isn't available in much of the USA. Valentino tends to also have a variety and are more creamy than the competition. A few years ago the Helados Bon chain was sold 70% of their shares to a Colombian group for $38 million.

A handful of decades ago Santo Domingo was a city missing many stuff and that was the reality in the largest city in the country. A person needed to leave the DR to buy certain things, but now it's different. It change in a relatively short amount of time. A few decades and the city is a different place.


Helados Bon & Yogen Fruz


Valentino (If I can't find a Valentino, which is my favorite, only then would I go to Helados Bon. lol)


Baskin Robbins


Haagen Dazs
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Old 08-04-2019, 12:22 PM
Status: "Thinking of the future..." (set 23 days ago)
 
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Victoria by Porterhouse

Very good steakhouse in Santo Domingo. It is on the pricey side. Despite that Santo Domingo was the first place in the Americas that Canarias (Date Palms native to the Canary Islands) were planted (in fact, Diego Columbus brought the first ones from Spain) and today they are abundant along the sidewalks of avenidas Churchill and Jiménez Moya, reality is that these tupes of trees are not numerous compare to other native species. Some species, such as the desert Date Palms in the photo, are found mainly in private gardens and along pricey residential communities and businesses, especially pricey restaurants. Despite the Canarias have been on the island for longer than anywhere in the Americas (a favorite in cities such as Mexico City, Santiago de Chile, and Bogotá to name a few), all Date Palms are introduced species.

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