By D. Gregory Perrin
Santo Domingo
Dominican Republic
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Your next vacation to the Caribbean doesn’t have to just include margaritas and hours on relaxing on the beach. Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic has so much more to offer then just its world class beaches. The city holds a deep history in that it is the oldest continuously lived-in European city in the Western Hemisphere. Christopher Columbus’s own brother, Bartholomew founded the city in 1496. The remnants of the architecture from the former Spanish colony are still visible today. This makes Santo Domingo an amazing vacation destination for anyone looking to enjoy the beaches of the Caribbean, but wants to get more out of their journey.

EscapeWizard.com invites you to book your next Caribbean getaway to Santo Domingo for a truly unique experience. There are several airports near the city but the largest and most known is the Las Américas International Airport (SDQ). Vacationers can book their flight with EscapeWizard.com by following this link (www.escapewizard.com/flight.php). The city also offers some outstanding hotel options. View our top selections below, then click here (www.escapewizard.com/hotels.php?flag=htl) to book with EscapeWizard.com by using our hotel finder. Here at EscapeWizard.com, we recommend the InterContinental in Santo Domingo as the city's top hotel selection.

Here at EscapeWizard.com, we suggest starting your tour of the city with the National Palace (Palacio Nacional). This building is where the President’s offices are along with other parts of the government, such as the National Congress. The President does not live in this building though because the Dominican Republic does not have an executive residence. This building was erected in the 1940s and is one of the most exquisite buildings in all of the country. Vacationers can find exact times by visiting the palace’s website.

After this location, EscapeWizard.com suggests going to Columbus Park (Parque Colón), which has a large statue in honor of Christopher Columbus. This park is a highly traveled tourist spot and an excellent photo opportunity in the city. Vendors line the park selling CDs and other trinkets from the country. There are tour guides in this park that offer guided tours of the colonial zone for a fee. This is a good option, but EscapeWizard.com suggests getting a price up front.

Next on the list, we recommend touring the Columbus Castle (El Alcázar de Colón). This structure was built by Diego Columbus, who was the son of Christopher Columbus. It is one of the best examples of the Old World architecture that once filled the city of Santo Domingo. This castle also is the location of the Museum of Columbus Castle (Museo Alcázar de Diego Colón) which gives vacationers a chance to view exhibits from the colonial period. The city also has other museums of interest such as the Museum of the Royal Shipyards (Museo de las Atarazanas), which houses items from old shipwrecks and other marine exhibits. This museum is free of charge to all visitors. Lastly, Santo Domingo is the home of the First Cathedral of America (La Catedral Primada de América), which still stands today.

The last major landmark that EscapeWizard.com recommends for all vacationers in Santo Domingo is Ozama Fortress (Fortaleza Ozama). This fortress is the oldest military structure still in existence in the Western Hemisphere. It was built in the 16th century when the Spanish Empire first came to Santo Domingo. A visit to this fortress will teach vacationers about Spanish architecture during the time period and military defense tactics.

Santo Domingo also offers an entire slue of recreational activities for vacationers to the city. The city is known as an excellent place for scuba diving as travelers can make their way around shipwrecked vessels on the ocean’s floor. Travelers who would rather stay above the water they can do just that by going kite surfing over the ocean. Kite surfers are strapped to a board with a small kite to pull the rider across the water. Riders get moving at a good speed and even can get airborne for a time. This is an extremely fun sport but EscapeWizard.com encourages vacationers to take precautions and be careful while surfing the waves.

Overall, Santo Domingo is the perfect Caribbean destination. It has world famous beaches, recreational activities, and centuries of history to take in. Just click on the above link to book your travel experience to the Dominican Republic’s capital city.
Hotels in Santo Domingo
By Tekisha Slack
Catalonia Santo Domingo
George Washington Avenue, #500, Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic
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Catalonia Santo Domingo (formally The Hilton Santo Domingo) is the city’s leading business and conference hotel. Just 30 minutes away from Las Americas International Airport, the 21-floor tower-style property is the newest addition to Hilton’s business hotel collection.

Located in El Melecon, this Hilton includes 228 mostly oceanfront guest rooms. All rooms are complete with high speed internet and floor-to-ceiling windows, showcasing views of the Caribbean Sea. Guest rooms on six Executive Floors offer free newspapers, surround sound music in bathrooms, MP3 alarm clocks and luxury amenities. Guests staying in these rooms have access to the 20th floor Executive Lounge, which serves complimentary breakfast and hors d’oeuvres.

Business travelers will appreciate the fully equipped business center and every guest will enjoy the courteous, multilingual staff, valet and laundry service, foreign currency exchange service, local transportation and a host of other amenities. Guests can work out in the hotel’s spacious health club or hang out at the swimming pool which also has a pool bar and large sundeck. Checks in times are at 3:00 PM and check out is at 12:00 PM. The Hilton Santo Domingo anchors the Malecon Center, a mixed-use complex for retail shopping, cinema, and commercial office space.  In addition to the hotel’s bar and lounge, guests can dine at the hotel’s restaurant, Sol y Sombra. This restaurant offers innovative and international cuisine and an ocean view. Don’t feel like dining out? You can stay in your room and take advantage of the hotel’s in room dining.

With it’s close proximity to the airport, oceanfront guest rooms, fully equipped business center and a myriad of other amenities, the Hilton Santo Domingo is a sure bet for business and leisure travelers alike.

EscapeWizard.com invites you to book your next trip to Santo Domingo and the Hilton Santa Domingo today. Just click on the link to get started (www.escapewizard.com/hotels.php?flag=htl)
Hotels in Santo Domingo
By Tekisha Slack
Crowne Plaza
George Washington Avenue, #218, Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic
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Crown Plaza Hotel (formally part of The InterContinental Brand hotels) are known for their luxury and understated glamour and the Crown Plaza Hotel (formally V Centenario Santo Domingo) property certainly lives up to that. The hotel’s location puts guests within walking distance of the city’s Colonial Zone, Cultural Centre, Business District and main shopping areas.

The hotel offers 196 luxurious rooms with beautiful sea-views, including 29 suites and the majestic Presidential Suite. The guest rooms have everything you would need to feel at home during your stay. High speed internet access, cable / satellite TV with premium channels and pay per view movies, stereo sound system, and video games. A mini bar and full sized refrigerators are just some of the guest room amenities. The luxurious bathrooms contain the basics plus a private toilet area, Whirlpool bathtub, dressing room and even a bidet.  The hotel itself offers an awesome array of amenities. Enjoy a view of the sea while you work out at the elegant, state of the art fitness center. If the spa is your thing, the Intercontinental has a beautiful spa located on the second floor which offers the most modern corporal or facial treatments, and massages. The spa even has a sauna room. You can gamble at the club’s casino or relax at the outdoor pool or barbecue grill while you watch some live entertainment. Whatever it is you are into; this hotel has got something for you!

Santo Domingo is well known for its gastronomy and wide selections. Guests staying at the Intercontinental will be just minutes away from the city’s Colonial Zone whose restaurant’s menus offer many international tastes.
 
Luxury and understated glamour are just some of the things that you will find at Santo Domingo’s InterContinental V Centenario. With its luxurious guestrooms, endless array of amenities and dining choices you may never want to leave.

EscapeWizard.com invites you to book your next trip to Santo Domingo and the InterContinental V Centenario today. Just click on the link to get started (www.escapewizard.com/hotels.php?flag=htl).