Economy January 30, 2024 | 8:15 am

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Collado: Legal hurdles stall Santo Domingo Convention Center land acquisition

Santo Domingo.- The Ministry of Tourism (Mitur) has the RD$1.200 million earmarked for the acquisition of the old Hispaniola hotel land, declared of public utility by the Government for the construction of the eagerly anticipated Santo Domingo Convention Center.

Regrettably, the transaction has encountered obstacles due to an ongoing legal dispute involving businessmen Miguel Vargas Maldonado, Carlos Sánchez, and another Spanish entrepreneur, as reported by the Minister of Tourism, David Collado, on this Friday.

Collado disclosed that the plans and designs for the Convention Center are completed, along with the Government’s commitment to its construction, according to El Dinero.

“The Government is ready to deposit the RD$1,200 million (from the Mitur budget) into an account. They indicate it might be more. An agreement will be signed, acknowledging this deposit, so that upon reaching a resolution in the dispute, the funds can be collected. This is to ensure the unimpeded progress of the Santo Domingo Convention Center’s development,” he stated.

Collado emphasized the positive impact convention centers have on tourism, citing a potential 7% increase in hotel occupancy in countries with such facilities. This underscores the significance of the Convention Center for the city of Santo Domingo.

To expedite the land acquisition and development process, Collado mentioned seeking guidance and assistance from IFEMA, Spain. “Our aim is to overcome the litigation obstacle posed by the private sector,” he added.

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Paul Tierney
January 30, 2024 8:30 am

Just wondering, how was the location selected? Why is Miguel Vargas Maldonado involved in a legal dispute? It questions… if some kind of sweetheart deal went south? Money?

January 30, 2024 9:06 am
Reply to  Paul Tierney

And who owns the hotel now?

Paul Tierney
January 30, 2024 10:02 am
Reply to  Stetson

The hotel is gone and so is its big brother, hotel Santo Domingo, both now memories only. Missing them.

The hotel was purchased sometime between 1996-2000 by Vargas. The PLD administration questioned it in 2008. Had something to do with Sanchez and the Spanish businessman claiming ownership. And here we are today.

Think the convention center is going to be put on the back burner while the courts turtle their way to resolve the situation.

The land is in an extra prime location.