Tourism November 27, 2017 | 4:34 pm

For tourism’s sake, the capital needs a large convention center

Sansouci Convetion Center

Santo Domingo.- Tourism industry leaders say Santo Domingo needs a large convention center and a convention bureau, to improve its capacity and make the changes and adaptation to access the lucrative MICE tourist segment.

Dominican Hotels and Tourism Association (ASONAHORES) president Joel Santos; Barceló Urban Hotels director Ventura Serra,   and Santo Domingo Hotel Association (AHSD) president Roberto Henríquez made the proposal during the Santo Domingo Capital Destination Fair 2017, held at Embajador Royal Hideaway Hotel.

The panelists discussed the perspectives of Tourism Business Meetings, Incentives, Conventions and Exhibitions (MICE) and the positive effects on Dominican Republic’s economy, so “a convention center and a Convention Bureau, will represent an exceptional opportunity and a necessity to increase the growth of tourism in the capital.”

Santos, Serra and Henríquez noted that leisure tourism will grow as much as 40 percent in the next few years, but MICE tourism will be three times higher, since both have a marketing structure of their hotels and a great connectivity with other destinations near Santo Domingo.

They said in the tourism activity’s contributions there are direct links between the tourism destination and the local economy. “It’s a marriage that should not be dissolved, because it’s a relationship that is closely linked to the business sector.”

“In order for the country to continue to grow in all of its areas, it must continue to generate business, and if those businesses are tied to tourism there will be economic development, so there’s the need for the State to continue supporting the sector so that the economy keeps growing.”

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