About Santo Domingo
It is the capital of the Dominican Republic. The city is located facing the Caribbean, at the mouth of the Ozama River, on the South coast of the island. It was founded by Bartolome Colon on August 5, 1498 on the eastern bank of the Ozama River; it was later moved by Nicolas de Ovando in 1502 to the western bank of the same river.
Dominicans are justly proud of their ranking as the oldest continuously settled European city in the western hemisphere, and for being the first seat of the Spanish colonial government in the New World. Its metropolitan area already surpasses 4 million inhabitants.
Why Santo Domingo
Planning an incentive trip to Santo Domingo? Then, we have good news for you. The Dominican Republic’s capital city, Santo Domingo, is also the most modern and dynamic metropolis in the Caribbean. La Capital—as it is affectionately called—epitomizes the pulse of Dominican culture, where the old and the new converge seamlessly from centuries. Exquisite architecture, rich history, fancy shopping malls, art galleries, a vibrant nightlife, and a seducing gastronomy await you. Visit historical icons such as the Catedral Primada de America and Columbus Lighthouse.
Santo Domingo Roster
Hello, I'm Ramon Rijo
Regional Managing Director
The ideal skill set for an operations manager in the event business is an extremely broad knowledge of transportation and the hospitality industry, and the ability to provide unequalled customer satisfaction. That’s why Ramon Rijo is the perfect guy to do this job for IVI in the Dominican Republic.
Mr. Rijo is an “information sponge.” He loves soaking up knowledge and information. So it’s no surprise that his education includes physics and mathematics, computer programming, the English language, airline continuing education programs and Dale Carnegie leadership training.
Ramon began his career in the hospitality arena as a ticket agent with ACES, the Columbian-based airline that later became part of Avianca. He then joined Swissport Dominicana, an airport management and security company.
Since then, Rijo continued to add to his experience with increasingly responsible positions with tour, vacation and destination management companies. He has worked at Premiere Tours, Amstar, Vacaciones Barceló and Coco Tours as an excursion agent, reservations supervisor, commercial business manager, office manager and operations manager.
Along the way, Ramon has earned a number of “best employee” and business performance awards. He now is applying his extensive tourism and hospitality knowledge and experience to IVI, where he is empowered to follow his personal credo to “never say no” to client requests.
In his leisure time, Rijo first and foremost is a family man who enjoys spending time with his wife and kids. He also likes music, and as a history buff he enjoys the Discovery and History Channels on television. Ramon’s favorite book is “The Purpose-Driven Life,” and he says he enjoys Christian music because it “gives me peace and strengthens my spirit.”
As a native of the Dominican Republic, Rijo’s favorite sport is baseball, and he is a fan of the Boston Red Sox. And (like many baseball players) he now is learning to play golf.
Local Attraction: El Cortecito Beach and Los Corales. This is a great beach at a delightful beach town and fishing village. With lots of shops and restaurants, it’s considered the “downtown” of Punta Cana.
Recreational Activity: Swimming. With so many gorgeous beaches, going into the water is hard to resist!.
Restaurant: Captain Cook’s. This is an excellent seafood restaurant right on El Cortecito beach. It’s a really scenic al fresco dining experience. They specialize in lobster – I highly recommend it.
Local Tour: ATV four-wheeling. It combines a highway and off-road excusion that offers great scenery along with some entertaining trail adventures that will elevate your adrenaline.
Local Event: Carnaval de la Vega. I think this is the best of the Dominican Republic’s many carnival celebrations in February. It features great costumes (with lots of mostly humorous Devil masks), colorful parade floats, lots of music and many masked dance groups.
Catedral Primada de America (First Cathedral in Americas)
This impressive basilica, set on the South side of Parque Colon, was completed in 1540 and was the first cathedral built in the Americas. It remains intact in spite the passing of time and maintains the original features from the 16th century; it continues to serve as a place of worship.
The original Mahogany doors lead to the silver altar and a painting of the Virgin Mary from 1520. Although the real name is Basilica Catedral de Santa Maria la Menor, tourist maps list this site as Catedral Primada de América.
Don Domingo Terminal
Located to the West of the city, Don Diego Terminal is a seaport that features a contemporary, functional design that takes advantage of natural light; once you disembark and within walking distance, you’ll have easy access to the colonial part of city.
Plaza España is a large square located at the edge of the historic center. It is found near the Ozama River. It is mostly used as a venue for events and public gatherings.
Now, if what you want is to sit outdoors and sip a coffee under a tree, around the park there are a number of restaurants with outdoor dining. Tour guides often hang out in the vicinity of the cafés and approach visitors to offer them a guided tour. Not far from here is the citadel of Columbus.
Drive about 40 minutes East of Santo Domingo and you will find a quaint town with white sand beaches.
The town is known for its coral reef and a sandbar in a protected bay with turquoise waters that never go above your waist, which makes it ideal for snorkeling or diving. The restaurants offer authentic, delicious seafood.
It is a symbol of Santo Domingo. Built in 1502, the fort served the military interests of Spain, England, France, Haiti, Gran Colombia, and the U.S. Most of the visitors agree that the views offer a great backdrop to take pictures.
Columbus Citadel (Alcazar de Colon)
Looking for a museum? Alcazar de Colon is the best option to learn about our history.
This gothic style museum was the home of Diego Columbus, son of Christopher Columbus, the man who discovered the American continent.
It was built to commemorate Dominican independence. The square is lined with busts that lead to the Altar de la Patria (Homeland altar) and to a mausoleum where the founders of the Dominican Republic are laid to rest.
Las Americas International Airport
Las Americas International Airport (SDQ), also known as José Francisco Peña Gomez Airport, is 30 minutes from the capital city of Santo Domingo and very close to the tourist areas of Boca Chica and Juan Dolio.
Malecon (Promenade) at Night
When was the last time you took a pleasant walk along a promenade? This boardwalk is the meeting point for most events such as live concerts, parades, and family get togethers. The sunsets over the ocean are a magnet since they are simply breathtaking.
Time for a wardrobe change? Then, let's go shopping along El Conde street. On both sides of the street and the cross streets, you will find a variety of boutiques and reasonably priced stores.
Also, if you are looking for amber and larimar, this is the place!.
Excellent job! Great partners and friends thanks! Laura is amazing.
Laura thank you and your team for such a wonderful trip! This was a by far your best trip yet! I’ve absolutely loved working with you! We will be back and asking for you very soon.
Laura and the entire team did a great job.
The client was thrilled and your team made me and MTI Events look fabulous. So for that – I thank you and Karen Crew. Your should be very proud of your team there. They handled every change and challenge I gave them. As always it is great to partner with such a professional team.
Laura is an exceptional person, her heart is in the right place. She strives for excellence. I would encourage her to communicate any foreseeable challenges to the client — always better to be privy in advance. I KNOW she will head one of IVI’s divisions in the future.
Challenges with décor first event, firework expectations Laura and her IVI team were wonderful to work with; always striving to exceed, helpful and dedicated to serving the client and its attendees.
La verdad son impecables y tenerlos como proveedores estratégicos, nos ayudará a que nuestros eventos están garantizados en calidad y servicio. Esperemos pronto volver a vernos.
Muchas gracias a los 3 por tan cordial bienvenida a vuestro país.