On March 3rd, during the event
Las Terrenas City of God, the people of Las Terrenas received as unexpected news the imminent start of the work of the Golf Course.
On March 18th, the Engineer Maximino BRITO LAZALA, Head of Private Investment Fund for the development of Las Terrenas, President of the Caribbean Investment firm Realty Inc. and Co- president of Century Caribbean Global Venture LLC, received Sylvain MAUFRAIS to give an interview and offer some clarification on the work being done in Las Terrenas with the project of Golf Course. This allowed us to realize that the project is much wider than the Golf course of Las Terrenas and covers the development of the people…
What are the priorities to develop a tourist area like Las Terrenas ?
The first priority is that we need to create a master plan of tourism development in Las Terrenas based on all the studies that have been made, of all the actions that have been made, do a revision of o the normative such as tourism and environment. That master plan must have a Director Plan, meaning that when the master plan has been made, and the use of floor in Las Terrenas normalizes, there has to be a great investment in the municipal City Hall, to create a great department of Urban Planning, but at the same time, a concent needs to be made with everyone who lives in Las Terrenas on all levels, from business people in the highest business level to the medium to small companies, hotels, tradespeople, the towns people in general so that in that consentiment we can establish a level of development that will allow it to be approved by tourism, environmental protection, public services, INAPA, the electric/power corporation, and the office of Urban Planning, so that everything that is done from there on may be done in that specific order.
The first priority is that we need to create a master plan of tourism development in Las Terrenas
That will give us public, national and worldly image of character o order, this will give us an image that every investment that comes in will be guaranteed because there won't be any caos, or rivalry. The level o environment that is needed will be defined, that's going to define how all the traffic will be managed, that will define how the part that has to do with the beach will be managed.
For example, we have here a very serious problem, with the sanitary of the black waters.
For example, we have here a very serious problem, with the sanitary of the black waters. Why do we have this problem ? Normally, my profession is civil engineer, when a sewage system of a town is made, it is done in consideration with the current population of the town and with the prevision of how many people it will have in 10, 15, or 20 years. Now, what happens in a town like Las Terrenas ? you can predict that when that drainage sewage system was made there might have been 18 or 17 thousand people and you could say, well, in 20 years this could be 25 thousand, or 30 thousand.
However, since this is a tourist town where sometimes you might not find vacancy, and there is a great deal of population that comes in, that amount in addition to the existing population, plus the people that work here from out of town, plus the tourists that come in, they overpass the limit of that design. Thats why, I think one of the tasks, one of the first task is to build a sewage system projected towards 50 years which should have suficent capacity to keep on adding and extending treatment plants down water of the system and there fore leading away from town, because what we have now is a very delicate situation because, the treatment plant is very near or even too close to the businesses and touristic area of the town, so that is one of the priorities.
Now, whats the problem behind all that ?
The problem is, who pays for all those investments ? We have to create consciousness, and we are going to give a very fundamental example, that when you have a project in hand you not only have to invest in the parameters of your project. You came here to build a hotel of 500 or 1000 rooms, you can't only think on building the 500 or 1000 bedrooms, you have to invest in all that is around as well, in the whole town.
So, thats the first thing we have to do.
The second thing, after we have the Master plan and the director plan, who will execute that with a character of equity, doubt, in order and participating conciously is resolve the electric problem.
There is a conflict that needs to be resolved.
The rights of the citizen Jacques Dartout have to be respected, the rights of his associate, or original associate Jose Orsini, also need to be respected. And I believe since they have tried to solve their differences in court, and haven't succeeded, I think that the best thing that needs to be done is generate an investment, to turn that company into a cooperative electric company. One that is property of all the consumers, as it was done with the rural electric companies in United States, and Italy, and that the share holders of that company, may be indemnified. Because in the situation that the company is now, and the way the government have faced the problem, In one hand the rights of Mr. Jacques Dartout have been disrespected, and on the other hand, Mr. Orsini has been treated in a non adequate manner. Why ? Because Mr. Orsini doesn't have the capacity anymore with what is being generated by that company, to make the changes that it needs to have done, to have that company be the vanguard of the new Las Terrenas that will grow.
That is a task that can only be solved by a powerful gentlemen called Mr. Money.
We can, and are in the condition to canalize resources and asociate it with the local business sector in a joint action, may produce a purchase of all the shares of that company and turn them into an electric cooperative. That's going to guarantee the town of Las Terrenas energy for ever, because there comes the renewable electricity, and no one is going to steel from themselves, and they know that the company is going to generate a dividend that is going to come to them, if that gets organized correctly, that's going to be something of prestige.
So the rights of Jacques Dartout have to be respected, as well as the rights of Jose Orsini. Nothing good can come from hate. Hate, doesn't produce any good. Any company that is fed by hate, ends up bad. I await the day when they will give themselves a hug, Jacques Dartout and Jose Osiris, when the town recognizes them both as the pioneers to bring electric energy to Las Terrenas.
With this I'm saying I'm not taking preference for either one or the other, because everybody knows that Jacques Dartout counts with my absolute support, as well as the support of the investors that are here, because in that war that was seen, and in that battle, he was the one with the capacity to convince us to come here to Las Terrenas, but remember that Osiris has a family name that weighs a lot, which is voice, and overall deserves consideration and respect, and deserves at his age to be treated with love. With all the love in the world, Town of Las Terrenas, open your minds and your understanding, so that the company Luz y Fuerza turns into an electric Cooperative.
There is a lot of scientists living here, and very prepared people that when you call them they would come, and the capital is there, the only thing is they got to have the will to sell the shares to make of that company a new company. If they stay, than the government needs to look for a new way to treat them. because each time someone does one of those circuits of conflicts on the newspapers, its against the town of Las Terrenas and the touristic town.
I believe we should preserve the environment with a Master Plan, that contains all normative, we have to guarantee the electric energy, but overall make the Town o Las Terrenas a Destiny to attract people of great consumption, so that tourists of great wealth come to Las Terrenas and provide an equitative development.
But most important of all there are two very important groups, but everyone is only focusing on the second group, the travelers that are going to come here, and are putting aside the ones that reside here.
There has to be an integration in a touristic level of the community. There is an established model of what is tourism of valley.
For example, we have the privilege of having the best chef of Las Terrenas, the greatest Chef master as Joseline would say, Maria. Her mother, defied her and said that she cooks better than her, and I said, don't worry, we're going to do a project with you so that she can have the gourmet kitchen of Samana.
We have a lot of talent here, what we have to do is give them an opportunity, we have to let them participate. There are a lot of foreigners, that love Las Terrenas, that don't have a capital to invest, but have the industrial capital which is their knowledge.
There are a lot of things that we can do here.
When I talk like this, there are alot who will agree and come to union with my words, others will moderate themselves from doing so. For one reason or the other, if Las Terrenas moves forward, and we can make a logic model out of this piece of land to generate wealth, that will invade all of the republic, then it doesn't matter whether there are bad desires, or that some don't accept us, We accept them with the same love of the ones that will applaud.
We're going to work together and with Gods help, we'll make Las Terrenas the number 1 touristic area of all Dominican Republic and Caribbean. The idea is not to have alot of rooms, or bring a lot of tourists, but to bring tourists that will spend enough that with little rooms and little tourists we generate much more wealthiness to distribute within the Terreners, and also so that businessmen can reach a development Level, that can be reflected in the development of the Dominican Republic.
The golf of Las Terrenas will be the biggest in the region of Samana, what are the stages of the realization, how many years will this last ? and How many jobs will it generate ?
The golf of Las Terrenas will not only be the biggest in the region of Samana, our purpose is to turn Las Terrenas into the golf capital of the Caribbean.
When I say this, a town that has waited for so long to see that golf course finished, wouldn't understand with clarity what we are doing here. in this area, this wounderful location, that we, that god has allowed us to have. From Loma Bonita.
The golf of Las Terrenas will not only be the biggest in the region of Samana, our purpose is to turn Las Terrenas into the golf capital of the Caribbean
We are in 4 stages of work, we're done with the first cycle which was the institutional cycle, we already determined how we are going to focus the work that we are going to do for the development of Las Terrenas, for everything that we will do in Las Terrenas, Sanchez and the province of Samana.
We've chosen the strategic local allies, and established a model that will allow for as long as there is a plummer in/from Las Terrenas, we will not bring one from outside, as long as there is a terrener that can do electric work, there will be no other coming in from outside, as long as there is a terrener that can be waitress, none will be brought in from outside.
one of the fundamental purposes is that the town of Las Terrenas be the subject of their development, (…) because without the integration of the towns people of Las Terrenas there won't be a touristic development
As long as there is an accountant, an engineer, a lawyer from Las Terrenas, we will give preference, not only individually, but we have also started to recruit the local companies, in the areas that we will be developing, because the objective, one of the fundamental purposes is that the town of Las Terrenas be the subject of their development. There won't be a touristic development if without the integration of the towns people of Las Terrenas.
It's not to leave the town to motoconcho, its not to leave them the waitresses who are noble, not only leave the young girls the option of prostitution or any other, but create a job with dignity, and that the businessmen, either born in Las Terrenas or adopted by Las Terrenas, participate in the new Terrenas. That cycle is complete, we are now in the second cycle, which is the acquiring of the land that is known as the golf course.
There we have the support of two excellent French guys, that entertain me every morning when they get there, because there isn't a day that they don´t have an interesting story. The great Jacques Dartout, and Rene Techer, they are the main figure that have been working with us, and helping us in the process of accuireing the golf course, which is the second cycle.
The third cycle is the purchasing of properties all around the golf camp land.
There have been a group of very important transactions which have given a lot of people that had properties, but didn't have a perspective of the vision that is seen now, that Las Terrenas is going downhill, they now have the opportunity to sell their properties at a great price, but also immediately participate in the New Terrenas, there are only 2 properties left so that we can finish the third Cycle.
As soon as we complete the agreement we have made with them, we have emitted a primary note of payment, to make a banking agreement that states that as soon as all those properties have been verified to have their titles correctly, they will receive their money. That's the third cycle.
We spoke about the first cycle which was the institutional part, our office, the house of power that is there at the beach, which is going to be our CDE energy, that is a project that is almost finished. We are going to have some other work offices or stations.
We already have the companies that will be coming in directly which will be established here with us. Local companies from Dominican Republic as well as well as outside the country, which will be with us full time. We have a group of high level executives who will gradually be arriving, and in time we will have Mr. Sergio Pino, who is a preponderant figure of all we are doing and his full team.
The fourth Cycle is the great surprise that we have for Las Terrenas, we are moving and working on a strategic alliance with the current golf course that we have here now, with the new golf course that we will be adding to that one, with the new course of 9 additional holes, and at least three other golf courses that we will project and that we will begin shortly in the surroundings of the boulevard, to make an strategic alliance with the main center of world golf championships o United States.
I´ll let your imagination float to find out who they are.
With that action only on paper, we have another immediate action, and that is to turn Las Terrenas in a global brand, but this will mean that Las Terrenas will be a Global Destination.
When we say, ¨Turn Las Terrenas in a Global Brand and in a Global Destination¨its not an individual action of ours, it is recognizing the effort of all who have done what we have got up to now, even the things that could have been better done, are actions that have to be acknowledged.
It is our duty to offer absolute support to hotels, the restaurant owners, to small business owners, to all touristic initiatives that we have here, to the visionaries who have fought for the preservation of environment, respecting the authorities, meaning that we are not coming in now to tell the people how water enters a coconut, because that is a task that can´t be done individually, it has to be recognizing what already exists.
Now, I was in the inauguration of the Anacaona Library, which is in the same plaza of Lindo Supermarket, and we were invited by Mr. Jose Bourget.
A few musicians arrived and I asked them, if there is a Jazz Band in Las Terrenas, they say, no, we can´t live of being musicians, because when the high season is gone we won´t have a job anymore.
Whats happening is that there are good things that bring difficulties. The boulevard has made possible for everyone to get to Las Terrenas much faster, but that has brought as consequence that the tourism, people, and I´ll say this with an attitude of reflection, and I speak in a humble way, its a business.
So when you say tourism, sun, beach perfect, sand, sunsets, its a business.
As a business, if you don´t manage it correctly, if you don´t manage it correctly, the business can go into ruins. When we talk about Las Terrenas as a worldly Brand, it means that it will turn into a worldly destination, but we don´t have the things that are needed in a worldly destination.
Doing that, will implicate that we have to stop the poorness in Las Terrenas
I have the honor to have in my house a universal citizen, Renato Bartolone, he´s the owner of the restaurant Marco Polo in Paris, restaurant that is considered one of the Italian restaurants of highest level in Paris, but its not a present that costs me 300 pesos, I would love to have a store here that sells fine gifts, to have a Commercial Plaza, a Theater where we could see the same shows that I see on Broadway in New York, that there were five star, six star hotels.
To do that will mean that we have to stop arravalization in Las Terrenas. Why do we need to stop arravalization in Las Terrenas ? Because you are asking me in what time will we see success.
I hope to conclude in this month, we hope to finish in this month, the phase of cycle 2, meaning the acquisition of the golf course, and I hope that we can come to an agreement with all of that.
No matter how hard our efforts are, we will not see any benefits before a year, its a true reality. Even though the course is already started, but ten years have passed without having anything done, its a masterpiece of land that with the passing of many waters, and everything, many of the things that were traced ten years ago have been erased.
If we do not do something quick and tourists that spend very little keep coming to Las Terrenas, and renting villas for 10 or 15 people, and bringing in the food that they are going to eat, in those dates, the main emblematic businesses will not be able to sustain themselves.
So, what is left for the town ? What's left is that the town will descend. But not only that, that type o tourist many times promotes other values.
So what are we going to do ?
We will take the initiative, which I will say clearly: we pretend in a definite matter, to take in contract at least 75% of all occupation possible in Las Terrenas, We are talking about 1500 units of hotels, we´re talking that between villas in one way or another add up to 4 hundred thousand units.
I we take 75% and leave 25% free, we will bring in the tourists that we want to have here, in the flights that will be stopped now in May, then will come the private flights.
We are going to promote family tourism, the one that spends and doesn't bring anti values.
So whats going to happen ? Its not that we don´t want the people that don't have resources participate, but we canñt give out our main resourses, to get arrabalized, fill everything with trash, destroy the possibilities of this potential income fountain. Not only of Las Terrenas, but of the province of Samana and the country get lost becuase you don´t have the capacity to notice that tourism is a Business, and as business we have to find rentability to be competitive.
There isn't enough hand labor in Las Terrenas to fill all the spaces of employment were going to offer
This will employ many people. Just when we start the construction of the golf course, the wide range that we are going to do, the construction of the first Riccarton Hotel in the Dominican Republic - and I say this with no fear, because Ron Farl is best friends with the Mariott Chain owner, and they are the ones that can make this happen, and I'm certain that like others who have come to Las Terrenas, they are going to want to do this. there isn't enough workers in Las Terrenas for the amount of jobs we are going to offer.
I'll give you an advise, and sometimes I'm a financial advisor for some people, whoever want to make money in a decent way, come invest in Las Terrenas, because what has been done til now, which is good, will get much better, and we will battle with the errors, not with accusations nor philosophy, not with riots, nor conflicts, but bringing love and unity, because what we are thinking and will accomplish is that as an investment to purchase the golf course, and the adjacent properties, we're going to add to that so that the sum of all the studies that have been done of Las Terrenas, and what it should be, plus the vision that we are bringing, with the companies and specially with the companies that I mentioned of Land Planners, we'll do a projection of Las Terrenas interesting enough to make a change.
I assure you that the first part will not be less than ten million Dollars, a well organized ten million dollars can unrabalize the river, but without hitting the people that live there, but developing a project of private housing, and buying from them, so that they can buy with what they bought. so they can honor the ones who hae faught for the river, we've got to give Jose Bourget, we have to give him an opportunity to put in practice his ideas with money in his hands.
I would like to clear something that people have misinterpreted. At this moment the person that is in charge of directing the City Hall and District of Las Terrenas is Dr. Mariana Vanderhorst Galvan. We can not wait until the elections pass on the 15th of May, or til the 17th when the new Mayor or herself be sworn in to start acting. We have to work with the authorities, and she is the one that step forward.
What happened. She gave, the authority and power that she had, she put in favor of Las Terrenas. She approached us, she approached the investors, she made a proposal and the proposal was approved. So, we are going to be working with Mariana Vanderhorst because she is the mayor, but if the citizens of Las Terrenas sovereignly understand that her adverse or other candidates that also have the merit to do so, are the ones that need to be elected, than we will also work with them.
Terreners that are watching me, don't believe me for what I'm saying, Pay attention and watch what we are doing and what we will do
Meanwhile, we are watching out for ourselves, because we are in the middle of Elections and Political Campaigns, so any action we take might be interpreted as if we have a favorite candidate. We need to respect the Law, that's why we invited the chief of Las Terrenas police to this house we had dinner with a group of special guests and we acknowledge for the work that he is doing, and we will respect the authorities, we are going to meet with the aldermen, we will show them the vision we have, but we can't wait til the 17th of august. That's impossible, to ask us for that would be exterminate the possibility of the development of Las Terrenas, because, in the capital market, time is worth much more, very much more than money.
So Terreners, that are watching, don't believe me for what I say, Pay attention, and see what we are doing and what we are going to do.
We will build together a new Las Terrenas
We will build together a new Las Terrenas, we will make out of this beautiful space a huge poetry, where love will dwell in its true magnitude, and hate will be erased, where demagogy will not fit in, nor corruption, nor prostitution, or drugs, or lies and we will make it clear to all those who come to take money out of here, will have to leave a quota for every kid with no shoes, in each mother that needs a job, in each father that needs a jon, in the sands, in the greens and in the beautiful sunsets.
Let everybody that wants to take money from here, that they will have to leave a cuota
Have no doubt that the decision we have made is definite. We are personal friends with the President of the Dominican Republic, but we didn't come with the seal of the National Palace, or of the Government Party, we came conscious that we have to do something that transcends, and Las Terrenas will be the first touristic pole of the Dominican Republic for luxury tourism.
Las Terrenas will be the first touristic pole of the Dominican Republic for luxury tourism
We shall see all the millionaire and multi millionaire Jews come vacation in Las Terrenas. We'll see the Japanese, we'll see the different groups of United States, and we'll see family tourists, and together we will all benefit in the name of God that created earth and heavens.
Thank you for this opportunity.
We will stay firm doing gods perfect will, which is work for the patriot and work for our selves.
Las Terrenas Live, Coordinator Interview Lic. Lucie Sabine Houdayer Descotes, el 04.15.16
I lived in Las Terrenas for 6 years and continue to visit. These articles on the Golf development are interesting but not filled with anything concrete. It is fine to have an overall development plan but come on stop the bs. It's simple. You have a plan to complete the golf course. Concentrate on this and get it done otherwise you will still be talking about this ten years from now. The structure of Las Terrenas is in place. It is a small beach community. I don't think anyone wants to see this place become the next Cancun. That is not where LT's allure is centered. Golf would be a nice draw for all of the local hotels to be able to offer. First thing is that you need direct flights from NYC area into El Catey Airport. Get crackin on at least a 9 hole course and then expand it as golf interest grows. Please, please stop all the nonsense and making of this development complicated. Build it and they will come.
Steven Seft - United States - 03-27-2017
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