DATE Concludes, Delegates Say Show Was a Success

PUNTA CANA, Dominican Republic—Travel Agent was on site Thursday as the Dominican Annual Tourism Exchange (DATE) wrapped up at the Barcelo Bavaro Convention Center. DATE, which kicked off April 1, drew nearly 60 buyer companies and about 200 individual buyers.

The opening reception of DATE was also the opening night of the all-inclusive Edenh Real Arena, where the conference’s opening night was held. Travel Agent was impressed with this property after a site inspection of its more than 600 rooms. Most impressive was the Master Suite, which has two separate rooms, an open bar and, maybe, the room’s best feature, an outdoor bath. The room rate is $450 per person. Visit www.edenh-realarena.com.

Perhaps the biggest news from the last day of DATE came from Sol Melia, which owns a chain of hotels in Mexico and the Caribbean. The company announced that its Paradisus Punta Cana property recently began work on the addition of 200 rooms, which are expected to be completed as early as December. (We think that time frame is a bit too optimistic for a project of this magnitude.) The smallest of the rooms will be 75 square feet and about 30 of these rooms will have swim-up access from the pool. Visit www.paradisusresorts.travel. (JP)

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