BeirutNightLife.com and VIRTUOZITY Magazine in collaboration with PingDubai.com, had the exclusive opportunity to travel with Davidoff Cigars to the master craft of cigar making in the Dominican Republic. It is a paradise, a pearl in the midst of the ocean, it is the beating heart of the Caribbean.
In this series of “The Art of Cigar Making” from the Dominican Republic you will hear the stories of how to enjoy the taste, the journey of tobacco, and the people who grew it. Santo Domingo a city full of culture and tradition from colonial era till present days.
After a 26 hour trip the excitement was there since we do no yet know what is awaiting us except the busy schedule prepared and shared with us, and the warm welcome by the lovely people from Davidoff who made sure we are well received at the airport Suzy, Christian and Vincent. The visit was very promising starting the shuttle drive where the sea is on one side highway and coconut trees and greenery on the other side on the way to the Nicolas de Ovando hotel. A long breathtaking corniche where locals hang out, young couples and tourists enjoying the cool breeze, cafes with bamboo tents, lounges and bars on the other side.
We finally reached the Nicolas de Ovando hotel by Sofitel. A very warm welcome before we hit El Patio for dinner and enjoy a Gignates Poro Doro Cigar in the cool breeze. The hotel is an old Palace, with nice old design rooms, caribbean style decoration and old wood style ceiling. This old castle is located on top of an old fortress, where you can enjoy different big spaces inside. We were not patient enough to wait for the next day so, so we woke up early to discover the city before the sunrise and of course not to miss the Caribbean sunrise..
Vincent Krembel Davidoff, Global Brand Ambassador, took us to discover the historical part of Santo Domingo after breakfast. Colombus plaza, Plaza D’espagna, an OLD jesuite church which was transformed to a museum, to a local market, and the highlight of this tour was the location where the ALPACINO The God Father scene was shot.
Back to the hotel and our bus was ready to drive us to Puerto Plata where the Cigar action starts. A quick stop for a lunch at Tipico BONAO in the city of BONAO, where we enjoyed a lovely traditional food from salads with fresh vegetables, to enjoying special made pork with a magic dressing. It was heavily raining now, but who can leave without enjoying another cigar this time the shorto perfecto which has a unique progress and taste, and continue our road trip to Puerto Plata. The key word for this trip was the scenery with heavy tropical rains, nice smooth roads with greenery on both sides.
So our Davidoff Cigars tobacco journey began with a great base, the Nicolas de Ovando hotel, but still a lot more to come in this five day heavenly trip.
Stay tuned for episode 2, where we will visit the Jicome fields and learn more abut the cigar plantation and fermentation process….
We are just getting started
For more photos of the old city, click on the link below: