Caribbean Hotel & Tourism
Investment Conference Takes Place In Puerto Rico, May 4-6, 2010
CORAL GABLES, FL (April 12, 2010) – It is with great pleasure that the
Caribbean Hotel & Tourism Association (CHTA) will recognize the accomplishments
of Frank and Haydee Rainieri of Puntacana Resort & Club, Punta Cana,
Dominican Republic, with the Bill Bissell Lifetime Achievement Award.
The award will be presented on May 5 at the Caribbean Hotel & Tourism
Investment Conference (CHTIC 2010) in San Juan, Puerto Rico.
The Bill Bissell Lifetime Achievement Award is presented to individuals
who have made a difference in the industry through their actions, contributions
and great lifetime accomplishments in the Caribbean and beyond.
“Frank and Haydee’s impact on Caribbean tourism – as well as their work
on sustainability issues, social reform and education – is well known and
is deserving of the entire region’s respect,” said Enrique De Marchena
Kaluche, President of CHTA.
“As a fellow Dominican, however, I feel a special affinity for the Rainieris
as they’ve played an integral role in shaping the Dominican Republic into
one of the Caribbean’s premiere tourism destinations with Puntacana Resort
& Club remaining one of our country’s most notable luxury resorts,”
added De Marchena.
“The Caribbean owes a huge debt of gratitude to Frank Rainieri who founded
the Caribbean Alliance for Sustainable Tourism (CAST) and served as our
chairman for the first several years,” said Sir Royston O. Hopkin, KCMG,
CAST’s current chairman.
“Likewise, Haydee is a distinguished ambassador of Caribbean tourism
and an outspoken advocate on numerous issues central to our development
and social progress,” noted Hopkin. “Working alongside the Rainieris has
been a pleasure.”
Frank Rainieri is a renowned leader and visionary in the Dominican Republic
and the Greater Caribbean. He is credited with pioneering the Punta Cana
region’s tourism product and developing Puntacana Resort & Club from
10 small bungalows in 1971 into one of the most exclusive and elegant tourist
retreats in present day Dominican Republic.
His contributions have resulted in a myriad of recognitions locally
and internationally, including the high distinction of the Presidential
Citation Award, presented in 1985 by U.S. President Ronald Reagan. In that
same year, he was selected by the United Nations to serve as a representative
for the Dominican Republic in a seminar for Young Entrepreneurs of Developing
Countries. In 1999, he was distinguished as Caribbean Hotelier of the Year
Frank currently serves on the Board for the American Chamber of Commerce
as well as ASONAHORES (Dominican Republic’s National Association of Hotels
and Restaurants) and CAST (an organization he is credited with founding).
He is also an active member of the Young Presidents’ Organization (YPO)
and the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI), through which he’s been extremely
supportive of Haitian relief efforts.
|Haydee Rainieri first arrived on
the scene representing the Dominican Republic as Miss Dominican Republic
at the Miss World International pageant, where she went on to receive the
coveted title of Miss Americas in Argentina. Since then, she’s served as
a faithful ambassador for the Dominican Republic and Caribbean tourism
She received her undergraduate degree in Physics cum laude at the National
University Pedro Henríquez Ureña, where she later served
on the academic staff.
During her professional career, she worked as producer and anchorwoman
for the television program Frente a Frente next to renowned journalist
Mario Rivadulla. She also served as Director for the Public Relations Division
of the National Theater of the Dominican Republic, as well as Treasurer
for the Board of Directors of the American Chamber of Commerce.
Haydee was distinguished by United States Junior Chamber (Jaycees) in
1982 with the Silver Supreme Award for Outstanding Youths. In 1994, she
received the Grand Award from ASONAHORES.
She is also an outspoken advocate for education as a member of EDUCA
(a non-governmental organization founded by entrepreneurs committed to
improving the quality of education in the Dominican Republic) since 1996.
She also served as Director of APEC (Action in Favor of Education and Culture,
In 1987, Haydee Rainieri joined Grupo Puntacana, the managing company
behind Puntacana Resort & Club, where she now serves as Vice President
of Hospitality and Human Resources. She is also the current President of
the ASONAHORES, a role she’s held since 2008, as well as the current 4th
Vice President of the CHTA Board of Directors.
Frank and Haydee Rainieri married in 1973 and have three children and
Taking place at the Puerto Rico Convention Center in San Juan, May 4-6,
2010, CHTIC will be hosted by the Caribbean Hotel & Tourism Association
(CHTA), Puerto Rico Tourism Company (PRTC), Puerto Rico Hotel & Tourism
Association (PRHTA) and Puerto Rico Convention Bureau (PRCB).
With uncertainty looming in the tourism industry despite the fact that
RevPAR (revenue per available room) is on the rise, tourism officials and
executives in the Caribbean – as well as financial entities invested in
the region’s development – are saying the Caribbean Hotel & Tourism
Investment Conference (CHTIC 2010) could not be more appropriately timed.
“We have been seeing moderate improvement in the performance of Caribbean
tourism over the last year, which makes this the opportune time for a big
thrust in development in preparation for a full return to profitability
for our hospitality sector,” said De Marchena.
History Puntacana Resort & Club
In 1969, a group of American investors acquired a 58-million square
meter lot equivalent to 48 square kilometers of pure jungle on the east
coast of the Dominican Republic. Being almost rectangular in shape, this
roadless lot contained approximately 10 seashore kilometers with numerous
exotic white-sand beaches and thousands of coconut trees.
Joining them some time afterwards was a group of local investors headed
by entrepreneur Frank R. Rainieri who had the vision to make use of the
lot for tourism development. Climate in the area fluctuates between 70
and 90 degrees Fahrenheit all year round with less than 800 millimeters
of annual rainfall. In 1968, UNESCO declared these beaches as truly exceptional
and globally unique for their fine white sand, crystalline waters and coral
Managed by Dominican Frank R. Rainieri and American Theodore W. Kheel,
the Compañía de Desarrollo Turístico Residencial e
Industrial S.A. (CODDETREISA), known today as GRUPO PUNTACANA S.A., began
development of the lot in 1971 with the launching of a small hotel known
as the Punta Cana Club. It had 10 two-room villas, a Clubhouse, a small
town for employees, a power plant, and a basic aircraft runway. At full
capacity this hotel could accommodate 40 guests. It demonstrated that the
property had great potential and in 1978 Club Mediterrané of Paris
France started the construction of the first 350-room hotel.
On the same year, the Dominican Government started the construction
of the first access road to connect Punta Cana with the country's road
network, discovering the inconvenience of having to travel four hours to
arrive to the nearest airport located in Santo Domingo. This enabled the
construction of the Punta Cana International Airport. After an eight-year
battle with three different governments, authorization was finally obtained
for the construction of the first private international airport in the
country. Construction started in 1982 and was finished in 1984 with the
first international flight coming from San Juan Puerto Rico in a twin turbo
Due to its isolated location and lack of public facilities from the
Dominican Government, GRUPO PUNTACANA S.A. took upon itself the responsibility
to solve and maintain all facilities required for proper operation. Access
roads, security, waterworks, electricity, garbage disposal, waste disposal
and schools are all operable through projects and subsidiary corporations
of GRUPO PUNTACANA. Since 1997 the owners of GRUPO PUNTACANA are Theodore
W. Kheel, Frank R. Rainieri, Julio Iglesias and Oscar de la Renta. (http://www.puntacana.com)
“But we’re not quite there yet, which is why CHTIC 2010 is of the utmost
importance to lenders, developers, hoteliers and others who stand to gain
much during this precarious moment and would benefit greatly from the predictions
of some of the industry’s best and brightest,” he added.
Presentations by the World Tourism Organization, the World Travel &
Tourism Council, Smith Travel Research, KPMG and others will provide delegates
with a global perspective of the tourism industry and how the Caribbean
The extensive list of speakers also includes Ministers of Tourism, Chief
Executives of major hotel brands and a host of expert panelists for the
diverse program which includes workshops on the economics of being green,
the effect of national infrastructure on the tourism industry and, for
the first time this year, a panel session and workshop on Cuba featuring
Emily Morris who writes for the Economist Intelligence Unit on the subject.
Limited sponsorship opportunities are now available for this prestigious
event. Sponsors will be highlighted throughout the entire conference, as
well as in CHTA’s marketing and public relations activities leading up
to and following the event. The Sponsors’ Exhibit will also afford direct
contact with representatives of sponsoring companies and will be open throughout
CHTIC sponsors currently confirmed include FirstCaribbean International
Bank, Interval International, LG Electronics and MasterCard on the Patron
Sponsorship level, as well as Platinum Sponsors GreenbergTraurig, KPMG,
OBM International and RCI.
Gold sponsors include American Resort Development Association (ARDA),
ACLA Works, AMS Construction (Aireko), Best Western, Boyken International,
Choice Hotels International, Eventstar, Green Globe Certification, Robb
& Stucky Hospitality, Tourism Development Company and VingCard Elsafe.
Media sponsors include Lodging Hospitality and ARDA Devevelopments.
Supporters include Business Monitor International, GlobalHotelNetwork.com
CHTIC was founded by CHTA and CTO in 1997 with the specific objectives
of improving the tourism investment and operating climate in the Caribbean,
raising awareness of development opportunities and stimulating a continuing
flow of equity and loan capital into the region.
For more information on CHTIC 2010 – including sponsorship opportunities
– please contact CHTA at 305-443-3040, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
or visit http://caribbeanhotelandtourism.com/InvestmentConference.php.
Caribbean Hotel & Tourism Association
The Caribbean Hotel & Tourism Association (CHTA) facilitates the
full potential of the Caribbean hotel and tourism industry by serving members’
needs and building partnerships in a socially responsible and sustainable
manner. CHTA was founded in 1962; it is the voice of the Caribbean
hospitality industry for the development of the region in the highly competitive
and sophisticated environment of international tourism. Today, tourism
is widely recognized as a pivotal industry in the economy of the region
– and CHTA functions as the common denominator for this industry in a region
of diverse nationalities, languages and styles, identifying mutual problems
and marshalling the resources of the active and allied members to devise
solutions. CHTA represents all facets of the hospitality industry with
more than 725 member hotels and 525 allied members.
For more information, visit http://www.caribbeanhotelandtourism.com.