Then & Now / Antes & Ahora – Cine Capitolio is now Capitolio Market Place.
Cine Capitolio was built in 1925 by Juan Bautista del Toro, it was the first cinema / movie theater in the Dominican Republic.
The theater first showed silent movies, the first was “Los Enemigos de la Mujer”, then progressed to playing “talkies”. When this occurred they lost many movie goers because most of the films were in English. Finally, they presented the Mexican produced film “Charros y Manolas”, the first film they showed in the Spanish language. The theater was back in business and the cine boomed until the mid 1960’s when they closed the doors for good.
Capitolio Market Place
The building, once named Columbus Plaza, is called Capitolio Market Place. This 3 level gift shop house different retail shops, gift shops, food and cigar vendors and also have a restaurant with a daily buffet.
The Palacete Vicini is a magnificent private home built in the art déco style by Czech designer architect Antonio Nechodojma in the 1920s. The beautiful little palace is nestled unassumingly on Calle 19 de Marzo in the Colonial Zone.
The entrance has 3 stairs leading to a small porch with two magnificent Ionic columns on either side. These columns are 12 meters tall and are three and a half meters wide at the base making them unique in shape and size. If you can get a glimpse into the front door and the entrance, there is a remarkable semicircular stairway leading to the second floor.
The ironwork adorning the windows and doors of the entrance are uncommon. Especially the magnificent metal lattice work on and above the entrance door.
The second level has a beautiful curved semicircular balcony, which has metal balusters adorned with spirals and 5 arched doors. The balcony is usually covered in beautiful flowers.
There are 4 narrow windows on the front of the home. The 2 bottom windows are unremarkable. The top windows on either side of the balcony are trimmed with Islamic style arches and have beautiful stained glass. This design is said to be the only one of its kind in the city of Santo Domingo.
Owners (2019) – Juan B. Vicini and Consuelo Marchenauso
Notes of interest –
*The Vicini family has Italian origins and as a whole, are the wealthiest family in the Dominican Republic according to Forbes Magazine.
*A Palacete is a luxurious mansion, villa or stately home that resembles a palace but is smaller.
Location of Palacete Vicini
#113 – 19 de Marzo between Arz. Nouel and Padre Billini, Ciudad Colonial, Santo Domingo.
Marcelo de Villalobos. Born in Seville in 1480 – Died in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic), 1526. He was part of the first Audience of Santo Domingo. He was one of the 3 original judges appointed by the Queen of Spain sent to the city of Santo Domingo. Villalobos ended up dying in debt to the city and the crown.
Marcelo de Villalobos was born in Seville around 1480, the son of Diego de Villalobos and Aldonza de Vera, where he studied law. On October 5, 1511, a Royal Provision, signed by Queen Doña Juana, created an Audiencia y Juzgado / Audience and Court on Hispaniola. He, Juan Ortiz de Matienzo and Lucas Vázquez de Ayllón, were appointed juez de Apelaciones de la dicha “Audiencia y Juzgado” / judge of Appeals of the said “Audience and Court”.
At the end of February 1512 Villalobos left for the Indies, taking with him nine men. After a fairly lengthy stay in the Canary Islands, he and his wife, noble lady, Isabel de Manrique arrived in Santo Domingo. They brought their many servants along. On July 9, 1512 the viceroy Diego Colón gave him possession on Santo Domingo.
Villalobos owned over two hundred Indians, which he used to work in the Cotuí mines. He gained his own home and herds of sheep and cows. He took part in the Slave Trade markets. For all of this and more, he was tried for abuse of power.
Villalobos died on July 25, 1526. He was deeply in debt to the city of Santo Domingo. The crown sought to collect from his family, but because of the devastating hurricane of October 6, 1526, they suspended all financial obligations for a year. Finally, on January 1528, the bailiff took possession, from his daughters, of the domicile of the Villalobos on behalf of His Majesty.
The house where Marcelo de Villalobos lived and died is located on Calle Arzobispo Meriño (near Mercedes and the Parking Garage) in the Colonial Zone. All that is there to recognize this home is a plaque on the wall.
The plaque on the wall of the home reads –
“Esta casa fue la morada del Licenciado Marcelo de Villalobos. Primer jues de la corte de apelacion en la isla de la Española y el nuevo mundo, en los comienzo del siglo XVI (1512 – 1526). Fray Vincente Rubio” /
This house was the abode of Mr. Marcelo de Villalobos. First judge of the court of appeal on the island of Hispaniola and the new world, at the beginning of the 16th century (1512 – 1526). Fray Vincente Rubio.
All You Want To Know About The Oldest City In The Americas
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