Category Archives: COLONIAL ZONE SIGHTS, MONUMENTS & PARKS

Contents of Category COLONIAL ZONE AND SANTO DOMINGO – SIGHTS & MONUMENTS

History of the old city of Santo Domingo now known as the Zona Colonial.

Colonial Zone Map

The Monuments, Museums and Sights of the Colonial City.

Buildings/Edificios – Monuments/Monumentos

Alcázar de Colón / Columbus Royal Palace
CASA CABALLERO
CASA DE BASTIDAS
CASA DE JUAN VILORIA
CASA DE LOS DÁVILA / CAPILLA DE LOS REMEDIOS
CASA DE LOS JESUITAS
CASA DE LAS GÁRGOLAS
CASA DE LOS MEDALLONES
CASA DEL CORDÓN
CASA DEL SACRAMENTO
CASA DEL TAPAO
CASA DEL TOSTADO
CASA DE LAS ACADEMIAS
CASA HERNÁN CORTÉS
CASA REALES AND MUSEO
COLEGIO DE GORJÓN
COLONIAL CULVERTS
COLUMBUS PALACE
MONTECINO THE MAN AND MONUMENT
PALACIO CONSISTORIAL
PALACIO DE BORGELLÁ
Palacete Vicini
Palacete Vicini
SUN DIAL
RUINS OF THE SAN FRANCISCO MONASTERY
RUINAS HOSPITAL SAN NICOLÁS DE BARI
Puerta de las Atarazans
Puerta de la Misericordia/ Gate of Mercy
Fuerte and Puerta San Diego

*Monuments from old html web site not yet added to the new site:

Altar de la Patria/ Altar of the Nation
Puerta el Conde/ Door of the Conde
Residencia de Ovando/ Governor Nicolás Ovando’s Residence

CHURCHES / IGLESIAS

CAPILLA DE LA TERCERA ORDEN DOMINICA
CASA DE LOS DÁVILA / CAPILLA DE LOS REMEDIOS
CATEDRAL DE SANTO DOMINGO
CHAPEL OF THE ROSARY
ERMITA DE SAN ANTÓN
IGLESIA ALTAGRACIA
IGLESIA – FUERTE SANTA BARBARA
IGLESIA LAS MERCEDES
IGLESIA LOS DOMINICOS
IGLESIA NUESTRA SEÑORA DEL CARMEN
IGLESIA REGINA ANGELORUM
IGLESIA SAN LAZARO
IGLESIA DE SANTA CLARA
LA CAPILLA DE SAN ANDRÉS
LAS MERCEDES
CAPILLA DE LA TERCERA ORDEN FRANCISCANA
IGLESIA DE SAN MIGUEL
PANTEÓN NACIONAL / NATIONAL PANTHEON

FORTS AND FORTALEZAS

Fortaleza Ozama
Inside The Walls of the Fortaleza Ozama
FUERTE CARINA AND ANGULO
FUERTE SAN GIL
IGLESIA – FUERTE SANTA BARBARA
FUERTE AND PARQUE SAN JOSÉ
FUERTE DE LA CONCEPCIÓN
FUERTE INVINCIBLE AND SAN DIEGO
Fuerte de San Anton
Fuerte San Francisco
Fuerte de San Miguel
Fuerte de San Lazaro
Fuerte de la Caridad

MUSEUMS-GALLERIES-THEATERS

CASA DE BASTIDAS – Trampolín, Museo Infantil
CASA DEL TOSTADO – Museo de la Familia Dominicano
CASA DE LOS MEDALLONES – Museo Numismático Dominicano
COLEGIO DE GORJÓN – Centro Cultural de España
CASA REALES AND MUSEO
COLUMBUS PALACE – MUSEO ALCAZAR DE COLÓN
Museo de la Porcelana/ Museum of Porcelain
Casa de Teatro

*Museos from old html web site not yet added to the new site:

Amber World Museum
Larimar Factory
Larimar Museum
Museo del Tabaco/ The Tobacco Museum
Museo Naval de las Atarazanas/ Naval Museum of the Atarazanas
Museo de Juan Pablo Duarte/ Museum of Juan Pablo Duarte
Memorial Museum of Dominican Resistance / El Museo Memorial de la Resistencia Dominicana
Museo del Ron y la Caña / Museum of Rum and Sugar Cane
Museum of Telecommunications / Museo de las Telecomunicaciones (CCT)

PARKS AND PLAZAS

CEIBA DE COLON
PARQUE PLAZA MARIA TRINIDAD SANCHEZ
PLAZA DE LA POESÍA
PARQUE PELLERANO CASTRO – PARQUE ROSADO
PARQUE DUARTE & THE MONUMENT
FUERTE AND PARQUE SAN JOSÉ
Playa Placer de los Estudios
Cementerio Nacional de la Avenida Independencia/ National Cemetery Avenue Independencia (Picture album – Cementerio Nacional)
PLAZA DE LA POESÍA
FUERTE AND PARQUE SAN JOSÉ
Playa Placer de los Estudios
Plaza Bartolomé de las Casas
Plazoleta Padre Billini
Plaza at Ermita de San Anton
Plaza María de Toledo

*Parks and Plazas from old html web site not yet added to the new site:

Malecón – The seaside road
Parque Colón/ Columbus Park
Parque Independencia/ Independence Park
Plaza de España or Plaza de Armas
Plazoleta y Callejónde los Curas/ Plaza and Alley of the Cures

STATUES
Fray Bartolomé Las Casas
Poet Julia de Burgos
MONTECINO THE MAN AND MONUMENT
The Statue of General Matías Ramón Mella
Ornamental Fountain Monument
Monument to the Japanese Agricultural Immigration
Sculpture Homeless Jesus
Sculpture of Juan Pablo Duarte
Memorial Column to the Shipwreck of the Sloop Aurora
Monumento Marina de Guerra (Santo Domingo Este)
Monumento a la Caña (Santo Domingo Este)

STREETS/CALLES
CALLE EL CONDE
CALLE LAS DAMAS
CALLE HOSTOS

*Streets and Calles from old html web site not yet added to the new site:

Malecón – The seaside road

Palacete Vicini

Palacete Vicini

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.

Palacete Vicini 19 de Marzo is a beautifully kept private home in Colonial Zone
Palacete Vicini 19 de Marzo is a beautifully kept private home in 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 magnificent lattice work on and above the entrance to Palacete Vicini
The magnificent lattice work on and above the entrance to Palacete Vicini

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.

The details of the second floor balcony of the Palacete Vicini
The details of the second floor balcony of the Palacete Vicini

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

Palacete Vicini on 19 de Marzo in Ciudad Colonial
Palacete Vicini on 19 de Marzo in Ciudad Colonial

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.

References
https://hoy.com.do/rarezas-en-casas-de-la-calle-19-de-marzo-2/

Parque Duarte

Parque Duarte

Parque Duarte is a beautiful plaza or park named after Juan Pablo Duarte, a Founding Father of the Dominican Republic. They erected a beautiful bronze statue in the center in honor of this Dominican hero.

The bronze statue of Juan Pablo Duarte and the Dominican Flag in the center of Parque Duarte in the Colonial City of Santo Domingo.
The bronze statue of Juan Pablo Duarte and the Dominican Flag in the center of Parque Duarte in the Colonial City of Santo Domingo.

Duarte Park | Plaza and Sculpture | Duarte Park – History & Legends | Location

Duarte Park

Parque Duarte is a neighborhood park that is a nice place to sit and wile away an afternoon. Maybe you could even join in a game of dominos. There are benches where you can sit in the shade under a tree, relax and watch the world pass by. It is calm and peaceful during the day.

A relaxing day sitting in the shade with the falling flowers in Parque Duarte
A relaxing day sitting in the shade with the falling flowers in Parque Duarte

When darkness comes this place is overrun by young people partying, drinking and listening to music. There is a Colmado and a few small bars surrounding this park where you can get a cold beer, a mixed drink or whatever type of liquid refreshment you desire. Different food vendors pass through where you can get ice cream, a plate of chicharrones (pork cracklings) and other local type snacks. I call this park “the alternative lifestyle park” as it has a variety of visitors in the evenings. Artists and musicians, bohemian, gay and straight, young and old. A very interesting place to observe and enjoy partying with a variety of humans.

Plaza and Sculpture

Honoring Juan Pablo Duarte on Día de Duarte with wreaths that were placed in his honor.
Honoring Juan Pablo Duarte on Día de Duarte with wreaths that were placed in his honor.

Plaza Duarte was named on November 20, 1891 by the Ayuntamiento of Santo Domingo.

They inaugurated the park and the statue of Duarte in the center of Parque Duarte on July 16, 1930 when Rafael Estrella Ureña was president of the Dominican Republic. Italian sculptor and painter Arturo Tomagnini created the hollow cast polished bronze statue between 1928 – 29 in Italy.

The Diosa de la Victoria / Goddess of Victory sits below the image of Duarte
The Diosa de la Victoria / Goddess of Victory sits below the image of Duarte

The sculptor depicts Juan Pablo Duarte standing with his right hand on his chest at his heart. In his left hand he holds the draft of the constitution. He stands proudly atop the granite and concrete pedestal. Sitting below him is the Diosa de la Victoria / Goddess of Victory. (Diosa de la Victoria (Nike), in Greek Mythology, is the goddess of victory both in war and in peaceful competition.)

Parque Duarte is in front of the Iglesia y Convento de los Dominicos.
Parque Duarte is in front of the Iglesia y Convento de los Dominicos.

Duarte Park – History & Legends

Here are a few legends and historical items that I have found to be very interesting.

*This square in it’s long history has also been known as Plaza Anacaona, Plaza Santo Domingo and Plaza del Exconvento Dominico / Plaza of the Ex-Convict Dominico, Plaza del Convento de los Dominicos.

*Haitian separatists fought for independence at this site in 1843.

*It was the site of bullfights during the celebrations of the Virgen del Rosario.

The beautiful Edificio Elmúdesi is one of the buildings that surround Parque Duarte
The beautiful Edificio Elmúdesi is one of the buildings that surround Parque Duarte

*Edificio Elmúdesi, built by Benigno Trueba in 1936, is one of the historical buildings that surround Parque Duarte. The building was the home and clinic of Doctor Antonio Elmúdesi. The Elmúdesi building is part of the architectural heritage of the Dominican Republic.

*In the 19th century, this was the place chosen by the Trinitaria to meet and begin a conspiracy against the Haitian occupation that took place between 1822 and 1844.

People relaxing under the trees of Parque Duarte. Some are enjoying a cold beer and others are just enjoying the ambiance
People relaxing under the trees of Parque Duarte. Some are enjoying a cold beer and others are just enjoying the ambiance.

*Legend says that the queen of Jaragua, Taino Anacaona, was hanged here but it has never been proven.

*Sir Francis Drake and his followers hung to death the Dominican Fathers Juan de Caravia and Juan de Illanes in 1586.

Location

Panoramic view of Parque Duarte from Calle Duarte and Padre Billini.
Panoramic view of Parque Duarte from Calle Duarte and Padre Billini.

Calle Padre Billini, on the corners of Duarte y Hostos, in the center of the Colonial Zone. The park faces the Iglesia y Convento de Los Dominicos and the Capilla de la Tercera Orden Dominica, where the first university of the New World was founded in 1538.

Walking – From the Conde turn south onto Padre Billini or Duarte. Walk in the direction of the sea. It is about 2 blocks from Calle el Conde.

Northern Walls of Colonial Santo Domingo

The Northern Walls and Forts of Colonial Santo Domingo / Las Murallas y Los Fuertes del Norte de Colonial Santo Domingo

The walls of the north side of the old city of Santo Domingo are all but lost with a few small exceptions. From Fuerte Santa Bárbara and the battery of the Angulo, on the eastern edge of the colonial city along Rio Ozama, and Fuerte la Concepción, on the westernmost part of the city, little remains of the original Forts of Santo Domingo.

Fuerte de San Antón | Fuerte de San Francisco | Fuerte de San Miguel | Fuerte de San Lazaro | Fuerte de la Caridad

Most people visiting the Colonial City think that the walls surrounding the city only ran along the waters’ edge, the Caribbean Sea and up to Rio Ozama. But, there was more to protecting this important Colonial City than that. Many of the attacks on the city of Santo Domingo came from the land surrounding the city. The walls and forts were needed to protect the city from land attacks as well. This is why the entire city was surrounded by walls and forts.

It is sad to think that much of the history and these forts along the north side of the Colonial City are destroyed. Their walls are either destroyed or hidden behind modern buildings and forgotten.

The wall of Fuerte San Antón from Av. La Mella entering into the Colonial City
The wall of Fuerte San Antón from Av. La Mella entering into the Colonial City

These lost, or almost lost Fuertes/Forts and Murallas/Walls (east to west) are Fuerte San Antón, Fuerte de San Francisco, Fuerte San Miguel, Fuerte San Lázaro and Fuerte de la Caridad. It is easiest to see these walls walking from the Barrio of Santa Bárbara along Av. La Mella, crisscrossing between the streets of Duarte, General Cabral, Juan Isidro Pérez all the way down to Palo Hincado. (You can check the old html – nonresponsive map of the Colonial Zone and see the locations of these walls.)

Fuerte de San Antón

The wall of Fuerte San Antón accessed by Av. La Mella
The wall of Fuerte San Antón accessed by Av. La Mella

Designed by J. B. Ruggero in 1672, it is one of the seven bastions surrounding the city in the north. It was not in the best location at the bottom of a hill so it was rebuilt many times. The Ermita de San Antón sits along this wall at the Plaza San Antón. The catwalk is still visible on the top of the mural. It can be seen at the beginning of Santa Bárbara and behind the small chapel, Ermita de San Antón.

The catwalk along the top of the wall of Fuerte San Antón
The catwalk along the top of the wall of Fuerte San Antón

Directions: Hostos and General Cabral along Ave. Mella

Fuerte de San Francisco

Calle Jose Reyes and Restauracion the start of the Muralla of Fuerte San Miguel
Calle Jose Reyes and Restauracion the start of the Muralla of Fuerte San Miguel

Located between the Forts of San Miguel and Ermita de San Antón, there is nothing left of this fort but a few small traces. Its wall, at one time, connected chapel or Ermita de San Antón and Ruins of the San Francisco Monastery. The fort was demolished at the end of the 19th century.

Fuerte San Miguel Calle Jose Reyes and Restauracion
Fuerte San Miguel Calle Jose Reyes and Restauracion

Directions: Duarte and Vicente Celestino Duarte and General Cabral and Avenue Mella

Fuerte de San Miguel

The Murallas of Fuerte San Miguel
The Murallas of Fuerte San Miguel

Located in front of the church of San Miguel. All that is left of this fort is a wall that is in bad decay. More information about the Iglesia San Miguel.

Directions: Juan Isidro Pérez and José Reyes

Fuerte de San Lazaro

Calle Restauracion with the Fuerte San Lazaro in the distance
Calle Restauracion with the Fuerte San Lazaro in the distance

Constructed at the end of the 17th century using a pentagon shape. It is the only fort that has a strong double ramp leading up to the fort. This is very unique and is the only stronghold that has this type of incline. More information about the Iglesia de San Lazaro.

Fuerte San Lazaro with its unique double ramp
Fuerte San Lazaro with its unique double ramp

Directions: Juan Isidro Pérez coming in from Santomé and José Reyes

Fuerte de la Caridad/ Fort of Charity

Atop the Fuerte San Lazaro has the openings for cannons
Atop the Fuerte San Lazaro has the openings for cannons

Fuerte de la Caridad is part of the northern section of the wall, built in the late seventeenth century. It can be seen in ruins hidden behind some buildings.

Directions: Juan Isidro Pérez #215 and Mella

Part of the wall at Fuerte San Lazaro leading to Fuerte de la Caridad
Part of the wall at Fuerte San Lazaro leading to Fuerte de la Caridad

Walk The Wall Tour

These forts and walls are a much-overlooked part of the Colonial City. To understand the history of this important colonial city I suggest that when visiting that you “Walk The Wall” as I call it. I do a tour where we walk the wall and just talk and enjoy the less-visited parts of the city. The tour is very casual and leisurely. At your pace and see what you are interested in seeing. If you are interested please email me at jan@colonialzone-dr.com