The Colonial Zone-based Hostal Nicolas de Ovando is steeped in both history and creature comforts
Staying at the 500-year-old Hostal Nicolas de Ovando, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, brings the era into sharp focus when you discover that the hotel’s original resident and namesake, the first governor of the Americas, was a contemporary of Christopher Columbus. Set on Las Damas, one of the New World’s first paved roads, the three 16th-century stone houses that comprise the property still retain some of their original fortress walls.
Despite these tangible ties to the past, the 104-room hotel comes across as decidedly modern thanks to 59 contemporary-style rooms and bustling public spaces where guests can access free WiFi, sip cocktails, and bounce to merengue beats. Of course, no less charming are the colonial-style rooms with their high ceilings, hacienda shutters, and ochre tile floors.
When you’re not exploring the city, the hotel offers plenty of ways to spend your leisure time. Linger over fine Caribbean and International cuisine at the on-site La Residence terrace restaurant; rum-aficionados will want to head to the hotel’s Cibao Bar where a line-up of aged rums from 12 different Caribbean countries are paired with a hand-rolled Dominican cigar furnished by the in-house tabaquero (tobacconist). A library and billiards room keep with the theme – plus there’s a gym for the morning after.