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  1. #1
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    Smile Questions about Santo Domingo living for a single Black American male

    Hello Everyone,

    I was just looking through some posts and you all are very informative. I will be in Santo Domingo next week from 6/10-6/14 for an interview & apartment search as I may be moving to SD in August. This will be my first trip to la republica and I am a little nervous as I dont know what to expect.

    I will be traveling by myself. Not trying to be vain, but I would describe myself as a 28 year old 6'6 black male, athletic build, formerly a collegiate basketball athlete, decent looking, articulate, educated, originally from Jamaica, but most recently from Miami, Florida. I've been told I am easy going and polite.. maybe its the Jamaican in me :-). I recently took 2 semesters in Spanish here at the University of Miami and I am using Rosetta Stone provided by my work. I would say my spanish speaking is elementary. Just curious if anyone could answer a couple of things for me:

    - How are black males percieved in DR?
    - For my short visit, my work is setting me up at the Hilton- Is this a good hotel? Are there any attractions nearby?
    - I do like dominican women . Where is a good place to meet local singles during my stay?
    - I'd like to expereince some of the culture during my trip, is there any cool places to go?
    - What about the nitelife? Any good place to go for a single guy?
    - How safe is it for me to travel around by myself?

    I have asked a few questions to collegues who live in SD. Some questions, however I dont feel comfortable asking to work collegues. The guys at work have offered to take me out on some nights, however since most of them are a little older and married, I'm not sure I'll get the real perspective for the single guy.

    Sorry for the long post. Any thoughts would be helpful.

    Cheers!

  2. #2
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    no issues I am a black Dominican and i seem not to have any problems here
    i hope you do make it.....
    if you do welcome to DR

  3. #3
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    I have some friends who have stayed at the Hilton and they were very impressed. From your description I'm pretty sure the girls will find you lol. I'm not that familiar with SD but I'm sure you'll get lots of good tips shortly.
    Enjoy your trip!!

  4. #4
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    - How are black males percieved in DR?
    Depending on the social circle it varies. There is a deep racism here that one could argue is primarily based on skin color. HOWEVER, as a non-dominican with a US job, you will find you are grouped more as an American and the generalizations that come with that, rather than as a person of color. I could go deeper into the social circles and the nuisances there, but would rather not here. Feel free to send me a personal message through DR1.



    - For my short visit, my work is setting me up at the Hilton- Is this a good hotel? Are there any attractions nearby?
    Great hotel. Lots of US companies set folks up there. THE newest hotel on the malecon. It will be cool.

    - I do like dominican women . Where is a good place to meet local singles during my stay?
    Best way to meet "real" women, not ones out on a hustle is with hanging out with dominicans or people who live here. However, many single friends do well on the day-to-day. The grocery store is on fire as are other stores, and places you find yourself running errands. Eventually spanish will be necessary, but just trying to speak can take you a long way. If you like to dance, then clubs/bars can also be good, but are best to go with locals.

    - I'd like to expereince some of the culture during my trip, is there any cool places to go?
    By culture if you mean plays/art museums/etc.., then not that many. This is more of a balanced lifestyle place, meaning you can stay in great shape, eat well, have fun nights, visit beautiful beaches, etc...but not too cosmopolitan. Great winter baseball though.

    - What about the nitelife? Any good place to go for a single guy?
    Bars/clubs, as anywhere all depends on what you are into. You will need to get into either local music (salsa, merengue, bachata) and/or house. Limited live music options (cinema cafe, hard rock cafe). Challenge here is people don't hangout alone, they travel in groups, so someone that is alone has a tough time. Not hard to make friends though, and co-workers, and others love to take you under their wing.

    - How safe is it for me to travel around by myself?
    At 6'6' super safe. I find it as safe as any hood in NYC. Just walk like you now where you are going without be flashy and have some common sense, it is a safe place!

    feel free to send a pm.

  5. #5
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    For nightlife check out Dock at Acropolis, they have happy hour from 5-8pm everyday lots of young professionals go there - its busy 7 days a week. Cinema Cafe is good on certain nights. Both will have quite a few foreigners and english speaking dominicans. As for collegues showing you around, even if older and married, they still probably know how to have a good time, you might want to check a couple places with them, find a buddy, and get in there.

  6. #6
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    Not much to add to what others have said. I am an American female who came here single, so I have a different perspective, but some things might apply:

    Hilton location- Good hotel, great location. Walk along the malecon, but certainly don't pick up any ladies along there! You can walk to the Zona Colonial from there in about 15 - 20 mins.

    In my opinion, the Zona Colonial is the best for both culture (some museums, colonial architecture) and nightlife.

    If you're Jamaican, there's a good chance you know how to play dominoes. Watch a few games at your local colmado, it's pretty entertaining!

    Where to meet singles?
    I agree wholeheartedly, meet them through your friends or work collegaues. It really is the best way- although make sure your friends know what type of woman you are looking for...

    If you do end up moving here, I suggest joining a gym. The one I go to is full of young people and I have been hit on upon occasion.

    I enjoy living in SDQ. Best of luck!

  7. #7
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    Welcome in advance to the DR! Good luck with the interview!

    There is a great deal of racism here, most of which is associated with Haitians who tend to very dark-skinned. The higher up you move in socio-economic classes here, the lighter the skin and the lower the darker. Sounds like with your professional job you will be in an environment and social circle where that is not much of an issue. Also Dominicans generally tend to define beauty by having "pelo bueno" rather than "pelo malo" (kinky hair), lighter skin and a narrower nose. But since you are a guy it's not going to affect you as much if at all.

    If you find yourself just randomly standing in the street alone in Santo Domingo, and are dark-skinned, people will possibly assume you are Haitian. In general public settings you can expect to be called "moreno" more frequently than senor. If you are very dark-skinned, make sure you keep an ID on you in case you get stopped by some genious immigration, police or army folks who might confuse you with an illegal Haitian and try to shake you down. This happened to someone I knew near the border and they almost got deported on the spot even though they spoke English, Spanish and no Kreyol and was traveling with a white American.

    Don't expect average people to assume you are an American on first glance. When they find out they will probably act surprised, or in another case I know of, often try to argue with you that you really aren't American at all. The word American brings to mind the following: blonde hair, blue eyes, white skin.

    To meet ladies, don't be to eager and take it slow. Try to make contacts with professional and educated ladies through your work friends. Don't just fall for the first or any beautiful Dominican woman (there are many) because you might be selling yourself short and at worse get hustled.

  8. #8
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    I live in Santo Domingo, and go out A LOT, but basically with my dominican friends. You can give me a call or send me an email if you like, just let me a message!

    In case you like the same lifestyle, i can take you out with us

    I just don't know too many girls, so i cannot help you out with this...

  9. #9
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    I am not "black", so maybe I see things from a different perspective.
    But I seem to observe this:
    In the US, a black man who acts and looks American is now being perceived as an African American.
    Here... and African America is a "gringo". Being of black or African decent does not seem to make it appear more "local" to our locals than any other American or most foreigner... un gringo prieto (a dark "gringo") , as I seem to hear them like to say around here.
    The large majority of Dominicans, even the darkest ones, don't seem to have an "African origin"-conscience.



    ... J-D.

  10. #10
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    I'm a haitian female living in the Dr but for some reason everyone including haitians assume that I'm african american, go figure. I stopped trying to figure Dominicans out, just go with the flow, relax, take it easy and you'll have a good time. I've been there 5 yrs and have been having the time of my life !

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