North Coast Discovery Tour

Checking out the North coast this winter for a couple weeks has anyone went
on the North Coast Discovery Tour. Pick us up at the airport and places to stay
when were there, sounds good whats your thoughts??

Not done it and dont know anyone who has, sorry.

Be cautious, no one knows anything about it. Sort of sounds like those time share deals or maybe a gated community kind of thing. Put you up in a villa, show you around & sell you a piece of "Paradise".  Just check it out, but no commitments.. Let us know what you find out. Who knows, it may be a legit good thing.

Just because 1 person and now two don't know about it doesnt mean " no one knows". That isn't fair.

Let's give people a chance to respond and not jump the gun here.

Has anyone else had any experience with this?

Sorry to say, we have not heard of this or experienced it.

I  hear from others outside of this group who speak highly of the company.  Not my firsthand info,  but passing it on.

Darlene in Puerta Plata this weekend.

Bruce Nagel :

Checking out the North coast this winter for a couple weeks has anyone went
on the North Coast Discovery Tour. Pick us up at the airport and places to stay
when were there, sounds good whats your thoughts??

Bruce, do you have a link of the tour you mention which sounds more like an escorted package with accommodation along the way.

Those of us living here can then give you some insights and comments.

It may be one way for you to get about and see the North Coast or be a pitch to a particular area.

Mindful of your long term intentions as posted in another thread - to find a house to relocate to for the winter months - it may be better to focus on the areas where you will find that type of property in your budget range with an expat community and the essential services available. From your earlier posts I would suggest that you are likely to be looking in a perhaps 3 areas:

Rio San Juan to Cabrera: you will find some nice villa properties here in a more relaxed environment with mountain backdrops and some smaller nice beaches and the Playa Grande complex with golf course. This is a popular retirement area for sure and you already have the contact details of a resident there elsewhere in the forum.

Sosua to Cabarete: there are a few villa complexes such as Casa Linda but are more budget focused. There is Sea Horse Ranch too. Sosua unfortunately has a tainted reputation and all that comes with it, but does have amenities and a larger expat/North american community. Pluses and minuses to consider.

Las Terrenas and Samana peninsula: you will find all types of villas here to suit your budget and some in spectacular hill side locations overlooking wonderful beaches. The small town has a European feel and a large expat community but fewer North Americans.

Luperon area is an outside option.

I would therefore suggest that perhaps you do take the plunge and hire a car and book 3 or maybe 4 hotels in the above areas and so experience each close at hand personally and drive from one to the next and see it all on the way.

So much information to process, we have to nail down a date thinking in January when
it's sooo wonderful in Wisconsin. Thank you for all the input me and my wife will get
this figured out yet!

Make sure you plan the visit to take in a trip whale watching in Samana from 15th January when the season starts.

http://www.whalesamana.com/

Awesome that's on our bucket list!!

Whale watching is best end of January to early March!

Ok we will plan accordingly...thank you!

The Discovery Tour sounds similar to a video I saw that seems to promote or favor the Cabrera area, but it may not be the same. Their videos are helpful and interesting, and give some good and somewhat balanced advice. I believe the gentleman who heads it up is from Canada originally, but has been living in the Cabrera area for some time and has a lot of connections and relationships to both expats and locals in that area. I believe it is tied to a real estate company. If it is the same company, he does not seem to be so gracious in describing his competitors.

You hit the proverbial nail dead smack on the head.  Barry is a salesman & has a bunch of "tous".  they are interesting & informative . But, only are informative to what they have to sell, repesent or have some business connection to.  This in itself is not a bad thing. A bit limiting , however you do get to see some things & places you may not otherwise find on your own. IT IS A Business after after all. Remember that & enjoy the tour. Cabrera is a beautiful quiet area, no beaches in town, but very near by. Unlike time share come ons, there ain't no free lunches with the tour. Some good sea food & such on the trip.. I say, take the tour if you have the time.

Highlights a point I make all the time: whatever advice you get remember the bias and motivation of the person or persons giving it.

Some do it to sell real estate, or legal services, or to get commissions or kick backs.  That does not make their information wrong!  Always keep their motivation in the back of your mind! Get additional advice, feedback and options. Confirm everything!

Barry Soloman is no longer running DRescapes. Denise- the Remax agent in the area has taken it over... But my husband and I went on one of Barry's Discovery tours and we bought a house...but not from him.. but, he made sure everyone was accommodated to their liking and some of our friends and neighbors are building and bought through Barry. I believe Denise is offering a similar tour. Do it. But, like everyone said ...with a grain of salt....Denise was the agent featured on the 2nd Caribbean Life episode filmed in Cabrera...we were the first!  :D

Great info, thanks!

Uncle Buck & Chantal's episode airs in February!!  They are building here in Sosua.  Great people!

If you want to see me fall into the ocean, then be sure to watch!  I can't imagine them cutting that scene out.

The hell with glo    bal warming, he raised  the oceans level!                       He is a giant!

That made us both laugh out loud!!!

I've been in communication with those folks for a month or so.  Thus far, I'm only impressed.

There hasn't even been a hint of anybody trying to sell me anything.

I may be wrong but my sense is that there was a small, core group of expats who slowly added to their ranks over time, selecting disparate personalities with needed skill sets who could bring value added to a growing enterprise.

I hope to get down to meet them in the next month and look around Cabrera.

All best,

Jay

It seems That Barry, the original tour dude has sold the thing to a woman who now operates the tour. Earlyreports indicate that is still a good thing. Still ultimately a Sales tour, but not a heavy handed one so far.  Cabrera is a great area, easy, laid back living.  Buy now because with Playa Grande investing more than one billion( yup, billion) in the immediate area, real estate will sky rocket soon. Have fun & enoy the tour.

Good feedback so thanks.

Playa Grande had been " in development" for at least 15 years. There is no hurry.

HAHAHA...Barry did NOT sell it...he worked with Larry who posts and hosts the website. They had a falling out and Barry spun off his own site Something Feels Wrong.  The title is misleading but ultimately accurate. And, Amanera Resort at Playa Grande is open and planning a private airport and the surrounding hills are slated for mega-mansions... there's a ton of activity around there and prices are definitely going up fast... I hope it means lots of good jobs for the locals, but since there's no beach and really no nightlife...I hope that means the criminal element won't increase proportionately.

If you can ride a motorcycle -
consider MotoCaribe Tours....
good way to see the country

What are tous?

Jay Reynolds
Just now
Today I arrived in the Dominican Republic (hence the DR), having prior expired, in depth, for the last 45 years, Belize, Mexico, The Yucataon in Particular, Panama, Honduras and Puerto Rico. Had never been to the DR.

Years ago I decided that I wanted to relocate with my wife and young son to the Pacific Northwest using Places Rated Almanac trying to find where I wanted to move in the US. Don’t remember all the criteria but among those were jobs, climate, healthcare, recreation, transportation, education, etc..

Now, a few decades later, and not having to use a book but the internet instead, and expanding my range to the WHOLE EARTH, I developed my now flowchart/spreadsheet.

In no particular order my initial list was something like: 1) Cost of housing, 2) Climate, 3) Government.

I missed the INTANGIBLE:

HOW ARE THE PEOPLE?

Anecdote time:

Comfortably way out in the bush. Instructions: “Walk to the place with the big Papaya tree and then turn right at the street light and you can get food at the My Familia Restaurant”

BLEW IT: Ended up a private guy’s house and barking dogs and he was kind and patient in guiding me to my destination.

Got a killer meal with a go box to boot.

Bottom line for day one: I’m VERY impressed. I’m being situated in a Condo with amazing ‘build into the landscape’ realities with killer ocean views and pool and local that all are too willing to help with my imperfect Spanish. I love it so far. Tomorrow I get out to scout the area for some projects have been working on.

Let me say something about the condo: (I generally HATE them). The wood word is so good, (if you have actually built that kind of stuff like me) I makes you just want to run your hands all over it and marvel…….

This is like DC current, it’s direct and good. I’m not going to get “shocked” unless I look for that experience.

More as the week goes on. So far totally exceeding my expectations. Typing this sitting on a handmade white leather sofa which I love.

Wow. This is interesting!

Ma Familia ??
Cabrera ?

Si!

Mi familia es muy bien! Bienvenido a Cabrera! Except we're not there yet...una semana!

I’m posting this in DREscapes Tour because, well, I’m on it.

Only positives thus far.  Here is what jumps out at me.

1) Transparency.  Denise charges for the tour and discloses those charges up front.  Hence, no hidden agenda and none of what we’d call ‘Exclusive Listings’ back in the States so no incentive to talk up one place and diss another.

2) Amiable Companionship.  Denise and her husband Steve are articulate, well established, well networked and well respected in the community as is easily discerned when I’d ask (testing this premise), 'Can we pull in here?' and then seeing the respect and cordiality with which they are greeted.

3) Value. I don’t know how intensively this duo usually works with their tour participants.  Before coming I made it clear that I had a house to sell if I was to relocate, might or might not come back and wouldn’t be signing any papers.  Each of them, and both of them, have afforded me much time and expertise and helped me as I have talked through various ideas as to how I might most productively engage myself if I do relocate.

4) Special requests.  Prior to coming down here I did as much research as I could on various properties and they ALL look better in person than what I was able to see online although the online was a good as, or better, than descriptions and photos I could see elsewhere.  I’m keenly interested in green building techniques and technology and my request for “sample of subsoil and places where I can wade off in a river and take water flow measurements was met with “Sure, we can do that!”  That Steve has a long and storied history in many phases of commercial and industrial construction has been a prime asset.

5) Bottom line.  I’m one day into a 4 day tour.  I was picked up at the airport and my day was packed today from 9 am to 4 pm and I’m already more than satisfied with the value I have received.

More later, a lot to digest!  (And the food has been AWESOME!)

Kind regards,

Jay

You might investigate Miguel and his son Sebastian...

https://drcoastalproperties.com/

We need more stories like this to dispel the plethora of negative posts. Thank you. Coastal & Sebastion are unique & an exciting company.  Quality stuff also.  Happy for you, keep posting!

Here's a neat observation.... Sebastian's competition, Denise, began a conversation with me during which she sang his high praises the whole time... Not the usual, Si?

Also, I live in and around what is considered a pretty safe city in nw Louisiana.  Be in the wrong place at the wrong time and you can be in very deep trouble pretty fast.  It will come and find you.

First night  here, somewhat in the cups (more than somewhat) I decided to go for a hike into a totally unknown region.  Effectively had a large flashing Neon sign on my head that said "Gringo Target".

Kept walking.  Why?  Every friendly gesture of mine was met and more.  Had a LONG hike forgetting to bring something other than my Ariat work boots from the oil field.  Felt much less safe on the outskirts of Cozumel 25 years ago. 

In the hometown it wouldn't have been that way.  Going to an ATM there has actually required having backup in my car, and the sound of my friend racking a round into my 45 was apparently instantly recognizable by the rather large fellow who had walked up behind me.  And that was in the 80's... much downhill since then.

As my momma taught me, "Trouble Don't Come By Itself"

In sum:  Looking hard but have not found any reason not to keep looking and to make a second trip after returning home to do some building materials trials in my home lab.

Addenda to previous note:  Overall, I have been afforded access into parts of the community and had a view into what I could have never otherwise seen given the short duration of my trip, thanks to my hosts.

JR

Follow up with DRCoastal... enuff said

This is a months-long process and that's on my punch list.  Thank you, Jay

JR, glad everything is going well.

Don't take this the wrong way, but always in DR in the weeks before Christmas is something different and it is open season for delinquents. At this time of year normally tame quiet areas become wilder. In the campo where I wander freely normally there has been a bunch of robberies. The bad guys are looking for their Christmas bonus too and a raw gringo will be seen as a gift!

Take an extra bit of caution right now and enjoy. I am and I think DR is safe on the whole given caution.

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