Welcome to Tropicalia’s 2017 Sustainability Report. As CEO of Cisneros, I am honored to reflect upon our journey in becoming one of the most sustainable luxury resorts in the world. Nearly a decade ago, we started supporting sustainable development in the Miches community in eastern Dominican Republic, and we are celebrating great accomplishments during a remarkable year, deemed the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development by the United Nations.
"We acknowledge the role of tourism in achieving inclusive and sustainable economic growth..."
We acknowledge the role of tourism in achieving inclusive and sustainable economic growth, as well as social inclusiveness, employment and poverty reduction; we have ensured that our initiatives and efforts with the local community contribute to the(SDG). In fact, we started 2017 with a great milestone - Fundación Tropicalia’s sustainable tourism supply-chain program, supported by the Inter-American Development Bank’s Multilateral Investment Fund (IDB-MIF), received the second runner-up United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) for Innovation in Non-Governmental Organizations. At the Awards Ceremony held in Madrid, we were honored to join other exceptional worldwide leaders committed to positively impacting and inspiring sustainable tourism development.
We believe sustainability must also be integrated within all stages of the development life-cycle, including financial processes. In 2017, we were able to leverage our sustainable architecture and community development programs in Miches to help secure lenders and investors that support tourism projects which significantly affect economic growth in the smallest and poorest regions, while supporting biodiversity and other environmental considerations like climate change. Our talented team of collaborators, led by Patrick Freeman, President of Cisneros Real Estate, successfully obtained preliminary approvals for financing of Four Seasons Tropicalia with bothof the Inter-American Development Bank Group, and (IFC) of the World Bank Group and will be finalizing this transaction in early 2018. During this process Tropicalia received IDB Invest’s highest development impact score of all corporate projects approved in 2017.
"Ensuring resource efficiency and environmental protection remains a core area of our project and corporate values..."
Ensuring resource efficiency and environmental protection remains a core area of our project and corporate values as we continue to rigorously evaluate, test and apply our robust Sustainability Management System (SMS) with our design, development and architecture teams. This year we completed the design of Four Seasons Tropicalia, which in addition to LEED, will also comply with the IFC’s rigorous standards for Excellence in Design for Greater Efficiencies (EDGE). While EDGE requires a minimum of 20% energy and water savings, we anticipate surpassing that figure, achieving up to 50% in savings due to the implementation of passive cooling design strategies such as green roofs and open corridors.
Children are the future of Miches, and sustainable economic development depends on the quality of their education and the protection of their rights. Fundación Tropicalia’s education and gender programs support these objectives by providing administrative and career support to educators, while simultaneously working directly with children via in-school programs and our all-girls summer camp,(“I’m a Girl, I’m Important”). We are particularly proud of this program, which empowers girls and dares them to dream big. In 2017, we reached a record of 306 girls and created an Ambassador’s Network to support fundraising and awareness efforts in the Dominican Republic. In an effort to counteract the rampant gender violence taking place in the Dominican Republic, we also organized the conference, Gender Equality in Dominican Republic: Rights and opportunities, which received support from UN Women and the Dominican Ministry of Women.
At Tropicalia, we have established a strong foundation to advance the United Nations SDGs. Protecting natural and cultural resources, while empowering host communities and creating effective management systems for our business, will be crucial for this.
Many thanks to all who have supported our efforts to date. In 2018 we will continue forging our way toward the collective Journey to 2030. Please join us in accelerating the shift toward a more sustainable tourism sector for the future.
Tropicalia leveraged its sustainable design, and 9 years of implementing socioeconomic and community development programs in Miches, to advance financing of Four Seasons Tropicalia with international development lenders.