ROOM SERVICE

Dominican Republic 2019 | REAL ESTATE & CONSTRUCTION | INTERVIEW

Grupo Therrestra has positioned itself to benefit from the hotel building boom in the Dominican Republic.

Hugo Pérez Ovalles
BIOGRAPHY
Founder and current president of Grupo Therrestra, Hugo Pérez Ovalles has more than two decades of experience in the construction sector, focusing on the management, direction and execution of hotel projects nationally and internationally. He obtained his university degree as an engineer, graduating as an outstanding student. He received “Magna Cum Laude” distinction from the Pontificia Universidad Católica Madre y Maestra (PUCMM) in 1995. In 2016, his company received a special recognition from the Camara Dominicana de la Construcción (CADOCON) for its contributions to the development of tourism construction in the country.

What were the first projects you did?

I arrived in Bávaro in 2004 and started to work on small buildings, ancillary structures for hotels I saw that big construction companies were not interested in doing small jobs so I realized there was a business niche in that area, and I started with these small things no one wanted, such as security booths, construction works like renovations at uncomfortable times, night shifts, and more. Right after starting my business formally as Therrestra, I had the good fortune to meet Pablo Piñero, the founder and owner of Bahía Príncipe Hotels (Grupo Piñero), a person to whom we are grateful for the opportunity he gave us at that time. As a company, we worked hard for his hotel group, always fulfilling our commitments and we never disappointed Piñero. In response to our engagement he helped us, offering us more and more work and helping us to grow through the years, till we got to expand internationally. One of the most memorable projects we have done in the last years is Hotel Fantasia, a hotel with a new concept intended for families. That year, 2016, 15 hotels were built at the same time in Punta Cana. There was a shortage of labor, high levels of migration, and continuous rains for three months. We had to finish the Hotel Fantasia in seven months. Despite the challenges, the project ended up as a success. The hotel has 550 rooms. Its family concept makes it different from other hotels. We have the satisfaction of having built the hotel in record time, despite many setbacks. It has been so successful that its design was replicated in 2018 in Tenerife, and it will continue to be replicated in many more places. Since our beginning the DR has shown a huge demand for hotels. We intend to be a trustworthy platform for hotel chains, executing their projects simplifying the construction, building hotels with full quality and in the shortest times.

What is the comparative advantage of Constructora Therrestra?

Execution time is our greatest strength. Thanks to Pablo Piñero, we have accelerated our efforts. In the past, an average hotel with about 500 rooms was completed in around a year and a half, but now we have achieved to develop an efficient management, optimizing the construction process and allowing us to finish them in seven or eight months. In addition, we give the customer a personalized service. We are well positioned; we have become a solid company and we have earned respect from our competitors and repeat clients for our quality signature and our effective management. We work hard and our projects speak for themselves. We take care of every detail and delivery accuracy and promptness. We have a staff of 250 engineers and more than 4,000 workers distributed in the Dominican Republic and Jamaica. For us Jamaica is an interesting emerging market; however, the DR remains at the top of the game, with great tax-friendly incentives for investors, strong human capacity, and a high tourist appeal.

What is the importance of the training courses you support?

We have reach some agreements with some of the best universities in the country, INTEC, PUCMM and with the local school EDUCARE, among other institutions, with the main goal of being a knowledge facilitator tool for children in need and outstanding students. One of the most important things we would like to share with others is the knowledge we have acquired, and as a company we would like to be an example of what people can achieve by working with dedication and commitment. We have decided to be part of the solution. We must stop complaining about problems and work on solutions. We want to give our collaborators all the tools they need to be better professionally and personally, because human capital is part of our success and strength.