Santiago, Dominican Republic — PROCIGAR, the Association of Dominican Cigar Manufacturers, celebrated their fifteenth annual Procigar Festival.

5th Annual Procigar Festival, The Final Puff

The world-renowned cigar makers of Procigar announced their fifteenth annual Procigar Festival, where over 1000 guests from more than 20 countries were welcomed to Cigar Country, The Dominican Republic. This six-day destination event featured a variety of experiences that gathered suppliers, retailers, consumers, producers, and industry associates from all over the world to celebrate the pride and passion of Dominican Cigars.

On Sunday, February 19th the festival started at the luxury destination, Casa de Campo, known as the best golf resort in the world, where attendees enjoyed the warm Caribbean sun, a tour of the spectacular countryside by horseback, relaxed on the beach, played in the surf — the list goes on. The next day a catamaran to Catalina Island took place followed by a sunset bonfire dinner at Minitas Beach Club hosted by Grupo de Maestros of Tabacalera de García.

On Tuesday, February 20th Tabacalera de García, the biggest cigar factory in the world, held a tour with a guided visit to their facilities. In the afternoon, guests departed to Santiago, the Cigar Capital of the World, for three days, where they participated in guided tours of the following cigar factories and tobacco fields: Quesada Cigars, La Aurora, General Cigar Dominicana, Tabacalera Palma, De Los Reyes Cigars, Tabacalera A. Fuente, PDR Cigars, Tabacalera La Alianza – E.P. Carrillo, La Flor Dominicana, Davidoff Cigars, Montecristo, as well as a visit to the Chateau de la Fuente, Cigar Family Charitable Foundation and House of Dreams. An exclusive gift bag was presented to festival guests upon their arrival, including special items such as a limited-edition cigar box, ashtray, cutter, lighter and others cigar accessories, followed by an exquisite welcome cocktail hosted by Procigar members and their staff.

While in Santiago, attendees had the opportunity to attend the Procigar Field Day, an activity exclusively designed for one-on-one interactions with the icons and gurus of the Dominican cigar industry. Additionally, other leisure activities were offered in the afternoons: a rum and cigar pairing with Casa Brugal and a Smoking Challenge by the International Association of Cigar Sommeliers (IACS).

On Wednesday February 22nd, after the tours, the Welcome Dinner Party was held at the Parque Central, where all guests received an exclusive cigar box manufactured by Zanwill International and enjoyed Dominican a remarkable culinary experience together with live music by local performers. Afterwards, our traditional Dominican music contest took place, where the winners received 50 cigars manufactured by one of the Procigar members. Hendrik Kelner, president of PROCIGAR, welcomed everyone to the Dominican Republic, the country of open arms, where the affection and kindness of the Dominicans overflows, and encouraged each attendee to enjoy the best cigars in the world. He also emphasized tobacco’s value to the Dominican Republic over the ages, being present in our culture for as far back as history can remember.

The famous White Party took take place at Santiago’s Monumento a los Héroes de la Restauración on Thursday, February 23rd. Attendees enjoyed a unique atmosphere with a majestic set up that highlights the beauty and welcoming atmosphere of our beloved city. Those present at the event received a very special cigar box and art piece designed by the artist Angurria and manufactured by International Packaging. The cigars contained in the boxes were: Tabacalera de García: Vegafina 1998 VF54; Tabadom Holding: Davidoff Gran Cru; La Aurora: Preferidos 1903 Platinum; Quesada Cigars: Casa Magna Connecticut Toro; General Cigar Dominicana: Flint Knoll Macanudo; PDR Cigars: El Vinyet Cuvee Special Churchill; De Los Reyes Cigars: Saga Solaz Corona; Tabacalera A. Fuente: A.F. Don Carlos II Double Robusto; La Flor Dominicana: Chaper 1; Tabacalera La Alianza EP Carrillo: Reserva Churchill Especial 7 and Tabacalera Palma: La Galera Imperial Jade.

The Gala Dinner Party on February 24th was celebrated at the Centro Español, a private club founded in 1965. On this night, guests were welcomed with a special cigar box manufactured by Vrijdag Premium Printing. The guests also experienced a delightful dinner and a spectacular show featuring live music. The traditional auction of unique and rare items included 25 lots that helped to set new record of US$ 440,000.00 for benefiting Voluntariado Jesús con los Niños (a non-profit organization for ill children), Sociedad San Vicente de Paúl (senior retirement home for low-income elders), Procigar’s charitable initiative “A Home for My Family” (housing program for disadvantaged yet deserving employees of the members companies), among others nonprofit organizations. The event culminated with an after party featuring DJs, performances by dancers, and the official presentation of new passive and active members of Procigar Association: Tabacalera Xamayca and Arnold Andre.

Procigar Festival is a truly unique experience catered to cigar lovers worldwide. It features on site educational experiences and tours of the Dominican Republic’s world-renowned cigar factories led by the legends of Dominican cigars themselves. Attendees can enjoy the festival in any number of ways, from nightly entertainment to leisure activities, all with a fine cigar in hand! This special opportunity is sure to provide a lifetime’s worth of memories and leave no doubt as to why the Dominican Republic makes the best premium cigars in the world!

About Procigar

Procigar was formed in 1992 by a collective of the Dominican Republic’s most storied cigar makers with the intention of protecting the reputation and future of our beloved industry by setting and maintaining only the highest standards of quality and preserving the heritage of our land, Cigar Country, exporter of the finest premium cigars in the world.

Today, the Dominican Republic has earned the title of Cigar Country. Our members have collectively committed to the highest standards of quality and consistency which they have set and have contributed numerous blends showcasing their individual styles through their unique nuances of flavor and aroma which have garnered awards and accolades at the highest levels all over the world.

“A Home for My Family”: The Philanthropic Initiative of Procigar

This year, Procigar, will continue with the charitable initiative, named “A Home for My Family”, a housing program that aims to help the most disadvantaged yet deserving employees of Procigar factories by providing the invaluable security of a decent and safe new home. The winners will be selected among low income families, that have children or elders in their household, with a precedent based on merit, need, and years worked at their respective factories. Together, with the collaboration of Espejo Constructora, a well-known building company located in Santiago, and the help of the Festival attendees, Procigar wants to change their lives by providing stability and a sense of wellbeing.