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The Dominican Republic, which became independent in 1844, has prospered in recent years due to a robust agricultural sector and a large tourism industry.
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Dominican Resort Official Says Misinformation About Fatal Incidents Are Damaging Their Reputation

Several cases about the deaths of American tourists in the Dominican Republic has prompted a hotel chain to speak out, claiming their reputation and image has been tarnished.

In a statement to news outlet Dominican Today, the Piñero Group says their employees have received threats after it was reported that three people died at their hotel chains. The Bahia Principe Bouganville in San Pedro de Macoris was named in an American death last month when Miranda Schaup-Werner died of a heart attack on May 25.

Almost a week later, Maryland couple Cynthia Ann Day, 49, and Nathaniel Edward Holmes, 63, were found dead inside their hotel room at the nearby Grand Bahia Principe La Romana. Both causes of death happened to be related to "hemorrhaging, pulmonary edema and enlarged hearts," The Washington Post reports.

Two other deaths have also been reported at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Punta Cana. In April, 67-year-old Robert Bell Wallace died suddenly during his stay. Family of David Harrison, 45, who also died at the resort last July have now questioned his death. Both reportedly died of heart attacks.

The FBI has stepped in to provide “technical assistance with the toxicology reports,” a state department official tells the Post.

While the Piñero Group didn't specify what misinformation was spread, they assured that they are working with authorities and have the safety of their guests and staff.

"As a result of the erroneous information that has been published, with which we do not agree, Bahia Principe Hotels & Resorts has suffered great damage to its image and reputation," the statement reads.  "Serious insults and threats have been imposed on some of our more than 15,000 employees and their families, who are the backbone of our company and for whom we can not remain on the sidelines. We reiterate our firm commitment to cooperate fully with the authorities and we expect a quick resolution of your consultations and actions, and we will not make any other statements that could interfere with them."

In a news conference last week, tourism officials said the deaths might be coincidence noting that nothing like it has happened in the country before. “Sometimes in life, there can be a law of sequences,” Francisco Javier Garcia, the country’s minister of tourism, said Thursday (Jun 6). “Sometimes, nothing may happen to you in a year. But in another week, three things might happen to you.”

“This is something that … has never happened before in our country,” Paola Rainieri, president of Asonahores, the Dominican Republic Hotel and Tourism Association, added. “Really, we’re a safe destination.”

Read the full statement from the Piñero Group below.

With regard to the two unfortunate events that took place in the Dominican Republic, and after various media, digital platforms and social networks disseminated, reposted or distributed false information, Bahia Príncipe Hotels & Resorts wishes to express its profound respect to the authorities and investigations in progress.

We reiterate our firm commitment to cooperate fully with the authorities and we expect a quick resolution of your consultations and actions, and we will not make any other statements that could interfere with them.

As a result of the erroneous information that has been published, with which we do not agree, Bahia Principe Hotels & Resorts has suffered great damage to its image and reputation. Serious insults and threats have been imposed on some of our more than 15,000 employees and their families, who are the backbone of our company and for whom we can not remain on the sidelines.

For 24 years, Bahia Principe Hotels & Resorts has operated in the Dominican Republic, which is one of the most internationally recognized destinations, and receives 7 million tourists from around the world annually. In the Dominican Republic, we have 14 hotels and more than 7,100 rooms, which makes us the largest hotel brand in the total number of hotel beds in the country. We welcome approximately 700,000 people each year.

The safety and comfort of our guests and staff is the core of our company’s values and works daily to ensure it. All of our properties in the Dominican Republic possess some of the most prestigious certifications in the industry, including Travelife certifications at the Gold level, as well as a Global Reputation Index (GRI) of 90 percent.

We reiterate that we totally disagree with the dissemination of false information published publicly that endangers the image and reputation of the company and the integrity and rights of our employees and their families, reserving, when necessary, the right to undertake the adequate legal action.

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Dimitrios Kambouris

Rihanna Stuns At Fenty Pop-Up Event In New York City

That Rihanna reign just won’t let up.

Less than a month after launching her Fenty collection in Paris, Rihanna is expanding her pop-up shop to New York City. The Grammy winner attended the NYC opening at The Webster SOHO Tuesday (June 18) sporting a hot pink mini-dress and freshly done auburn-colored braids, complemented by turquoise accessories.

Rihanna's size-inclusive luxury clothing line comes just in time for summer with brightly colored bodycon dresses, graphic T-shirts, snakeskin heels, and glitzy accessories, according to Billboard.

The first installment of the Fenty collection, showcasing structured denim looks, corset dresses, strappy spiral sandals, pleated pants and fanny packs, became available for sale via Fenty.com on May 19.

Rihanna outlined her unconventional design vision to the  T, The New Times Style Magazine last month.“I want to be as disruptive as possible,” she explained of breaking free from the conventional fashion schedule. “The brand is not traditional. There is no runway show. It's a new way of doing things because I believe that this is where fashion is going to go eventually."

The NYC Fenty pop-up shop, which is described as a “two-story immersive experience,” will be open to the public from Jun 19 until Jun 30.

See photos below.

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Ed Sheeran Taps Cardi, 50 Cent, H.E.R. And More For New Album

Ed Sheeran is commissioning a star-studded roster for his upcoming album, No.6 Collaborations Project. 50 Cent, Cardi B, Khalid, Meek Mill, H.E.R., Travis Scott, Stormzy, Young Thug, Justin Bieber, Chance the Rapper and PNB Rock are among the packed list of collaborations.

The British pop crooner released the track list last month, but debuted the full list of features via Instagram Tuesday (June 18).

Sheeran teams with Chance the Rapper and PNB Rock for the recently released single “Cross Me,” and Bieber on an acoustic offering of his new single, “I Don’t Care.”

“I’m a huge fan of all of the artists I worked with on the album,” the singer-songwriter said in a statement according to Rolling Stone. “Whether I’ve been following them since the beginning of their careers, or had their albums on repeat, they’re artists that inspire me and all bring something special to each track. Can’t wait for you to hear it!”

No. 6 Collaborations Project is due out July 6.

See the track list below.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

Thanks to all the amazing artists I’ve worked with on this record for sharing your talent with me. No.6 Collaborations Project comes out on July 12, hope you like it as much as I do @travisscott @thegr8khalid @camila_cabello @iamcardib @chancetherapper @pnbrock @stormzy @yebbasmith @justinbieber @eminem @50cent @youngthug @theuglygram @ellamai @paulolondra @santandave @hermusicofficial @meekmill @artisthbtl @skrillex @brunomars @chrisstapleton

A post shared by Ed Sheeran (@teddysphotos) on Jun 18, 2019 at 11:06am PDT

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XXXTentacion Documentary Trailer Released, Fans Mark One-Year Anniversary Of Rapper’s Death

Fans will soon get a behind-the-scenes looks at the life of XXXTentacion.  To commemorate the one-year anniversary of his death, the slain rapper’s estate announced a new documentary and forthcoming posthumous album, Spin reports.

The chilling documentary trailer released Tuesday (June 18), includes an eerie message from the Florida native born, Jahseh Dwayne Onfroy.

“There’s definitely a difference between Jahseh Onfroy and XXXTentacion,” he says in the clip. “This is the story, this is the full story. And this is the last time I will tell it.”

XXXTentacion’s mother, Cleopatra Bernard,  marked the somber anniversary by sharing a photo of their final phone call, which took place hours before he was shot and killed.

 

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My hearts forever shattered 💔 6/18/18 last phone call.

A post shared by @ cleo_ohsojazzy on Jun 17, 2019 at 9:20pm PDT

Fans and fellow artists shared dedications to XXXTentacion on social media, and others flocked to the Florida  mausoleum where he’s buried.

One year ago 💔#LLJ #LLj🕊 #xxxtentacion pic.twitter.com/P6IT3sDGSu

— AssassinLord444🧛🏼‍♂️ (@AssassinLord44) June 17, 2019

tomorrow will mark the day , X life was taken from him. you miss you man.

I want to link up tomorrow @ a park in play music & smoke for jah ! if you in California! Pull up ! Let’s barbecue let’s have fun ! we miss you jah ! #xxxtentacion

— sincerely, tokyo 🎌 (@madeintyo) June 17, 2019

i can’t even begin to believe its been a year??? where the hell did time go? no, it can’t have been a year already😭 miss him so much. but i know he’s still with us. i really can feel it. his energy. his name will live FOREVER. also... here’s my fave edit... #xxxtentacion pic.twitter.com/DxC7dD2od9

— sabina!-🦋 (@fvcknxxx) June 18, 2019

The 20-year-old recording artist was gunned down in South Florida on June 18, 2018. Six months later, XXXTentacion’s estate released his third studio album, Skins. He went on to win a posthumous American Music Award and BET Award.

Watch the documentary trailer in the video above.

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