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Opening of upscale hotels marks turning point in Haiti's reconstruction

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A Best Western Premier is scheduled to open its doors in January, and the newly reincarnated El Rancho is set to follow in February under the management of the Spanish group NH Hoteles.

A Marriott hotel, opening in partnership with telecom service provider Digicel, will have its official groundbreaking next week in downtown Port-au-Prince, and Comfort Inn is already in the process of taking over management of an existing hotel in the southern tourist city of Jacmel.

The Oasis boasts 128 rooms and suites, restaurants, retail shops and a conference center. An evening in the Royal Club Presidential Suite will set you back well over $1,000, with butler service included.

Haiti is the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere, still struggling to recover from a devastating earthquake in January 2010 that killed an estimated 250,000 people and left more than 1 million homeless.

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