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The Columbus Lighthouse, Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic

Each night you can admire "white nights" in Santo Domingo, but it is not due to natural midnight sun phenomenon, but due to the Columbus Lighthouse (Spanish: Faro a Colon) 157 beams of light aimed into the sky. Faro a Colón is a cross-shaped structure, with 210 meters in length and 59 meters in width, symbolizing Christianity and the oldest and largest city of Antilles- Santo Domingo. A real miracle happens when night has come and gigantic glowing cross - the holy symbol of Christianity, appears in the sky! A grandiose monument of gray granite and reinforced concrete in the shape of a truncated pyramid was erected as tribute of Christopher Columbus. Made of white marble Columbus mausoleum with supposed remains is placed in the center of a cross structure. The monument, also a museum, houses a permanent collection of exhibits from each American country as well as other European and Asian countries.

The original idea of the Columbus lighthouse belongs to the Dominican writer and historian Don Antonio del Monte Y Tejada, who expressed it in his book "History of Santo Domingo", published in Havana in 1852. The idea became universally accepted during the 1923 celebration of the Fifth International Conference in Chile, when it was decreed that this monument should be built in cooperation by all governments and people of America. In 1931 Scottish architect Joseph Lea Gleave won the design competition among 455 participants from 48 countries. In 1948 the foundations of the monument were inaugurated, but growing instability in the country and the political situation made it impossible to resume construction until 1986. The construction was resumed under the supervision of the Dominican architect Teófilo Carbonell, completed in 1992, and cost approximately $70 million. Santo Domingo, founded in 1496 by Bartolommeo Columbus, was placed on UNESCO's World Heritage List.

By Lilit Khalatyan,



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