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Residence Dion



The Institut de Sauvegarde du Patrimoine National - ISPAN - in partnership with the Association Touristique d'Haïti, and the Association "Les Anneaux de la Mémoire", based in Nantes, are proposing a project to enhance the ruins of the Dion colonial house. This development project is part of a more global project dedicated to reforestation and the support of a local and sustainable economy.

Ruins: exceptional vestiges of the past

These ruins, the most beautiful and complete ones found to date, are located on the summit of the Matheux mountain range, at an altitude of 1,208 meters and about an hour and a half from the town of Cabaret. Overlooking the entire Artibonite plain, this magnificent dwelling is part of an area classified as a National Historical Park, under the high protection of the Ministries of Tourism, Culture and Environment. The Habitation Dion, which was a prosperous establishment until the end of the 18th century, is an exceptional example of a colonial coffee house in Santo Domingo and a rare vestige to show what slavery was like on these plantations located far from the city, in an area of predilection for marooning.

The restoration and preservation of the site

The Tourist Association of Haiti, in collaboration with the Institute for the Preservation of National Heritage and the Interministerial Council for Land Management, has begun a vast project to safeguard and develop these ruins and this site. Les Anneaux de la Mémoire is collaborating with the Haitian Tourist Association on this heritage project.


This development of this site of memory, while waiting for a complete and identical restoration of the ruins and consequent archaeological excavations, will not only create a tourist and cultural destination of great value, but also create jobs and improve the living conditions of the inhabitants of the local section of Délices where the Habitation Dion is located.


- First archaeological excavation - Carried out in 2012

- Restoration and reactivation of the water tanks (photo on the right) - Work done in 2017-2018

- Rehabilitation of the access road - Work carried out in 2017

- Rehabilitation of the stairs of the slaves' quarter - Work carried out in 2017

- Signage on the site in 4 languages (Haitian Creole, French, Spanish, English) - Implemented since 2017.


- Interpretation of the site in 4 languages (Haitian Creole, French, Spanish, English)

- Restoration of the slave quarter.

- Reforestation and reforestation of the site - Cultivation of coffee in an organic and sustainable agriculture approach. 

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The restoration and preservation of biodiversity

The restoration of the site also involves the restoration of the vegetation cover of these mountains.  The objective is to replant and cultivate coffee in a sustainable and organic approach.

The Arcadin Coast, which has several facilities that invite visitors to enjoy the beaches and sun, will be able to offer unique hikes to the Habitation Dion and other nearby memorial sites.

A fulcrum for local, economic, social and sustainable development

This project contributes directly to the improvement of the tourist offer in the western department, to fight poverty and to support local economic activity.

This project contributes to the preservation of cultural diversity by highlighting a little-known local history and its insertion into global history. It networks and mobilizes various actors who are not used to working together, both from the private and public sectors, and ensures the involvement of women in order to promote gender equality. Finally, it ensures the involvement of the local population and the training of guides from the region to promote equal opportunities for this isolated population.

In 2017 solar distribution kits were distributed to families living on the site by Haitian partners.

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The association provided financial support of €20,000 in 2016 and 2017, and logistical support for the assembly of the project to the Tourist Association of Haiti, which is responsible for this project.

A phase was carried out in 2017 as part of the TOSTEM/Mémoires libérées program supported by the European Union (ACP Culture+ Program) and carried by Les Anneaux de la Mémoire. It consisted of cleaning and development work on the site to facilitate access and allow visitors to better understand its history. Clean-up and development work was carried out with the mobilization of the people living around the site, a community that is highly isolated and lacks access to basic services.

In 2019 the association organized a large event of support for this project and collected €25,000 in donations and grants.


2,500 coffee trees and 500 trees have been planted thanks to your support !

Continuing its work with the actors on site, the Anneaux de la Mémoire were able to finance, thanks to you and the City of Nantes, the planting of 2,500 coffee trees and 500 trees in March 2020. It is the success of this event, organized in Nantes in March 2019, with the support and presence of Jean-Marc Ayrault, President of the Foundation for the Remembrance of Slavery, the City of Nantes and the Pays-de-la-Loire Region that has allowed to collect 25,000 euros in donations and grants for this project.

In 2020, the Museum of History of Nantes - Castle of the Dukes of Brittany has chosen to promote this project during the event « Expression(s) Décoloniale(s) #2 » (postponed to May 2021 due to the health crisis) via a call for donations from visitors.

Learn more about the house and this project

Consult the bulletin of the Heritage Preservation Institute

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