Regional Office for Culture in Latin America and the Caribbean

Portal of Culture of Latin America and the Caribbean

Dominican Republic - Villa Mella

Villa Mella is known for preserving African cultural roots and heritage. One of the strongest expressions may be found in the local brotherhood, the Congos del Espíritu Santo, 300 years old.

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Other data of interest

Dominican Republic

Historical name

San Felipe de Villa Mella


Villa Mella, Santo Domingo Norte (North) , PC: 11201 .





Access level


Current Use


Original use

House of an organization known as the Hermandad (brotherhood) del Espíritu Santo de los Congos de Villa Mella

Property kind


Expressions of intangible heritage associated

One of the most significant expressions is the Afro-Dominican brotherhood of the Holy Spirit of Villa Mella, also known as the Congos de Villa Mella Brotherhood. This brotherhood is peculiar for its nature and functions, the ritual ceremonies in which its members take part and the music they play with their musical instruments at those ceremonies.

The Brotherhood of the Congos of the Espíritu Santo de Villa Mella has been inscribed since 2008 on the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity, originally proclaimed in 2001.

The territory also boasts a culinary tradition with the use of pork meat.