Travel Weekly's Mexico E-letter: Aug. 16, 2006

PRIVATE INVESTORS have pumped some $11.6 billion into Mexico's tourism industry in the last six years, exceeding goals set by the federal government for the same period by almost 30%, according to Sectur, Mexico's Ministry of Tourism. In fact, the original tourism investment goal of $9 billion for the 2001 to 2006 period was surpassed in June 2005, after increasing some 12% a year since 2002, Sectur reported. If all goes as planned, domestic and foreign private investment in the nation's hotels, airports and tourism attractions is projected to surpass $12 billion by the end of this year. International investors accounted for 25% of the spending during this period, with U.S.-based companies accounting for the lion's share of foreign private money. Spanish-based companies ranked second among foreign investors.

 

NOT SURPRISINGLY, Mexico's beach destinations are the most popular places for investors to spend their money, with destinations like Acapulco; Cancun and the Riviera Maya; and Puerto Vallarta accounting for the bulk of spending. The top three areas of investment accounting for almost 52% of the $11.6 billion in the last six years were Guerrero State ($2.6 billion), where 89% of private investment took place in Acapulco; Quintana Roo State ($2.47 billion), where 82% of investment was channeled to Cancun and the Riviera Maya; and Nayarit State ($92.5 million), where more than 60% of private investment went to the Pacific Coast resort town of Nuevo Vallarta. Together, the Mexican states on the U.S.-Mexico border, including Chihuahua, Coahuila, Nuevo Leon and Tamaulipas, garnered 19% of private investment during this period. Among these state's top tourist attractions are the Copper Canyon in Chihuahua, the La Quemada archeological sites in Zacatecas, the bustling city of Monterrey in Nuevo Leon and the 200,000-acre Cuatro Cienegas Valley in Coahuila.

GRUPO PRESIDENTE is promoting the upcoming reopening of the Presidente InterContinental Cozumel Resort & Spa as Cozumel's first ever five-star resort. The reopening "is seen as a major step by Grupo Presidente and is considered the beginning of the transformation and re-positioning of Cozumel as an up-market, luxury destination," Grupo Presidente said in a statement. The 220-room resort is scheduled to open in October, following a top-to-bottom $25 million renovation to completely redesign guest rooms and the creation of an Ocean Suites with unobstructed views of the Caribbean. All of the resort's rooms will include wide-screen plasma TVs and upscale furnishings and amenities. New facilities will include a full-service spa, a golf putting green and a PADI-certified scuba diving center. For information or reservations, call (800) 327-0200 or visit www.intercontinental.com/cozumel.

IN HONOR OF HOTEL FIRM Sol Melia's 50th anniversary, Travel Impressions is offering agents who book a participating Sol Melia resort in Mexico a $50 commission bonus, in addition to the agent's regular commission. The promotion is valid for bookings of a minimum of five nights made through Sept. 15 for travel through Dec. 23. To qualify, bookings must include Travel Impressions' Cancel For Any Reason travel insurance. Participating properties are: Gran Melia Mexico Reforma, Melia Azul Ixtapa, Melia Cabo Real, Melia Cozumel, Melia Puerto Vallarta and Paradisus Playa Conchal. In addition, Web bookings qualify for an additional 1% commission. For information or reservations, call (800) 284-0044 or visit www.travelimpressions.com.

FUNJET VACATIONS is promoting a Fall Fare Savings Sale with packaged air fares starting at $150 per person, roundtrip. Sample vacations to Puerto Vallarta from Chicago with three nights at the Riu Jalisco start at $480, including the $150 roundtrip air fare. This package is valid for an Aug. 31 departure on Aeromexico. Fall Fare packages include roundtrip air fare, hotel accommodations, roundtrip airport transfers and 24-hour traveler assistance. Packages must be booked by Aug. 24. For information or reservations, call Funjet at (800) 558-3050 or visit www.vaxvacationaccess.com.

Mexico E-Letter Editor:

Jorge Sidron

Phone: (973) 898-0011

[email protected]

For promotional opportunities in the E-letters, contact [email protected].

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