Travel Weekly's Mexico E-letter: June 20, 2007

FOREIGN INVESTMENT in Mexico's hotel real estate sector has boomed, with a 941% increase since 2000 and no signs of a slowdown in the immediate future, according to joint research by Jones Lang LaSalle Hotels and Mexico's National Trust for Tourism Development (FONATUR). Foreign investors last year spent $640 million in Mexico's hotel industry, representing an annual compound growth rate of 135%. Spanish and U.S. companies have accounted for the lion's share of spending, totaling 99% during the last six years. During this time, Spanish investors have spent some $1.2 billion building, renovating and expanding hotels and resorts in Mexico, while American investors spent $609 million. During the last six years, Cancun and the Riviera Maya have attracted the bulk of foreign investment, together capturing $1 billion in investment, or 57% of the total spent in Mexico. The report estimates that foreign investment in Mexico's hotel sector will achieve an average of $900 million a year by 2009, double the three-year average achieved between 2004 and last year. A copy of the report is available at www.joneslanglasallehotels.com.

THE MARQUIS LOS CABOS Beach, Golf, Spa and Casitas Resort launched a four-night 4th of July package. Available from June 30 to July 9, the package costs $3,140 per person with accommodations in a one-bedroom Private Pool Casita. It includes a snorkel tour aboard the resort's new 80-foot schooner, one dinner for two at the resort's Vista Ballenas restaurant, daily continental breakfast and a $100 credit at Spa Marquis. Guests who stay in a Junior Suite pay $1,520 per person without the snorkel tour. To book, call (877) 238-9399 or visit www.marquisloscabos.com.

SPEAKING OF the Marquis Los Cabos, the resort announced that its chef, Thierry Dufour, received the Five Star Diamond Award for the third consecutive year and was named "One of the Finest Chefs Worldwide," by the American Academy of Hospitality Sciences. The Five Star Diamond Award recognizes Dufour's 20-seat French gourmet restaurant, Canto del Mar, at the Marquis Los Cabos. Dufour is the recipient of several culinary honors, including the prestigious Maitre Cuisinier de France. Dufour is also one of the main organizers of the annual Los Cabos Culinary Festival, which is scheduled this year from Dec. 1 to 8.

UNITED VACATIONS teamed with Palace Resorts in Mexico to offer a free Palace Passport for activities valued at more than $400. Customers must purchase a minimum three-night stay at any participating Palace property. In Cancun and the Riviera Maya, the passport includes a $50 per person voucher for a round of golf at the Moon Spa & Golf Club or the Playacar Spa & Golf Club, as well as a $25 per room voucher toward a rental car. To book, call (800) 328-6877 or visit www.vaxvacationaccess.com.

AEROMEXICO on July 9 will offer daily service from Austin to Mexico City. Flights will depart Austin at 3 p.m. and arrive in Mexico City at 5:10 p.m. Flights from Mexico City will depart at noon and arrive in Austin at 2:10 p.m.

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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