Travel Weekly's Mexico E-letter: April 11, 2007

ACAPULCO announced plans for a mixed-use development that will include an 879-room business-oriented hotel, a performing arts center, convention space, a destination spa and restaurants. The Mundo Imperial project is expected to open in the spring of 2008. Developers are calling the hotel Casa Imperial, with no word yet on who might manage the property. The Expo Imperial component will include more than 360,000 square feet of meeting and exhibition space.

LA CASA QUE CANTA, a boutique hotel in Zihuatanejo, created its first-ever summer package, hoping to lure vacationers with prices that are 20% below rack rates. The package, valid from June 1 to Sept. 30, offers rates starting at $352 a night, single or double, when clients book seven nights or more. This rate includes a complimentary cooking class for two. A meal plan costs an additional $75 per person, per night. Discounted summer rates are available for stays of shorter length. To book or for information, call (888) 523-5050 or visit www.lacasaquecanta.com.

THE DREAMS AND SUNSCAPE resorts in Mexico are waiving the single supplement policy from May 1 to June 30 in an effort to encourage single parents to vacation at their resorts. In addition to waiving the single supplement, one child 11 years old and younger can stay free with their parent during the same time period.

THE MEXICO TOURISM BOARD said it would open a tourism marketing office in Washington, D.C. in May. The Washington office will be headed by Eduardo Chaillo. Although the Washington office will target all product segments, Chaillo said the office will focus its marketing efforts on meetings and conventions. The tourism board said it also planned to expand operations in its West Coast office in Los Angeles this year.

MEXICO CITY opened its first urban beach, sans the water, in a park originally built for the 1968 Olympics. Inspired by artificial beaches in European capitals Paris, Rome, Berlin and Amsterdam, the Mexico City beach is primarily intended for families who cant afford to vacation in Mexican beach destinations like Cancun or Acapulco. Mayor Marcelo Ebrard plans to build as many as four urban beaches next to lakes or in parks next to swimming pools. Mexico Citys first inner-city beach might not have the cachet of Paris artificial beach on the banks of the Seine, but it was packed with families soaking up the sun and playing volleyball during the Easter holiday.
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