Tourism is big business in Mexico - the nation’s fifth-largest revenue stream,to be exact – and by the end of 2018 it will play an even greater role in the nation’s economy,becoming its third-largest source of revenue as the number of international visitors continues to grow and new infrastructure projects are completed. In addition,foreign direct investment in Mexico is growing by leaps and bounds,with a record number of new hotel openings and a $600 million dollar investment plan from Apple Leisure Group announced this July.
“Tourism’s participation in Mexican gross domestic product will climb 100 basis points to 9.4 percent by the end of President Enrique Peña Nieto’s administration,” stated Mexico’s Tourism Minister Claudia Ruiz Massieu according to Bloomberg Businessweek. “We received a record 24 million international visitors last year,or 2.6 percent more than the 23.4 million tourists it received in 2011.”
And this trend shows no sign of slowing down,as 2013 tourism numbers continue to rise and the number of hotel openings increases. Furthermore,the Mexican government has pledged to invest at least $23.3 billion in the nation’s infrastructure by the end of this year. Ruiz Massieu said Mexico is determined to continue building new airports,seaports,railways and highways to link well known transportations hubs – such as Cancun – with lesser-known tourism destinations – such as Tulum real estate.
Most recently,Apple Leisure Group announced that it would invest at least $600 million to fund six projects in Mexico’s Quintana Roo,Baja California Sur and Jalisco states. The investment will reportedly expand the variety of hotel offerings in Cancun,the Riviera Maya,Tulum,Cozumel,Cabo San Lucas and Puerto Vallarta. According to Peña Nieto,“Mexico will become a world tourism power” and “a destination for global investment.” The investment will also create more than 4,000 new jobs and will include three new hotels in Tulum alone,totaling more than $360 million.
Hilton Worldwide will also open two new hotels in Mexico by 2016,while Hosted Villas has expanded its portfolio to include 19 villa properties in Puerto Vallarta,the Riviera Maya’s Isla Mujeres and Punta Mita. In addition,Starwood Hotels & Resorts has debuted its luxurious Aloft brand in Cancun this year,which marks its 25th opening in Mexico,while the Delano Los Cabos resort and a new Ritz-Carlton Reserve property have been announced for Cabo San Lucas. Other developments currently under construction include the new Secrets Los Cabos,the Hyatt Place La Paz at CostaBaja and a multimillion-dollar renovation that is underway at Barceló Riviera Maya.
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