Mazatlán: visitor numbers are up. Mazatlán: visitor numbers are up.

Mazatlán transformed: it ‘needed a shake-up’

Governor says beach destination is getting a new urban image

The Pacific coast city of Mazatlán is undergoing a much-needed transformation, according to the Sinaloa state governor, one that will include hosting Mexico’s premier tourism event in 2018.

Quirino Ordaz Coppel made the observation at a lead-up tourism industry event yesterday where he also handed out awards to 13 commercial and media partners in recognition of their work to promote and support the destination.

“You are watching the transformation that Mazatlán is undergoing because we’re interested in giving a new face, a new urban image [to the city] because it needed a real shake-up,” he said.

Ordaz added that the city’s mayor and residents were also key contributors to the process.

He told the dozens of tourism operators and promoters present that he looked forward to seeing them again next year at Mexico’s most important tourism event, the Tianguis Turístico that will be held in Mazatlán from April 16 to 19.

International tourism to the destination is up over 8% this year, according to state Tourism Secretary Marco Antonio Garcia, and more than half a million tourists visited the destination during the summer period, a 13% increase over last year’s figures.

More international direct flights are arriving in the city, especially on a seasonal basis, and several new hotels are currently under construction including Courtyard by Marriott, Radisson Park Inn and an Ibis hotel, according to the Mazatlán Tourist Board.

The city’s historic center is also experiencing a resurgence and some visitors are including visits to the state’s magical towns on their itineraries.

The former CEO of the Mexican Tourism Board agreed with the governor’s remarks, adding that it was something that was long needed in the port city that is sometimes referred to as the Pearl of the Pacific.

“This is an admirable story that we need to communicate to the whole world and through you, who are our commercial partners [and] our allies, we ask that you help us communicate this great event that is happening in Mazatlán,” Rodolfo López Negrete said.

The director of Best Day Travel, which won an award for its internet-based travel agency services, said the new face of Mazatlán made it capable of competing against any other tourism destination in the country, adding that the beach city had become one of the company’s top sellers.

“. . . Today it’s practically at the same level as Los Cabos,” Julián Balbuena said.

Source: Milenio (sp), PR Web (en)

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