Weekend travelers to Mazatlán beware: if you haven’t booked accommodation you might be out of luck for the rest of the summer. The famed tourist destination on the coast of Sinaloa is currently at 100% occupancy, reported Ricardo Velarde Cárdenas, the local official responsible for tourism.
The city is experiencing a record high number of tourists this summer, with 100% occupancy in hotels and rental properties from Thursday to Sunday from now until mid-August. Monday-to-Wednesday occupancy rates currently stand at 80%.
From the United States alone there were over 2 million visitors to Mexico in the first four months of 2022, many traveling for the first time post-COVID. The local Chamber of Commerce expects 577,000 visitors before the end of the summer holidays in comparison to the 398,253 visitors during the same period last year.
Velarde said tourism will bring an estimated 3.5 billion pesos (US $172 million) flowing into the city this summer, which will be a historic high for a single season. Effects of the massive influx of tourists can be seen in the long lines to get into clubs and restaurants as well as increased demand to visit local sites like El Quelite or La Noria, and take catamaran rides out to the nearby Isla de Piedra.
There are 20,000 rooms available in Mazatlán between hotels, apartments, and Airbnbs. Velarde said that by the end of the season 13 hotels currently under construction will be added to the market to create an additional 11,000 rooms.
“We are at the height of the summer season. The major limiting factor is the number of hotel rooms in Mazatlán, more so than flights, which have actually been very good,” he said.
Increased tourism has been a boon for this seaside destination where the economy largely depends on summer guests. Since COVID began the city has seen successive drops in visitor numbers but there are hopes that this season will see a return to previous numbers.