With New Luxury Hotels Opening in 2018, Los Cabos Focuses on Safety

by Cheryl Rosen
With New Luxury Hotels Opening in 2018, Los Cabos Focuses on Safety

Photo: Shutterstock.com


What’s a city to do when it has a modern new convention center and a wide range of beautiful new upscale hotels coming online, but the international press is full of negative stories hinting that its country is an unsafe destination?

In Los Cabos, Mexico, the hotels, private investors and local law enforcement think they have an answer. They are working together on a proactive plan to build their image and keep demand strong in 2018, which will see the opening of a Hard Rock, a Ritz Carlton Reserve, a Four Seasons, a Nobu, a Park Hyatt, a Starwood and a Montage property; almost 300 cruise stops; a new terminal at the airport; and new private villas from the Ritz Carlton with a starting sales price of $4 million. 

“Safety is always a challenge,” acknowledged Rodrigo Esponda of the Los Cabos Tourism Board at a press conference in New York last week. But with close to a billion dollars in investments coming online in 2018, “the private sector and the hotels are united and have a specific action plan to strengthen and integrate their efforts” to keep tourists safe.  

Increased surveillance, communication and training
The five-step plan includes 250 surveillance cameras on the single main road in the area, all connected into a command center manned by the police and the Marine Corps with a cutting-edge Rapid Response Communication System; and a training program that follows the Overseas Advisory Committee of the U.S. government.

“In a country where 90 percent of our economic activity is related to tourism, security has always been a priority,” Esponda said. But now more than ever “everyone is committed and united to get safety to the level where it needs to be.”

With its rebuilt convention center designed to hold 2,000 attendees scheduled to open in 2018, and the airlines increasing their seats by about 20 percent to handle the expected surge in visitors, “we know we have a particular challenge, and we have to act very fast,” Esponda said.  

In fact, the funding for the projects was remarkably easy to arrange, with both the public and private sectors doing their part. The new Marine Corps headquarters alone will cost $7 million and the Rapid Response System will be $47 million.

Getting the word out that Los Cabos is safe
The next few weeks will also see a two-pronged public relations plan. Aimed at both consumers and the travel agents to whom they are turning for advice, it is designed to get the word out that Los Cabos is not only beautiful, but also safe.

In Los Cabos, that seems to be a message that visitors have not been overly concerned about. RevPAR at Los Cabos hotels was actually up 17.4 percent between January and July; the average daily rate is a whopping $300 a room; and occupancy has been steady at 70 percent, Esponda said. But officials are starting to "see some concern" building, especially in the meetings and conventions sector, and they "want to be very proactive."

The first part of the campaign, aimed at consumers, will launch in November. For agents, Los Cabos offers a "Visit Los Cabos" training program and will have a team "that travels nonstop" to help with training and support. Agents in Milwaukee will get extra attention, as Los Cabos is launching a new route from there in partnership with Frontier Airlines and Apple Vacations.

With all of its properties smaller than 600 rooms and just one main road running the length of the peninsula, Los Cabos has always been relatively easy to police, Esponda said. "We control all the access," and while other cities have had problems with tainted liquor, "there's never been an issue with the drinks here."

And with more than $50 million dedicated to the new plan, Los Cabos intends to keep it that way.

  0
  0
Tip of the Day
Daily Top List

Safest Global Urban Neighborhoods for LGBTQ Travelers

1. Amsterdam’s Centrum neighborhood.

2. The Castro District in San Francisco.

3. Berlin’ s Schöneberg neighborhood.

4. Barcelona’s Eixample neighborhood.

5. Tel Aviv’s City Center.

Source: GeoSure

TMR THIS WEEK
http://services.travelsavers.com/AMGService.svc/REST/GetImage?ImageID=01e53f1d-84ba-e811-ba59-782bcb66a2f2

Here Are the ABCs of Guided Independent Travel

It's not escorted and it's not independent travel, so what's the lowdown on this increasingly popular guided independent travel segment?

TMR Recommendations
Top Stories
Cozumel Voted ‘Best Island Destination in Mexico and Central America’
Cozumel Voted ‘Best Island Destination in Mexico and Central America’

The World Travel Awards 2018 recognizes the Mexican Caribbean destination as a premier vacation spot.

Globus Family Rolls Out Cosmos Lite
Globus Family Rolls Out Cosmos Lite

One of the largest and oldest tour operators has introduced a new balance between structure and independence for its guests.

Chicago Hotel Workers’ Strike Continues
Chicago Hotel Workers’ Strike Continues

Twenty-six hotels are affected as the largest hotel workers' strike in Chicago’s history enters its second week.

Hilton and Playa Partner for 10 New All-Inclusive Resorts
Hilton and Playa Partner for 10 New All-Inclusive Resorts

Over the past decade, the all-inclusive resort segment has been rapidly expanding to include more luxury product, a trend that has been lucrative for the Caribbean.

Heritage Tours Opens Desert Encampment Luxury Experience
Heritage Tours Opens Desert Encampment Luxury Experience

A luxury tour provider has set up a private, high-end camp in the Northwestern Sahara Desert, taking intrepid travelers to a place they visit not because of what is there, but because of what is not there.

Five Reasons to Stay at the New Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Atlantic City
Five Reasons to Stay at the New Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Atlantic City

Music, wellness, dining, and the Boardwalk are among the tourism draws at New Jersey’s shoreline gaming mecca.

News Briefs
TMR Report Cards
Advertiser's Voice
Advertiser's Voice: Norwegian Cruise Line