Details emerge of plans to restore Cancún beaches

January 16th, 2006 by Steve Bridger filed under Cancún Beach Recovery, Cancún

Tourism Minister Rodolfo Elizondo Torres will be in Cancún today to oversee the start of the ambitious project to recover miles of beaches lost to Wilma.

As I reported last month, around four miles (6.5km) of the area’s fifteen miles of beaches were swept away during the hurricane. At least another five miles suffered severe erosion.

Details of the project have been difficult to obtain, but more information is expected to be released today.

However, I understand that beach restoration will start from the Westin Resort at the southern end of Hotel Zone (Punta Nizuc), and work north towards Punta Cancún. (View a map).

Engineers will try to ensure that disturbance to hotel guests is kept to a minimum.

Leticia Rosado, Chief Concierge at the Omni Cancún told me Friday that the beaches along the open Caribbean side of the Hotel Zone, although eroded, are not in too bad a state from the Fiesta Americana Condesa down past the Omni, through to "El Mirador".

"There are also pockets of good sand appearing elsewhere," she added.

The beaches on the leeward side of the island (the short part of the ‘No.7′ shape, protected by Isla Mujeres), are much better for swimming. There are some particularly good beaches along the section from Punta Cancún (the bend in the ’7′) back towards downtown through to the Presidente Intercontinental, and in other small spots going up through "Playa Linda / Embarcadero".

Meanwhile, I continue to receive feedback from travellers returning from their holidays in Cancún.

Doug Nakatomi took his family to the resort last week. A member of staff at the Royal Sunset, where he stayed, told him that "the hotel hadn’t waited for insurance to pay out and had just started rebuilding."

"The beach was much smaller than before Wilma," Doug added, "but we still had good times playing on it."

Another traveller, Jeff Schultz, was full of praise for the Riu Caribe, which is located on the leeward side, where the beaches were less affected by erosion.

"The hotel was operating more or less at 100 per cent," said Jeff. "There were still workers around adding finishing touches, but everything was top notch."

But he also told me that there were people in his van (from the airport) with confirmed reservations with Travelocity at the JW Marriot resort, which is closed until June! Not surprisingly, they were a little upset!

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3 Responses to “Details emerge of plans to restore Cancún beaches”

  1. Global Voices Online » Blog Archive » Mexico: Cancún’s Restoration Says:

    [...] Both Steve Bridger of and Danna Harman of the Christian Science Monitor go over Cancún’s plans to get back on its feet after Hurricane Wilma devastated the tourist city three months ago. [...]

  2. » Blog Archive » Hoteliers threaten reluctant insurers with legal action Says:

    [...] On Monday, during his stop in the resort for the start of the beach recovery project, Tourism Minister Rodolfo Elizondo Torres angered hoteliers by suggesting that some hotels had not kept up with premium payments and others had exaggerated claims of damage to property. "The government," he said, "could not intervene in what were ‘personal’ disagreements." [...]

  3. » Blog Archive » Cancún’s beaches should start to get fresh sand from Jan. 30th Says:

    [...] Operations will start at the Hilton Cancún Golf & Spa Resort and move south, in the direction of Punta Nizuc. (A change of plan from the one I reported on Jan. 16th) [...]