Here comes the sun…
Hurricane Patricia huffed and puffed as it approached Mexico’s Pacific coast but in the end what was being billed as the most powerful hurricane ever largely fizzled, barely putting a dent in the area’s tourist trade.
“It was very benevolent to us,” Francisco Cordova, tourism secretary for the state of Sinaloa — which includes popular Mazatlan among its destinations – told Canadian Travel Press. “We weren’t affected whatsoever.”
Patricia’s advance brought back memories of Hurricane Odile, which hit Los Cabos last year, and the ensuing damage left some hotels still closed more than a year later.
But there were no reported deaths and little damage as a result of Patricia, which came ashore in the state of Colima, where the governor said total damage was less than US$200,000, way below Odile’s figure.
Roberto Rivera of El Cid Resorts – which has four Mazatlan properties – and the Mazatlan Hotel Association said Mazatlan “didn’t even have rain. We had a beautiful day [when Patricia came ashore].”
Tourists weren’t evacuated from Mazatlan as Patricia neared the coast.
Farther south, Puerto Vallarta saw its airport temporarily shut down and tourists were placed in shelters before Patricia made landfall on the coast but emergency measures were quickly halted when authorities realized that “Hurricane Patricia would not be touching the city and was no longer a threat,” tourism authorities said.
Bordering Riviera Nayarit said that it saw no damage to its tourism infrastructure, with all having “returned to normalcy” within hours of Patricia moving ashore farther south.
“Please rest assured we have managed the situation properly and that the present and future visitors of Puerto Vallarta and Riviera Nayarit will enjoy tranquility and our signature warm hospitality and security,” the tourism boards for both the Riviera Nayarit and Puerto Vallarta said in a joint statement.
Transat in turn issued a statement saying that safety of clients in Puerto Vallarta and the Riviera Nayarit was “top priority” and all its tourism operations for the region quickly resumed.