Monday, December 19, 2005

Cancun pulling out the stops for New Year trade

Once a popular destination for winter sun-seekers, the Mexican resort was virtually destroyed by Hurricane Wilma in October. Yet following an impressive rebuild operation 50% of the hotels in Cancun are expected to be open for business at the start of the New Year.

Whilst it is vital for the fate of the resort that tourists start returning, the most damage was done to Cancun's biggest attraction - the famous beach. Once 80m wide in places, this has dwindled to just 20m as the storms washed away the sand. Perversely it was the very construction of the hotels that made such devastation possible, as concrete foundations replaced the grassland that held together the complex structure.

Yet whilst there is concern that developers are following the same doomed path by throwing up new hotels on the same sites as those so recently destroyed, every effort is being taken to draw tourists back to the typically poor region, even to the extend that sand is being reclaimed from the sea and deposited back on the site of the famous beach.

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