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Rocky Point (Puerto Penasco): News Archives

Interested in reading old articles about Puerto Penasco? You are welcome to read our news archives

Archive for June, 2007

Today's Daily Star covers the absurdly long wait times at the Lukeville border:
A fivefold increase in visitors to Rocky Point since 2001 has created a logjam on Sunday evenings at the pint-sized Lukeville port of entry that isn't designed to handle the mad rush home. Lines stretch miles into Mexico and waits balloon to one to two hours on regular Sundays. On holiday weekends, the wait can be six to eight hours.

Officials are expecting thousands to head south on the two holiday weekends that sandwich the Fourth of July. The key to avoiding the long lines for those making the trip? You may not like the answer.

Here's a link to the whole story:Driving down to Rocky Point a lot easier than getting back.

And, for those of you that missed it, here is a bit of their previous crossing coverage

Rocky Point Mexico I'd just like to point out that the largest - and quite possibly, the most interesting one I've posted so far - issue of De Frente just went online over at defrente.puerto-penasco.com.

This edition is pretty big - at eight stories - and every single one is worth reading.

They say that if you want to know a place - a town, a nation, even a street - then you make a point to pick up its newspaper and get acquainted. For those of you that want to know more about Puerto Peñasco - a town whose very identity is changing at a breakneck pace - there's probably no single better starting point then De Frente.

In this issue: the National Workers Union - protesting the ongoing problem of preserving the public's access to the beaches amidst all the beach privitazation - tore down a fence blocking access to Hermosa Beach and occupied the site to make their greivances known. And then they all got arrested.

There's also the Malecon and the Don Colosio plaza getting razed - again - to beautify it for an upcoming governor's conference, the ongoing saga of Peñasco's water struggles, the history of De Frente, and the Proyecto Sonora, among other stories - all available at defrente.puerto-penasco.com.

The current requirement is to have a passport starting January 2008 in order to return to the USA when traveling by land from Mexico, that date may change.

Continue Reading Add comment Reservations At The Point

From the Arizona Daily Star:
Sonora aims to reassure investors from Arizona
Sonora has become the first state in Mexico to enact a licensing requirement for real estate agents, which may include criminal-background checks in select U.S. states, including Arizona.

Because the majority of Sonora's foreign real estate investors are from Arizona, state regulators applauded the new law, which was unveiled at the Arizona-Mexico Commission meeting Thursday.

Investing in Mexico is safe, officials insisted, but while safeguards are in place, it's up to buyers to exercise common sense.

Here's the full story.

I have to hand it to the Daily Star, they're suddenly all over anything to do with Sonora:
Puerto Penasco
MESA - A new Web site is warning people who plan on driving into Mexico about construction work, severe weather, road closures and car accidents.

The Arizona Department of Transportation recently launched the site, http://www.az511.gov/Sonora, to report details about traffic tie-ups in the Mexican state of Sonora, which borders Arizona. ...

The site, modeled after one that has long been posting traffic information for drivers in Arizona, is thought to be the first international project of its type in the United States.

D'Angelo said the transportation department also plans to add information in the next few months about how long the wait is at border crossings.

(Here's the whole story)

This is a nice tool for the Sonora traveler - although it's worth noting that live-ish border crossing times are already available - thanks to the US Customs And Border Protection website.

Along those same lines: it's a pretty common thing to gripe about the wait times at the border, but Terry over at playa-encanto.com has been proactive in drumming up support to try and convince folks to ask the Arizona Department of Transportation to allocate resources towards expanding the Lukeville entry with a few more lanes. There's some promising back and forth between him and AzDOT posted on the playa-encanto.com site that's worth checking out.

Speaking hypothetically here, I don't see how they can affort not to expand that crossing over the next few years. With the boom in Sonoran tourism - not to mention the coastal highway coming online - that Lukeville-to-Phoenix corridor is only going to get a heck of a lot busier. AzDOT's done a pretty good job of fixing up the actual roads over the last ten years, so one hopes that putting some resources into the port of entry itself is next on the list.

First, from the Daily Star ...

The attorney for a Puerto Penasco hotel-condominium owner will appeal an Arizona Department of Real Estate order against his client, he said Wednesday.

Roberto Salazar said he will file the appeal within 30 days on behalf of Ignacio Chavez Moran, owner of Fiesta de Cortez Hotel Urbanizadora Vacacional de Puerto Peñasco in Sonora.

On May 22, the Arizona Department of Real Estate issued a "cease and desist" order against Chavez Moran after nearly a dozen local investors reported losing more than $370,000 in deposits and down payments.

Salazar denied the charges and said the contracts were signed in Sonora and only two were "ratified" in Tucson.

...He said his client is aware of only four complaints from condo owners and is working with them, and he said they continue to have access to their property. Salazar said client confidentiality prevented him from discussing specifics of the dispute...

Again, here's the whole article.
There's also - Passport rules to be eased temporarily:
The Bush administration plans to suspend some of its new, post-September 11 requirements for traveling abroad, hoping to placate Congress and summer travelers who've had their vacation plans thwarted by delays in processing their passport applications...

The proposal would temporarily lift a requirement that U.S. passports be used for air travel to and from Canada, Mexico, the Caribbean and Bermuda, several lawmakers said Thursday.

The suspension would allow the State Department to catch up with a massive surge in applications that has overwhelmed passport processing centers since the rule took effect this year.

The resulting backlog has caused up to three-month delays for passports and ruined or delayed the travel plans of thousands of Americans.

Not much of an impact for those of us headed to Penasco, by car, but that's the first time I've heard the 'three month passport backlog' mentioned.
There's also a brief followup on the CEDO situation in this week's Tucson Weekly:
As the dozers backed off, lawyers got into the skirmish, and today, nearly one year later, there's an agreement in place to both preserve CEDO and allow the Clifton-Meridian Development Co. to build condos on the side and in front of the station ...

The land dispute is now resolved, but there's a catch: CEDO needs to raise a quarter-million dollars by the end of the year to cover the cost of the settlement, the legal bills and other associated expenses, says Boyer.

Here's the whole article, but it's mostly a rehash of old news.

See also their 'Going South' tidbit, where the Tucson Weekly discovers that ... (drumroll) ... there is often a long wait at the U.S. border.

If they're just now finding that out, they need to get out more.

Here's a bunch of interesting news, from both local sources and some more traditional outlets. Rocky Point First up, brand new from De Frente:
  • Car theft on the rise in Peñasco
  • Police stop, seize ATVs driven by speeding minors
  • Port Captain Issues Hurricane Season Warnings
  • It Won't Be Easy To Ensure Beach Access - But Something Must Be Done
  • Mexidata.info is carrying a pretty zany story whose title speaks for itself: Mexican “Telenovelas” a Big Hit in China.

    Turns out, for some weird reason, telenovelas translate really well into the Chinese marketplace, possibly because 'telenovelas deal ... with family, moral and social issues in a way the that Chinese could relate to'. Televisa, the largest producer of the telenovela genre, just signed a partnership deal with China Central Television to adapt and create a bunch of new telenovela content for the Chinese market.

    Globalization certainly bears some weird looking fruit :)

    Tim Mello just zinged this alert my way:

    The AZ. Department Of Real Estate has issued a cease and desist against FIESTA DE CORTEZ HOTEL URBANIZADORA VACACIONAL DE PUERTO PENASCO, S.A.,DE C.V. in response to complaints ...

    Arizona Department of Real Estate announced today (5/30/07) that a CEASE and DESIST ORDER and a Notice of Right to Request Hearing was issued on May 21,2007 against IGNACIO CHAVEZ-MORAN (an unlicensed individual) and FIESTA DE CORTEZ HOTEL URBANIZADORA VACACIONAL DE PUERTO PENASCO, S.A.,DE C.V. (a foreign corporation and unlicensed entity).
    Mr. Chavez-Moran (owner of Fiesta) engaged in offering to sell, or advertise the selling of condominiums offered by Fiesta for a development known as Fiesta De Cortez Suites and Hotel Resort aka Fiesta Golden Resort (the "Property"). The "Property" is located in Puerto Penasco, Sonora, Mexico. Mr. Chavez-Moran failed to notify the Commissioner of the intent to sell condominiums or ever applying for a subdivision Public Report [A Public Report serves as license to a subdivider to sell and market (wherein disclosures are made) in order to protect the consumer.] with respect to the "Property". Further, he failed to file copies of advertising materials used in connection with sales of condominiums with the "Property."
    Arizona Consumers who have filed complaints with the Department have lost approximately $378,318 earnest monies due to illegal activities of Mr. Chavez-Moran. If you are aware of any other Arizona Consumers who have been harmed as a result of Mr. Chavez-Moran's actions, please have them contact the Arizona Department of Real Estate, Investigations Division.

    The Arizona Daily Star has picked this up as well ... A copy of the notice hasn't hit the AZRE.gov site yet, but here's a PDF copy of the cease and desist.

    Aaaaand ... here's a follow-up article in the Az. Daily Star

    You may recall from earlier posts that the AZ. Department Of Real Estate, which has been heavily involved in the Mexican real estate market and trends, along with the Arizona Mexico Commission, etc., also publishes Buying Real Estate in Mexico - A Consumer's Guide.

    Anyone out there have some more info on this?

    There's also High-end tourism growth is criticized, from the San Diego Union Tribune:

    Rapidly growing tourist corridors in northwest Mexico are time bombs that strain environmental resources and threaten the region's long-term economic potential, a newly released study concludes.

    Conducted by the Mexico City-based Mexican Institute for Competitiveness, or IMCO, the privately funded study criticizes what it describes as developers' growing tendencies to appeal to the high-end tourist market through luxury hotels and golf courses, saying these have placed increased demands on the region's scarce water supply.

    IMCO is a politically neutral, nonprofit think tank that focuses on issues affecting Mexico's economic competitiveness. The study was commissioned by the Mexican Nature Conservation Fund, which supports environmental groups across Mexico, including the Gulf of California.

    ...throughout the peninsula, “in terms of sustainability, the main problem is water,” said Rodrigo Gallegos, a consultant to IMCO.

    The study singles out golf courses. The typical golf course uses enough water for a population of 6,000, the study said. Although many use recycled water, in some areas where there is not enough supply, the golf courses are sustained by fresh water drawn from local aquifers. current technology is still too expensive, IMCO's Gallegos said.

    The study says local and state governments are doing little to control the rampant growth, and it calls for rules to regulate the development.

    You can read the whole article here.