lively game of paintball.
For a more tranquil pace, options include a ride aboard the Estrella de Puebla, a 260-foot observation wheel with 54 slowly turning gondolas. Located in Lineal Park, the attraction offers views of
the city center and the Popocatepetl and Iztaccihuatl volcanoes.
According to Harold Sanders Palacios, director of Yucatan Tourism, meeting planners and groups are hungry for truly unforgettable experiences—and Yucatan is one of the best places to satisfy
“Yucatan is a mature destination for the meetings industry, and
is ideal to offer customers a multitude of options to do throughout
the state: haciendas, cenotes, archaeology, history, gastronomy,
adventure, beach,” he said. “Outdoor experiences range from the
archaeological sites like Chichen Itza and Uxmal to the beautiful
colonial towns of Izamal and Valladolid. With the assistance of
local DMCs, planners can create unique experiences at these iconic locations, from private tours and receptions to custom dining
experiences. In the north of Yucatan, the natural scenery and ecological reserves of Rio Celestun and Rio Lagartos, which are home
to more than 400 different bird species, offer a special landscape
that’s in contrast to the luxurious and magnificent haciendas.”
Chihuahua’s dramatic geography, which includes sprawling plains
and soaring hills, provides myriad possibilities for exploration. Top
attractions include the Grutas Nombre de Dios (“Name of God
Caves”), where groups can wander through 17 underground chambers filled with stalagmites, stalactites and rock formations. Nature
lovers should also consider a visit to El Rejon Metropolitan Park,
which opened in 2011 and offers kayak and pedal-boat rentals as
well as extensive paths for joggers and runners.
The city of Chihuahua also serves as a gateway to the legendary
Copper Canyon. Groups looking for excitement beyond a quiet
hike or train ride can visit Barrancas del Cobre Adventure Park,
which offers activities including rappelling, rock climbing and
experiencing the Zip Rider, a seated zipline that shoots people off a
cliff for a bird’s-eye view of the canyon.
Outdoor and adventure activities can be considered for just about
Latest + Greatest
any group, according to Maria Guadalupe Dondiego Sotelo,
director general at BJX & DMC Leon, a company that operates
in the states of Guanajuato, Michoacan, San Luis Potosi and
Aguascalientes. With the now world-famous destination of San
Miguel de Allende among this region’s most popular destinations,
interest is increasing in staging events there, she said.
“When our clients ask us to handle VIP groups, we include sports
and adventure themes,” Dondiego said. “We have experiences in
Guanajuato including ATV, horseback riding, vineyard tours in
the state of Guanajuato and Queretaro, and running tours, during
which participants see the city running short or long distances.
“One of the most exciting and surprising adventure activities
that we offer is La Huasteca Secreta, in the state of San Luis Potosi,”
she added. “It’s a magical place with dazzling nature and activities
like jumping off waterfalls, rock climbing and river paddling by
day and night. We can guarantee that groups will have a totally
➜ The state of Yucatan is gearing up to attract more meetings. The Yucatan International Convention Center (www.
yucatan.travel) is due to complete construction at the end
of 2017 and begin hosting events in 2018. Representing
Samsung’s first partnership in the region, the facility’s main
hall has a capacity for 6,000 people, and the upper floor
has two halls for up to 2,000 people each. There are also
two terraces with a capacity for up to 700 guests each.
In preparation for what is expected to be an influx of new
meetings, at least six new hotels are to open in the Merida
area in 2018 and 2019.
➜ In Puebla, the newest luxury hotel is the 78-room Rosewood Puebla ( www.rosewoodhotels.com). It has 4,949
square feet of indoor meeting space, including a ballroom,
two boardrooms, patios, a private terrace and a private
➜ New in Guadalajara this year is the Tequila Herradura
Express ( www.herradura.com/#!/visit-us), a 90-minute train
ride, complete with bar service, that operates between Guadalajara and Casa Herradura, where tequila is made. Tours
include round-trip train transportation, a light breakfast
with music and entertainment on board, lunch and a distillery tour, in addition to live local music and folk dancing at
➜ The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company ( www.ritzcarlton.com)
plans to open its first hotel in Mexico City in 2019. The
153-room Ritz-Carlton, Mexico City is part of the Chapultepec Uno mixed-use project, located on the popular Paseo
de la Reforma boulevard.
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