The sights and flavours of Mexico’s Pacific Coast came to Toronto last night, as the Los Cabos Tourism Board welcomed agents and suppliers to learn what’s new in the destination.
The event featured a selection of tour operators, airlines and hotels showcasing their Los Cabos offerings, while guests were treated to a selection of cocktails crafted by Osvaldo Vazquez, mixologist & beverage manager at Los Cabos’ Chileno Bay Resort.
The evening also marked the return of Rodrigo Esponda, managing director of the Los Cabos Tourism Board, to Toronto, where he previously served as North America regional director for the Mexico Tourism Board.
“It’s been fantastic,” Esponda told PAX of his new role. “I’ve been in Los Cabos before but didn’t fully realize how amazing it is. The quality of the service and hospitality competes with any high-end destination around the world, and with a much better value.”
Esponda explained that while Mexico overall is one of the most popular destinations with Canadians, Los Cabos welcomed 200,000 Canadian visitors in 2016, leaving plenty of room for growth from the market. Part of the plan to achieve that goal is educating more Canadian travel agents on Los Cabos, particularly in Eastern Canada where Mexico’s Pacific coastline is not as popular as Cancun and the Mayan Riviera. In addition to industry events, Esponda said that the tourism board is also working with consortia such as Uniglobe and Ensemble to offer some upcoming FAM trips to their respective agents.
Mixologist Osvaldo Vazquez shows off his skills
“We know that part of the challenge is that many agents don’t know Los Cabos, particularly in Eastern Canada,” Esponda told PAX. “We’re sure that once they go and visit, they won’t go anywhere else.”
Describing Los Cabos’ approach to hospitality as “very personalized and of a high-standard,” Esponda said that the average hotel size there is only 200 rooms; currently, more than 2,800 additional rooms will open in the region by year’s end, followed by approximately 1,700 more in 2018. In keeping with that personal touch, Esponda added that farm-to-table gastronomy is a growing trend in Los Cabos, “to such an extent that visitors pick their own vegetables and learn how to prepare a five-course meal.”
And while Los Cabos flights are offered from gateways across Canada, there’s room to grow; currently, the destination is offered from various Canadian cities by Air Canada, Sunwing, Transat and WestJet.
“There’s plenty of airlift and we’re working to get more,” Esponda said.