By Dana Niland
The Riviera Nayarit in Mexico is continuing to surge as a travel destination, according to new data.
The destination on Mexico’s Pacific Coast saw a 5 percent increase in North American visitors during the first half of 2019, compared to the same period last year.
The Riviera Nayarit is best known as the home of the chic hotspot of Puerto Vallarta and the sprawling Punta Mita luxury development, among others. (The area is also set for the 2020 debut of a highly-anticipated new resort from Auberge).
“We had one of our strongest years to date in 2018 and are proud to see our numbers for the first half of this year are on pace to outperform that success,” said Marc Murphy, managing director of the Riviera Nayarit Convention and Visitors Bureau. “We are seeing an increase in not only the average occupancy rates at our properties, but also in the rates at which those rooms are being sold, which signifies a positive impact on the local economy as we attract higher spending travelers.”
From January to June 2019, the area welcomed 244,692 American tourists and 191,402 Canadians — a 4.4 percent and 5.8 percent increase, respectively, over 2018.
Tourism has contributed over $785 million in revenue for the destination, of which $649 million came from international tourists.
The Riviera Nayarit’s southern region of Bahia de Banderas maintained an average hotel occupancy rate of 82.4 percent with an average low density occupation rate of 2.44 guests per room.
Average occupancy rates at four- and five-star properties also saw an increase, officials said.