ENTERTAINMENT

Mexico 2017 | TOURISM | B2B

Players in the tourism sector ensure that entertainment is an integrated part of the full-package experience in Mexico.

Miguel Quintana
MIGUEL QUINTANA
Director General
Experiencias Xcaret
Mauricio Martínez de Alva
MAURICIO MARTÍNEZ DE ALVA
Director General
Grupo Ventura Entertainment

How are you expanding business lines?

MIGUEL QUINTANA Tourists want live experiences; they want to interact with culture, people, and nature and be part of the destination. Hotels are thus starting to create small amusement parks and offer tours to make their offerings more attractive. Hotels are now starting to change and create these activities for the same price they sell their rooms for. This is where Experiencias Xcaret realized we already have all the amusement hotels seek to include in their offering and that we can build the ideal hotel ourselves. Therefore, on December 1, 2017, we will open the doors of our 900-room hotel and be the first “fun-inclusive” hotel. In addition to Xcaret Park and the new integrated hotel, we offer tours to other parts of Quintana Roo State and the Yucatán Peninsula. We have excursions to all archaeological sites, such as Tulum, Cobá, and Chichén Itzá. We offer a professional service that includes our parks and archaeological sites, and in the future we will also be able to take guests fishing or golfing. We intend to continue adding new services step by step. We want to ensure we provide professional, fun, clean, and safe activities for the families that come to the Cancún area.

MAURICIO MARTINEZ DE ALVA In April 2017, we made a deal with Top Golf for 10 new golf venues. Top Golf is a different business. Food and beverage are a huge part of the Top Golf experience, combining golf and a restaurant experience and attracting both golfers and non-golfers. We have a close relationship with Top Golf. Therefore, our three main lines of business are dolphins and tours, parks, and Top Golf. Today, dolphins are the biggest part of the business, though this probably will not be the case in the future. Nevertheless, we are expanding and have acquired the site next to us where we will do three nice concepts with additional dolphin swim space, a fantastic beach club, and an area for crewmembers. This will be open in November and is an excellent investment as land in Cozumel is expensive. Our collection of facilities is great, and we are in the area we want to be in.

What are your plans going forward, particularly in Quintana Roo State, and how do you plan to be one step ahead?

MQ We are still missing certain segments of the market here, for example, an option for visitors to come here for a few days and then go on a Caribbean cruise without needing an American visa. If we had a port here, this would be possible. Other opportunities are to bring in concerts, races, and events to make this a destination for international shows. We are building our next park over the next few years, and it will be called Xavage. It will be in the same area as Xplor, but with completely different adventures. The two parks will complement each other. We are opening our 900-room hotel in 2017, and then we intend to open another new 900-room hotel every two years until we reach a total of 4,500 rooms. We are creating innovations in the market. That is what we have done in the past, and now that we are entering the hotel industry we cannot just do the same as everyone else; we are doing it because we believe we can do it better.

How do you incorporate animal welfare into your operations?

MMDA The business of dolphins is what we were born into; it requires a huge commitment from the owners. Today, we are visible in everything to do with animal welfare. We have been way ahead of the accepted standards regarding animal welfare. Every year, we pass all our reviews and audits. If that were not the case, these tour operators would not deal with us. We have passed all the requirements for customers such as Disney, Royal Caribbean, Carnival, Tui, and Thomas Cook. Mexico is one of the few countries with regulations, whereas countries like the US do not have clear animal welfare regulation. These standards make us better, and we are an active participant in raising them. The animal populations are growing, which is a reflection of animal welfare. We have a concept called the Blue Conservation Project; other companies are green but we are in the dolphin business so we are blue. We invest money in free-range dolphins in conjunction with the university and work with fishermen to clean the ocean. We are conscious that sustainability and animal welfare are the only way to go in this business.