Maya Newsletters: of primary interest to property owners on the Costa
Maya, - Rio Indio - Placer - Uvero - Punta Herrera - Xcalak and other
points along the coast
August/Agosto 16, 2007**************************
* Bus trip from Mahahual to the airport
* Do you need an FM3?
* Message board for Costa Maya Neighbors - topic
FM3 and Hurricane Dean
* Last call, Home-owners associations: Rio Indio
- Placer and Uvero - Pulticub
* New Terminal at the airport
* Articles of Interest in the news
* Beach/ocean front Houses for Rent - long term and
* Spotlight on your Neighbors
It was so nice last year not to have to report any Hurricanes
headed this way, but now as I look at Dean I hope the storm stays
historically consistent with past storms and veers north between Cancun
and Cuba - missing everyone. However, as I watch it is headed again
straight for Cozumel, forecast to be a category 4. We can only prepare,
hope and pray that it also does not head to the US and create damage.
I'll post Hurricane Dean reports for the Costa Maya on the Costa Maya
Live Forum after this passes, but its something everyone should be
keeping an eye on. http://costamayalive.com/Forum/index.php
Historically, Mahahual is not a target for hurricanes but we do experience
storm surge. Storms have a tendency to pass North of us. A few have
hit Chetumal or gone north into the Sian Ka'an. Still, everyone remembers
Hurricane Janet that in 1955 all but wiped out Xcalak and Chetumal.
You can watch the hurricane forecasting at http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/index.shtml.
If you look at the left Navigational column and click on Satellite,
you can view animate loops of the actual storm as it progresses. We
get pretty obsessed here on the beach and spend a lot of time watching
Whitney, a neighbor who's house we just listed (see info on her Casita
Dragonfly at the end of this newsletter), just sent me a link where
you can input your coordinates and find out how close the storm will
come based on the current trajectory. If you want to follow the discussions,
the coordinates for Mahahual are approximately 18.7 N and 87.6 W.
Note that this information is updated every three hours. http://stormcarib.com/closest4.htm
Thank heaven for satellite internet!
BUS TRIP FROM MAHAHUAL TO THE AIRPORT
Many of you make the trip to Mahahual and find the expense of a car
is more than your hotel or Airfare and it adds up. The bus, on the
other hand is very cheap and painless. I have guests do it all the
time. Here is a first hand report from the McChristy's who gave it
"The bus trip was so easy and much easier for John. We transferred
quickly from the <Playa del Carmen terminal> area to the one
o'clock airport bus. Three minutes later and we would have had to
wait. Certainly not unpleasant with the shopping and restaurants on
the street. It dropped us off at terminal two and now we know we needed
to go to terminal three. No problem since they have a shuttle every
twenty minutes. Terminal three is amazing with a Starbucks, Johnny
Rocket hamburgers, DH ice cream, and Jimmy Buffet restaurant and store.
We ate at the restaurant downstairs, Berryhill, and it was excellent.
. . .All in all, it was easy but we were so tired after sixteen hours.
But again it was only one day of travel, where someone else did the
NOTE: The ADO bus is the "express" bus with the least amount
of stops. You can get the ADO in Mahahual, in Playa del Carmen and
at the Airport. The MayaB bus which travels up and down 307 will stop
anywhere but does not go to the airport and does not go to Mahahual.
Still it leaves Playa del Carmen every hour and stops at Limones where
you can transfer to an ADO or taxi to Mahahual. There are several
ADO buses each day that go to and from Mahahual to Chetumal and Cancun.
they all stop at Limones before heading north or south, so you can
transfer there. It is easy to get a taxi at all locations.
DO YOU NEED AN FM3?
The short answer is "no" you don't need an FM3. The topic
of FM3s has risen it's head again with many people confused as to
what to do and if they even need one at all. First, you do not need
an FM3 to own property or even to build your house. Nor do you need
to have an FM3 to take your corporation out of dormancy or to get
a bank account. But you can't legally sign contracts or checks unless
you are Mexican or if you have an FM3. You can give what's called
a limited "power" to individuals to sign paperwork for you
to do almost anything. Powers are limited to specific tasks. Usually
you give it to your builder to build your house, your accountant to
pay your taxes, your lawyer or a friend. If you purchased your property
with a corporation and are not a citizen, you probably gave a "power"
to someone to aid in the purchase of your property. This most likely
might have been your lawyer. You are listed as primary shareholders
of the corporation who's assets include your property, BUT your signature
is not legal in Mexico. Anything you want to do can be done by giving
limited "power" to people. When you are ready to sell your
property, if you do not have an FM3, you will again have to give limited
"power" to someone to facilitate the sale of your property.
MESSAGE BOARD TOPIC FOR COSTA MAYA LIVE - FM3s
FM3's have been the topic of discussion for a long time on the Costa
Maya Forum. I think it is worth visiting again. FM3s are really visas
to live for periods longer than 180 days, to work, to legally sign
documents or to sign checks for a business bank account. They can
be a headache as they have to be renewed every 6 months or annually.
As mentioned above, you don't really need one. We went through several
false starts when getting our FM3s, but now we find it is easy. I
give my FM3 to my accountant and a couple of weeks later I have it
back. But FM3s are very tricky. Now that everything is computerized,
If your corporation is sponsoring your FM3, everything on your FM3
must match the information on your Corporation. This includes your
title in the corporation, your address and your signature. When things
don't match up, it adds time and bother every time you need to use
it (for example when you leave or enter the country). If it is a retirement
FM3, I have heard that you cannot have a corporation. I am not sure
that is true because people seem to be able to get retirement FM3s.
If you have had experience in this area, please log onto the Costa
Maya Forum and voice your opinions. Also if anyone wants to discuss
Hurricane Dean, this is a good place. I'll place reports of Dean on
the Costa Maya Live Forum.
* HOME OWNER'S ASSOCIATION - COSTA MAYA NORTH - LAST CALL FOR MEMBERS
Pam Laurion, organizer of the Costa Maya North association would
like any lingering neighbors to contact her regarding the Home owner's
association. They are getting ready to file with the Notario and it
is best to get all names on the association now. Later, it will require
an extra fee to add new ones, so please contact Pam today! firstname.lastname@example.org
- She needs:
- full name
- date of birth
- occupation (of all corporation officers)
* HOME OWNER'S ASSOCIATION - El PLACER - RIO INDIO
Last Call for the Home owner's association for El Placer: "Asociacion
de Colonos El Placer-Rio Indio AC." We encourage everyone to
get their names on the initial filing of the association. To be a
part of the organization, we need the following information:
- full name
- date of birth
- occupation (of all corporation officers)
The cost of the corporation is $1100 which will be shared among all
members of the association. Please send your information to Ted Garcia.
TGarcia@appletonideas.com. We cannot proceed with electricity without
NEW CANCUN AIRPORT TERMINAL & TULUM AIRPORT
I've now had the pleasure to fly in and out of the new international
terminal in Cancun, which opened on May 17. Its quite "Americanized"
and I think faster to get through customs. Even better, check-in is
faster since they have CT scanning equipment for your luggage and
don't have to hand search. There is a shuttle that goes between the
two terminals. They are now working on a new runway as well. I wondered
again, what the status was for the Tulum airport so I did some internet
searching and found ASUR's quarterly earnings conference for July
24th, 2007 and an announcement from the Transportation secretary,
so this is probably as "official" as any news you can find
about the airport. I can find nothing about Chetumal airport. I've
copied a portion of the conference call that followed the quarterly
announcement. It combines information about the new terminal with
information about Tulum. AUSR is the first privatized airport group
in Mexico and operator of Cancun Airport and eight others in the southeast
"The new terminal represented a $93 million investment and has
allowed us to double the international passenger traffic capacity
at Cancun Airport. That means adding capacity for an additional six
million passengers per year.
The facility has covered area of more than 42,000 square meters,
84 check-in counters, and platform equipped with 11 gates. It also
includes security equipment, including the first CT scanning system
in Mexico for all check-in baggage. This new facility has been able
help us to reduce the congestion in our terminal buildings and provide
a better service level to our passengers.
As you have seen in the press release, commercial revenues increased
significantly during the quarter. In fact, this new terminal building
has ten new food and beverage commercial spaces and nine retail and
other commercial spaces, including a duty-free shop, convenience stores,
an exchange booth and several gift shops.
As it relates to the second airport in the Riviera Maya, last week
the Mexican government announced a national infrastructure development
plan. The plan includes a project for an international airport in
the Riviera Maya region. This plan does not have an exact location,
but using the map that was included in the document, this new airport
should be located close to Tulum. The plan calls for a two-year development
period beginning 2008 with a total estimated investment of $172 million.
The plan also includes the possibility of relocating the existing
Merida Airport." (NOTE: ASUR also runs the Merida Airport)
The Deputy Transport Minister of Mexico announced on August 9, 2007
that Mexico hopes to hold an open auction to build an airport in the
Riviera Maya tourist region early next year and will name a winner
around mid-year. This announcement was reported earlier this year,
but I've found news to be incredibly redundant and repetitive here
in Mexico. Plans for an airport at Riviera Maya, one of the fastest
growing resort areas in Mexico, have stirred major interest in the
Rodriguez said the area now has as many hotel rooms as the Caribbean
resort of Cancun. Airport operator ASUR, which runs the terminal at
Cancun, has said it is interested in developing an airport in Riviera
Maya, which is located in the same state of Quintana Roo and is expected
to take passenger traffic away from Cancun. That would mean lost business
for ASUR at Cancun, if the company did not win the auction to build
the new airport, which will be located close to the area's main resort
of Playa del Carmen. Rival Mexican airport operator GAP has also shown
interest, and Mexican billionaire tycoon Carlos Slim has said his
construction firm IDEAL could also bid for the project.
In his annual Marina Day speech June 1, Mexican President Felipe
Calderon announced his five-year plan that includes building more
cruise-ship piers, in order to create more jobs and better lives for
Mexican citizens. Calderon named Zihuatanejo, along with Cabo San
Lucas, Loreto, Manzanillo, Guaymas and three more ports in Quintana
Roo as locations for new cruise-ship piers. (MB - locations are not
exact. One will be Puerto Morelos, one in Cancun, but I do not know
INTERESTING ITEMS IN THE NEWS
MEXICO ANNOUNCES TRANSPORT IMPROVEMENTS Mexico will
construct three new airports serving beach resorts and build thousands
of miles of new roads as part of a $37 billion transport facelift
launched Wednesday. The five-year public-private infrastructure package,
widely seen as badly needed as Mexico's ailing transport networks
hold back economic growth, also includes upgrades for sea ports and
Mexico's creaking railway network. Unveiling the ambitious plan, President
Felipe Calderón said airports would be built at the growing
tourist regions at the Sea of Cortes and Ensenada on the Pacific,
and at the Riviera Maya, south of the Caribbean resort of Cancun.
(SEE REPORT ABOVE)
Another 31 airports will be expanded, including those at Cancun and
Toluca, an industrial city close to the capital, Calderón said.
Transport Minister Luis Tellez said the package envisaged investments
of 287 billion pesos ($26 billion) in highways, the first major road
building plan in more than 12 years. The infrastructure drive also
includes expected investments of 49 billion pesos ($4.6 billion) in
railways and 71 billion pesos ($6.6 billion) in ports over the next
five years. The highway plan, with investment coming roughly half
and half from the government and the private sector, envisages the
construction and expansion of more than 10,900 miles (17,500 km) of
roads, a quarter of them in rural areas. Ports earmarked for upgrades
include terminals at Manzanillo, Veracruz and Puerto Morelos and the
crude oil exporting port of Dos Bocas.
Firms that could benefit from the plans include construction company
ICA and infrastructure firms IDEAL, both controlled by Mexican tycoon
Carlos Slim. Spokesmen for ICA and IDEAL declined to comment.
Airport operators GAP, ASUR and OMA could also be interested in building
and operating the airports. ASUR has said it wants the Riviera Maya
The World Economic Forum ranks Mexico's infrastructure as less competitive
than that of emerging powerhouses China and India, and even less than
small countries such as El Salvador.
ELIZABETH ARDEN JUMPS ON THE COSTA MAYA BAND WAGON - sort
of. Elizabeth Arden just came out with a new nail polish called "Costa
Maya gold." There isn't any gold here that I know of other than
the sunrises, but the nail polish has gold flecks in it. I'm pretty
sure Elizabeth has never been here!
SPOTLIGHT ON YOUR NEIGHBORS
No new spotlight this month, but if you like to be spotlighted, please
let me know. If you are new to the newsletter, you might want to check
NEW VACATION HOMES FOR LONG-TERM RENT IN RIO INDIO AND SOUTH MAHAHUAL
We've added new homes on the Mayan Beach Garden website! These are
privately owned beachfront homes. If you are at all thinking of building
a home, its a good idea to stay in a house. It helps determine if
you are going to build a simple "beach home" or a more traditional
American style home. It also helps you get a sense of what it is like
to live "off the grid." Please take note that mid December
- end of March fill up fast, so you might want to get your name in
and put a hold on a property, we only have a couple of vacancies left
for Christmas on any properties. http://www.mayanbeachgarden.com/Rental_Homes.html.
Casita Dragonfly- Sleeps 6, this house is great for those
of you who have property South of Mahahual and would like a reasonably
priced beachfront house.
Porto Vino: the Costa Maya's most luxurious property sits
on 64 meters of private beach. Sleeps 8 - Air conditioned
Dr. Greg Zeman's -two
bedroom, two bath, A/C & on-site care-taker.
The editor of this newsletter (me) makes no claims that the information
here is completely true. I am not a news reporter, Spanish is not
my native language, the newspapers are notorious for not verifying
information and this is not my primary business, but rather a service
to the neighborhood. If you find something untrue PLEASE let me know
and I will print a disclaimer. I try to verify the information but
even the newspaper prints up rumors, so I can only report what I read
Until Next month...
Regards from your Costa Maya Neighbor
Mayan Beach Garden, Boutique hotel on the Costa Maya