Just in time for the busy Easter holiday and spring break vacation season, Riviera Nayarit officials have cut the ribbon on a new toll-free highway between La Cruz de Huanacaxtle and Punta de Mita. While visitors will appreciate easier access, local residents are praising the thoroughfare for its safety and potential to bring new business to the area.
In a statement released on March 18, Roberto Sandoval Castaneda, governor of the State of Nayarit, referred to the 5.5-mile stretch of four asphalt lanes as a “quality project” that adds to the area’s developments. “This is of a quality that rivals that of toll roads,” he said. The $300 million investment is expected to accommodate up to 20,000 vehicles daily.
In addition to providing a safe and convenient route for local motorists traveling between the municipalities of La Cruz de Huanacaxtle and Punta de Mita, the highway will shorten travel time for tourists visiting Riviera Nayarit beaches. Aside from the 110k/hour (68mph) speed limit, other highlights include palm tree landscaping in the center median and an exit for beautiful Destiladeras Beach.
“We’d like extend our thanks and recognition to the State Government for this achievement, as well as to the other authorities, developers, businesses and hoteliers who helped further this project, which greatly improves ground connectivity in the Riviera Nayarit,” said Fernando Gonzalez Ortega, president of the Hotel and Motel Association of Banderas Bay.
Richard Zarkin, Riviera Nayarit Convention and Visitors Bureau (RNCVB) public relations manager, notes that the new route will reduce travel time by approximately 10 minutes for Riviera Nayarit guests, as well as cut travel time to and from Licenciado Gustavo Diaz Ordaz International Airport (PVR).
“Riviera Nayarit has nearly 200 miles of gorgeous coastline, and the corridor between La Cruz de Huanacaxtle and Punta de Mita is amongst the most popular with tourists,” said Zarkin. “Because of this increased interest — after showing a 12.97 percent increase in passengers arriving by air — our destination has taken this important measure of infrastructure development to better service a quality destination product.”
The Punta Mita development has become synonymous with luxury travel and the resort accommodates well-heeled travelers with The St. Regis Punta Mita Resort and Four Seasons Punta Mita. The W Punta de Mita is slated to open in May.
Riviera Nayarit was well represented in TripAdvisor’s 2016 Travelers’ Choice, with Punta de Mita’s St. Regis and Four Seasons resorts joining Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit and Marival Residences Luxury Resort in the Best Hotels in Mexico and Best Hotels in the World categories.
“It’s not unusual for the Riviera Nayarit hotels to be among the best — their quality is a given,” said Marc Murphy, RNCVB’s managing director. “We’re very pleased because it keeps us top of mind in the tourism industry.”
Murphy added, “Punta Mita is famous for being home to the most exclusive development in Mexico and its reputation keeps growing, thanks to the fact that it’s become the favorite hangout on the Mexican Pacific for celebrities, among other things.”
Don’t expect the destination to rest on its laurels. Riviera Nayarit has recently announced a development project for the historic town of San Blas. “In recent years, San Blas has increased in popularity due to its high quality birding location, historic offerings and amazing beach,” Zarkin said.