Puerto Penasco, Mexico better known to Arizonians as Rocky Point is still being talked about as a Home Port for cruise ships. For those in Arizona or those wanting to fly into Phoenix, in a mere 3.5 hour scenic drive , you could board your cruise vacation on the SEa of Cortez. Discussions have been going on for years, but recently city meetings and city officials have announced there will be an initial breaking ground ceremony slated for sometime in 2013. Will it happen? Will a cruise ship terminal be built in Puerto Peñasco? If so, one thing is certain, change will come.
Things will change, that is a guarantee. I’m not a fortune teller, but here are 10 things that will definitely happen if Rocky Point is a debarkation area for a cruise or a port on a cruise lines itinerary.
- Improvement in the Economy - no way to argue this one. Local merchants will be busy. On cruise ships days, imagine the number of people in the town. If they are leaving from Peñasco, condos, hotels and houses will house everyone the night or weekend before. Depending on the cruise, expect 1000 to 3500 cruise passengers looking for a place to stay.
- Less unemployment- a cruise terminal and all it involves will add thousands of jobs to the area. Local companies will need to hire additional help to keep up with increased traffic. Opportunities are endless for those wanting to work and live in Puerto Peñasco.
- Real estate properties appreciate- yes, the housing market will improve, imagine opportunity to own rental property for cruise passengers or owning a beachfront property in a place that will have new services and easily accessible.
- Commercial airlines in Rocky Point- Just when you’re thinking about loading the car up and driving down to Rocky Point for the weekend, you will be able to say, nah I think I will jump on a 45 minute flight from Phoenix instead of driving. Airlines will bring flights from all over to the dazzling new airport.
- International travel press coverage- when you say, Puerto Peñasco, Mexico…someone might actually know what you mean and where it is because it is a cruise destination. Magazines from all over will feature stories on our little town.
- Puerto Peñasco will become a famous getaway destination, who knows, maybe they will bring cast members from an American TV reality show here on vacation- Has anyone contacted the Bachelor or Bachelorette show? Love in the Wild, or hey Jersey Shore and the Kardashians are welcome as well.
- Traffic, crowds at restaurants, lines- yes, everyone who lives here full or part time will know the cruise ships days and try to be working on those days to take advantage of the crowds or laying low at home waiting for them to leave-seriously, have you ever been to a town when the cruise ships drop off? Mass exodus of people everywhere.
- Can you say zip lining? Ok, Rocky Point doesn’t have a zip lining tour off the Pinacate or cliffs of Cholla Bay, yet…but they already offer ATVing, jet skiing, sailing, kayaking, Pinacate Biosphere tours, CEDO tours, shopping tours, parasailing, ultra lights, horseback riding on the beach, spas, live music, oyster farms and deep sea fishing…but you watch zip lining will appear somewhere, maybe we will even get an expanded aquarium to show off the World’s Aquarium according to Jacques Cousteau.
- New companies and businesses will be created, - new restaurants, new shopping and new outdoor excursion companies will all move into town. Of course, the great ones that have been around forever will have to expand but those who dreamed of starting a new business may just find their place here in Rocky Point. You might want to plan ahead.
- What we know now, will not exist- our little sleepy fishing town is already changing with the newly opened Sam’s Club, movie theaters and franchised stores, some folks love the change and some folks maybe not so much… One thing for sure is we will be repeating the chorus of a song, “those were the days my friend, I thought they’d never end…” but they will.
Just returning from a cruise in Alaska exploring the Inside Passage in August, I couldn’t help but compare Rocky Point to all the little fishing towns along the passage. Most locals welcomed the cruisers and were very, very friendly. It made me think about all the changes that might happen to Rocky Point if the cruise ships are a regular occurrence.