Flights proposed from Southern California to Mexico’s Puerto Peñasco

10:00 PM PDT on Monday, August 13, 2007By KIMBERLY PIERCEALL
The Press-Enterprise

LA/Ontario International Airport may add a direct flight to Puerto Peñasco in Mexico, a small resort destination north of the Gulf of California popular with Arizona residents, according to a marketing firm representing the destination.

LA/Ontario International Airport may add a direct flight to Puerto Peñasco in Mexico, a small resort destination north of the Gulf of California popular with Arizona residents, according to a marketing firm representing the destination.AeroMexico’s regional airline Aerolitoral is expected to fly a 33-seat plane three times a week between Southern California and Rocky Point International Airport in Puerto Peñasco starting next month.

The resort town, which is in Sonora, is near the top of the Gulf of California. Its airport was built largely with funds from the Mexico City-based time-share company Mayan Resorts Group, according to the airport’s Web site.

The airline is still negotiating with Los Angeles World Airports to decide whether the flights will take off from LAX, LA/Ontario International Airport or both, according to Kathrina Calbes with Blaze PR in Los Angeles, who represents an investor in the route.

LA/Ontario International Airport wouldn’t confirm the flight.

The flights would be partially subsidized by time-share and condo-hotel developments being built in the town, said Calbes. There are 42 hotel developments under construction in Puerto Peñasco, she said.

“The character of the town began to change in recent years as a result of the development by Mexican and American investors who saw the potential in the seaside town,” Edna P. González Bertheau, spokeswoman for Puerto Peñasco Destination group, said in a statement. The region now includes homes, golf courses and a water park.

The town’s airport has two runways, one asphalt and one gravel. Only charter flights have used it until now, said Gabriel Huerta, assistant to the director of the Mexico Tourism Board’s Los Angeles office.

“The local facilities are very excited about this flight,” he said. “It promises to bring in more tourists, more people to the area.”

Sue Tanzman, an agent with Martin’s Travel & Tours Inc. in Los Angeles, was skeptical that the flights would carry tourists.

“I’ve never heard anyone go there or want to go there,” she said.

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