Mr Steve Galloway from Reno, Nevada spoke to The Yucatan Times about the time he “fell in love” with Progreso, Chicxulub and the beaches of Yucatan, as he went to have dinner with some friends there, while he was visiting Mérida.
It was my first visit to Puerto Chicxulub. All I knew was it was near Progreso, a restaurant on the beach, and they were serving all you can eat Baby Back Ribs. We were greeted by the owner Ron, who graciously showed us to our table. Outside, next to the swimming pool, with the haunting song of crashing waves, just a few yards away. We no sooner sat down, when we were greeted by our waiter, for our drink order. As tempting as a full bar is, I needed water to wash down my ribs, but sodas, as well as mixed drinks and cold beer also were served to my table.
The waiter suggested the ribs, but the complete menu was also available. Knowing that reservations are suggested, every expat was enjoying the hospitality at La Casa Del Faro, and there it was in front of our eyes, over 200 Kilos of ribs for us to eat, the entire table ordered ribs.
Within moments, 4 plates appeared in front of us, with meaty ribs, cole slaw, beans (whole) and potato salad. Oh, yes, plenty of napkins. My first bite was of the cole slaw, a creamy texture, with a nice crunch and enough vinegar to make it a perfect bite. The ribs were very meaty, and tender, as if they have been boiled first, then finished off on a coal grill, with home made BBQ sauce.
I was surprised at the sweetness of the sauce, as we are in The Yucatan. Ron the owner explained that his food is tailor made for his customers, and seeing there were all Canadians, except my table, he hit a home run on the sauce. The beans were also a surprise, with no sweetness, but a mild bite. It is obvious that La Casa Del Faro, knows how to balance a palate. The plate, as soon as it was empty, was cleared with a new loaded dish in front of me. Four plates later, I decided I had enough.
That particular night, there was a “Charro” (Mexican Cowboy) doing rope tricks for entertainment, and on other nights, La Casa Del Faro has live music too.
It was time to be social, and make my rounds to other tables. First off, Big Steve and company. He eats there a few times a week, and claims the table as his own. I was challenged to come back on any given Friday for all you can eat fish and chips. Why not next week!
I asked Ron the owner about his restaurant experience, as he obviously understands the hospitality business, and the very happy diners proved that. Ron retired to Yucatan from the construction industry in Florida. He bought a new house on the beach adjacent to the public pier, and realized it was the perfect place to open a restaurant, Ron’s genius in the restaurant business has been realized in the year Casa Del Faro has been opened.
I can not wait to go back home, so I can sell my house in Reno, and come back o Chicxulub to buy a house near the ocean. I can not afford one of the big beach front properties, but I can absolutely purchase a gorgeous little house not more than 500 feet away from the beach, I already talked to the owner, she is very nice Yucatecan lady and she is willing to sell at a very reasonable price.
Today, the state of Yucatan is experiencing an economic boom. Merida and the Yucatecan coast have become a favorite for American and Canadian baby-boomers who are seeking a better quality of life at a reasonable price.
The Yucatan coast is ideal for active retirees. Just 40 minutes away from Merida’s International Airport, via a four lane highway, Progreso, Chelem, Sisal, Celestún and other beach sites are very similar in appearance to the beaches of Southern Florida.
These coastal properties are quickly being acquired by foreign (and Mexican national) buyers that have an understanding of the value that is offered by the state of Yucatan. For example, coastal properties located in the nearby Caribbean state of Quintana Roo have risen astonishingly in the past five years, where one can easily spend $275,000 USD and up for a 20 meter lot without electricity or paved road. The coast of Yucatan still has relatively low beachfront prices starting as low as $20,000 USD.
Yucatan has positioned itself as a relaxing foreign residential community with world-class spas, boutique hotels, high end restaurants, shopping malls, signature golf courses, residential communities, and the state with the lowest crime rate in all of Mexico.
Merida has increased its air connectivity with the US, Canada and Europe via direct flights from Houston, Miami, Dallas/Ft. Worth, Toronto, Rome, Milan, (and even Havana and Belize City).
BUT MANY AMERICANS AND CANADIANS STILL HAVE CONCERNS ABOUT WHETHER FOREIGNERS CAN REALLY OWN PROPERTY IN MEXICO?
The answer is yes, I already did some research and found out that Americans and other foreigners may obtain direct ownership of property in the interior of Mexico. However, under Mexican law, foreigners cannot own property outright within the restricted zone (50 kilometers from the coast and 100 km from the border).
Instead, a real estate trust must be set up to hold title for them. Since foreigners are not able to enter into contracts to buy real estate, they must have a bank act on their behalf.
In 1971 the Mexican Government solved this problem, by creating the Fideicomiso. A Fideicomiso is a legal concept that allows foreigners to acquire property in the restricted zone through a bureaucratic process in which they set up a Mexican bank trust. The bank actually holds the deed. Through the trust, foreigners enjoy basically the same rights as Mexican citizens.
Buying a home, business, or other property in Mexico can be an exciting and stress-free experience, as long as you have knowledgeable and trustworthy people working on your side to guide you through the process here in Mexico.
I recommend to anybody in the US or Canada who are reading this article to come down to the Yucatan, you won´t believe all you are going to find out about the country, the people and about yourself too… cause the Yucatan is going to take you through an introspective journey, once you set foot on this holy Mayan ground.
Steve Galloway for The Yucatan Times.
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