Isla Mujeres Mystery ~ Lynda L. Lock

Scattered around the island, projects unfinished, left to crumble and rot – they each have their own story of hopes and dreams.  Many have become shattered dreams; lost through economic turmoil, under-financed plans or problems with permits, and regulations.  But – there could be opportunities for someone: someone with a vision, someone with a healthy bank account. 

For us the most visible abandoned project is the Unik Hotel (unique).  It is situated the main road on the south-western side of the island.  That’s the property I for a few years jokingly referred to as my future employer, with imaginary plans to be the general manager.  Eventually I realized the hotel was not going to be finished anytime in my working lifetime, so darn it all, I just had to retire.
Unik Hotel 75 luxury suites, complete with personal butler
The Unik Hotel was originally designed as seventy-five luxury suites, each with their own butler.  And then the worldwide financial crisis of 2008 happened, and that dream went up in smoke.  Inside are five hydraulic elevators still in their crates, waiting to be installed.  A local businessman has in his storage facility the large screen televisions purchased for the hotel in 2008.  The televisions are a little rusty and corroded after five years of sitting, but the creditors won’t make the decision to toss them out.  From the waterside the property looks amazing.  It would be such an asset to the island if the hotel is eventually completed.   

Unfinished condo project on Playa Media Luna
 Another unfinished and very visible project is on Playa Media Luna, the north-eastern area of the island.  This project progressed as far as opening the display suite, and selling a few condos before the finances bottomed out.  The location is stunning, facing a crescent-shaped beach, and the multi-hued waters.  This beach is a favourite place for the sea turtles to lay eggs, a great spot to watch the release of thousands of baby turtles in September and October.  

Pretty home for a number of pigeons
But the one that intrigues me the most is the blue and yellow hued Moroccan-influenced building that sits across from Oscar’s Pizza on the western side of the island.  On our first trip to Isla in 2002 the colours and design of the building caught my eye.  Designed to be an apartment complex its current occupants are hundreds of pigeons nesting inside the domed structure; cooing, and courting.  Every year the paint fades a little more, not catching my eye as readily as it once did.  The complex was started by a local man who had done well in the Mexican lottery.  Perhaps lottery-mania caught up to this dream. 
There is always hope, hope that some or all of these projects will be finished.  Sometimes one person’s difficulties can be another person’s opportunity.

Hasta Luego          

Lynda and Lawrie


4 Replies to “Hopes, Dreams and Opportunities”

  1. I had always wondered about the structure across from Oscar's. The other 2 places are eyesores now. I walk every morning when we are on Isla & start by the one by Media Luna. Hopefully at some point someone will come up with the money to finish them!


  2. I always looked at these as well. A former commercial banker, thought it would be an opportunity to bring former clients/investors to revive the project. Have been told the legal issues and process is tough and hinder picking up failed projects. That is too bad, I see opportunity.


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