Hotel chains join efforts to fight sargassum in Cancun
Spanish hotel companies such as Meliá, Riu and Barceló are among the most affected by the massive arrival of sargassum because of their strong presence on the beaches of Quintana Roo’s tourist destinations, so they work at night with heavy machinery and during the day gardeners are in charge of keeping the beaches clean.
Meliá has seven hotels in Mexico and plans to open three more in the next three years: Paradisus Playa Mujeres, ME Guadalajara and Gran Meliá Punta Canuva. To contain the sargassum at its properties in the Mexican Caribbean, the Spanish company has installed barriers or containment nets to prevent it from reaching the beaches. In addition, crews have been hired for daily cleaning, as well as equipment for loading and unloading materials. On the part of the government, boats have begun to operate to collect the sargassum kilometers before it reaches the coasts.
Riu is the Spanish hotel company with the largest presence in the Mexican Caribbean, where it has 22 hotels, six of which are located in the Playa del Carmen area, the area with the highest number of sargassum beach breaks. The main problems are in the south, in Playa del Carmen, while Cancun and Costa Mujeres have been less affected in other episodes.
Barceló also has six hotels in Playa del Carmen that are working in coordination with the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources with the goal of minimizing the inconvenience to clients: The cleaning is done at night (from 11 p.m. to 9 a.m.) with three specialized machines and two dump trucks to transport the sargassum to the collection center. From 9 a.m., a team of gardeners is in charge of keeping the beach clean during the day.