Captain’s Cove Restaurant and Royal Resorts were pleased to welcome Sir Richard Branson, the president of Virgin Atlantic Airways on Saturday, July 7. Sir Richard was in town to celebrate the inaugural London– Cancun flight and he attended a brunch at the waterfront restaurant hosted by the British Ambassador to Mexico Judith Macgregor C.B.E. and Mark Carney O.B.E., Sales & Marketing Director for Royal Resorts and Honorary Consul for the states of Quintana Roo and the Yucatan.
Sir Richard Branson arrived on the flight dressed in traditional Mexican apparel and accompanied by two members of the crew bearing the Mexican and British flags. A delegation headed by Gloria Guevara Manzo, the Secretary of Tourism for Mexico, Secretary of Tourism for Quintana Roo Juan Carlos González Hernández, Jesus Almaguer, Director of the Cancun Convention & Visitors Bureau, Dario Flota of the Riviera Maya Tourism Bureau, the Director of Cancun International Airport, Her Majesty’s Ambassador Macgregor and the Mexican Ambassador in the United Kingdom Eduardo Medina-Mora Icaza was on the ground to welcome him, the crew and passengers. A mariachi band was also on hand to entertain the crowd.
Sir Richard Branson arrives in Cancun
Secretary of Tourism for Mexico Gloria Guevara, Secretary of Tourism for Quintana Roo Juan Carlos Gonzalez and the delegation welcoming Sir Richard Branson to Cancun
Sir Richard Branson, President of Virgin Atlantic Airways commented: “I am delighted to be here to celebrate Virgin Atlantic’s new route to Cancun, I can’t believe we waited so long to come here but now we are here. Mexico holds a special place in my heart and it is great to be here with all my family and friends.
Cancun is one of the top five long-haul leisure destinations for UK travellers, and as a market leader in this area, we are pleased to be able to add this route to our network.
With its superb beaches, great hotels and cultural sites, tourism to Cancun and the Riviera Maya is thriving. We believe that we can drive demand even higher by providing great competition to our rivals with our award winning innovative product and service.”
Sir Richard was accompanied by members of his family, media personalities, journalists and travel industry VIPs who spent three days exploring the area including visits to Tulum and Chichen Itza, Xcaret, Xplor and swimming with the whale sharks.
British Ambassador to Mexico Judith Macgregor (center left), Sir Richard Branson (center) and Mark Carney (center right) at Captain’s Cove
Virgin Atlantic will be operating twice weekly flights from London’s Gatwick Airport on 451-seat Boeing 747-400 aircraft and there has already been tremendous interest in the new route. Amanda Wills, Managing Director of Virgin Holidays also commented, “Our customers have been asking for this direct service and it is fantastic to see it finally happen. We’ve already seen a big jump in demand for Cancun
The Mexican Caribbean has become increasingly popular with British holidaymakers over the past few years. According to Her Majesty’s Ambassador Macgregor around 350,000 of them vacation in Mexico every year and the United Kingdom now occupies the third position after United States and Canada in the list of nations that send most visitors to Mexico.
Virgin Atlantic joins British Airways and Thomas Cook, which already operate three and two flights a week to Cancun respectively, and the number of visitors from the United Kingdom will continue to grow steadily. The goal of Virgin Atlantic is to triple the number of visitors to the area by 2015.