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Merida chosen to host Mexico’s 2020 tourist fair

Yucatan can show off its new international convention center and highlight the Merida's growth before 10,000 travel agents and tour operators from 89 countries.

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Yucatan’s international convention center roof deck overlooks the hotel zone. Photo: Courtesy

Merida, Yucatan — Mexico’s giant annual tourist fair finally comes to the White City in 2020, organizers announced today.

Merida’s selection as the Tianguis Turístico México 2020 host city is a big deal. The event itself is an economic boon, but beyond that, it’s a chance to impress influential tourism decision makers.

The vote was almost unanimous. Eleven of 12 ballots were cast for Merida; one committee member voted for Mexico City, which entered a late bid, according to Diario de Yucatan.

For years overlooked in favor of bigger tourist destinations such as Puerto Vallarta, Mazatlan and Cancun, next year Yucatan can show off its new international convention center and highlight Merida’s infrastructure growth before 10,000 travel agents and tour promoters from 89 countries.

The tourist fair gives a huge economic boost — an estimated 500 million pesos — to any city that hosts it. This year’s fair, in April, will be held in Acapulco. That’s where the fair was held from its 1975 inception until 2012, when organizers decided to vary locations.

State tourism officials lobbied hard for this one. Last year, the administration said they were confident that Merida had matured enough as a convention city to properly host the events.

Architect José Manuel López Campos, president of the Concanaco business guild, said the decision to appoint Merida comes at an opportune time, following some remarkable growth and development in the state and city.

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