I have collected a sample of some of the hundreds of letters sent to the Arizona Republic in response to their articles published recently about Puerto Peñasco (Rocky Point). They appear after the jump. Click below to read.
From Jim in Phoenix, Arizona:
I had a fun day reading the biased article in the Arizona Republic, without any balanced commentary from happy owners/investors!
So let me take a moment to share another point of view. I bought my first condo when there where almost none on Sandy Beach. Mary and her sales people clearly told us that even though we could rent them, that we shouldn't plan on the rental stream to keep them afloat and we didn't. We did our due diligence and understood these were INVESTMENTS to be enjoyed! One crazy person even asked me what happens after my 50 year lease is up, I was 55 then!
Simply put, we have bought and sold on Sandy Beach, looking at the master plan and the infrastructure and not miles away at this supposed site that you still deem "Rocky Point". We live part-time in a beautiful condo on the beach (Sonoran Sea) managed by a great group of owners.
Sure a group of people didn't make such a good investment, let's call it unfortunately their "Florida Swamp Land", that doesn't mean all of Florida is bad, it just means "investment" means "investment" and not guarantees.
I feel sorry for the misfortunes of those involved, I also feel sorry when the market or T-bills drop in my 401K, again that's why they call them investments!
From Don in Tucson, Arizona:
My wife and I purchased a condo in the phase two development in Las Palomas. Our condo was delivered this past June on schedule in accordance with our contract and our condo was delivered the same day as our walk through inspection after the correction that same day of three very minor punch list items. Two other minor items were corrected within the next two days after their discovery.
We reside in Tucson and did not see the article in question, but from the reports heard about it, reports from Phoenix friends who are not owners or investors in Rocky Point, the article did not reflect ours or our families experience in rocky point investments. One size does not fit all as the reporter implies and the Arizona Republic owes all of us, to include non - investors, an apology and retraction to set the record straight.
From J. M., an Owner in Sonoran Sun:
Let me be one of the many who takes exception to the lopsided brand of reporting by Dennis Wagner. I am sorry for the Playa Norte investors. A hard lesson learned. You just do not part with your hard earned dollars without detailed investigating and proper papers in your hand. This is true whether it is in Phoenix, Paris, London, Houston or Rocky Point.
I found Mr. Wagner's inflammatory reporting to be an unprofessional attack on the City of Puerto Peñasco and its' citizens. He writes as if Playa Norte represents all developments in Rocky Point. In truth Playa Norte is but a single unfortunate blot in comparison with the total successful and financially sound investments in Rocky Point.
Let's hear the real story of Rocky point Mr. Editor and put everything into proper perspective.
From Don and Beverley in Buckeye, AZ:
We have been a subscriber to your newspaper for eight years and your two articles on Puerto Peñasco (Rocky Point) certainly do not represent our views about Rocky Point.
Three years ago we bought a condo at Bella Sirena, Rocky Point and got our trust with no difficulty and then sold our condo there.
We then bought another condo at Puerta Privada, Rocky Point, and got our trust once again with no difficulty.
Our impressions of Rocky Point are far different then discribed by the two articles in your paper.
Our buying and selling has been handled very professionally by all and we are very disappointed in the one sided article your paper printed.
The town of Rocky Point has given us a great deal of pleasure over the years and does not deserve the one sided view expressed in your two articles.
From George and wife in Oak Brook, Illinois:
Wow!! What an unfortunate article regarding land/condo sales in Puerto Peñasco, it sure doesn't reflect our experience. Beginning in 2001 we saw an opportunity to purchase a beautiful beach front condo at prices significantly less than what we were accustomed to in Florida. We jumped at the prospect to own on this tranquil beach with the ambiance of an authentic fishing village. Over the last several years we have purchased investments in several different developments. We now call our second home Puerta Privada, and absolutely love it there. We have bank trusts on all the properties and have had very positive experiences with all the developers and the Mexican notario's. In fact, we are unusual in the fact that we are from Chicago and have relatives in Cleveland and friends in Milwaukee who have all purchased land or condos down there.
Please be assured that the article in the Arizona Republic does not reflect our experience.
From Colleen in Las Vegas, NV:
I am currently an owner of 2 condos at Las Palomas and one at Princesa. I have also owned in Las Conchas, as does my sister, nephew and did my mother and my other sister. I am writing this letter to you in hopes that my entire family's experience will go on the record as some of the best investments we as a group and singularly have ever made.
Each and every one of my family members, including my ex-husband and ex mother and father-in-law have invested in Rocky Point in the last 12 years and have been nothing but thrilled with the outcome. My in-laws bought their home in Cholla Bay back in 1995. We had many wonderful years of relaxation and enjoyment there with family and friends. My 2 children and my niece practically grew up there. Fishing, riding quads and motorcycles, beach time and family time were a constant. My Nephew purchased a piece of land in Las Conchas in 1997 with the intent of build a home there. My Mother and Father purchased lots in Los Conchas in 1998 as did my other two sisters and myself. I purchased my first condo at La Princess in 1999. At that time I was warned of all of the negative sides to investing "south of the border". I was called crazy for putting my trust and my hard earned money into such an unsecured investment. I was constantly chastised about all of the "horrific losses" people had experienced as a result of the way things were done "down there". As we all know, investing is just that. It is taking a risk on something that you have no guarantee as to the actual outcome until you sell it. It is a good investment if everything goes the way you planned, and, as the people old enough to remember the Phoenician and Keating scandal, a poor one if bad things happen.
My family has since sold all but one of the lots in Las Conchas and built a beautiful custom home on the remaining one. This home is paid for thanks to the investment they made in the other lots. I personally have sold one lot in Las Conchas and one Princesa condo to pay for (out right...no mortgage) my beach front condo in Las Palomas. I own another condo in Princesa and have an additional condo being delivered in March in Las Palomas as well as one in Esmeralda being delivered in 2008. I brought my boss down to RP a year and a half ago and she invested in 2 condos as well. I can't say enough about the success my family and I have had with Rocky Point.
It is scary when you place your money in the hands of anyone, be it investing in stocks, bonds, real estate..it doesn't matter. There is always opportunity for failure. My nephew invested in an unknown stock, some silly little satellite radio company called Sirius....while I invested in a company that was doing wireless fax technology. I lost my entire investment and my nephew is sitting quite pretty right now. Point is, any investment can go bad, and some do, as is the case with North Beach, but for the most part Rocky Point has been a strong and safe investment for those thousands upon thousands of us who have chosen to take the risk/invest there.
The kind of information contained in the article that was written was very lopsided. There are MANY more success stories in Puerto Peñasco than there are otherwise.