WE'VE MOVE FOR 2012

Please join us at www.bglclub.com

Baja's Best Insurance Rates and Coverage.

Join the Baja Good Life Club and received discounted rates on your Mexican auto insurance. Drivers license, RV, boats, motorcycles and more.

Lowest Overall Printing Prices in US or Mexico

The Print Supplier offers the lowest prices, fastest turnaround, and highest quality - guaranteed!

The Baja Love Ride - Round the Cape - March 21-24, La Paz

Come join us on March 21, for a 4-day bicycling tour from La Paz, Baja California Sur, around the cape and back to La Paz. Help put a positive spin on Baja for the kids.

The 2012 Baja Guides

Comprehensive guides to living, working, playing and enjoying the Baja peninsula to the fullest.

The Only Baja California Magazine

Your magazine to living the Baja Good Life; articles, discounts, adventures and more.

Monday, August 25, 2008

San Felipe Flamenco Night - New Edition to the lineup.

San Felipe Flamenco Night is going to be an evening to remember. A Flamenco
Dinner concert featuring Benjamin, one of the most talented and sought after
flamenco guitarists in the United States today. Arturo Esquivias, formally
of Third Generation will be performing a solo acoustic set during the diner
portion of the evening.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

ZAPP's "HOWL-O-WEEN Masquerade Ball Planning Meeting

ZAPP's holding the first planning meeting for ZAPP's "HOWL-O-WEEN Masquerade Ball & Dance Party" for those who'd like to Volunteer! This will be the first benefit for ZAPP of the Season.

Thursday Morning September 4th, 10am at Sundance Deli


Thursday, August 21, 2008

V Lounge Grand Opening! - Monday


V Lounge Grand Opening!

V Lounge Grand Opening! Friday, August 29, 2008

  • Special music by Sylvester.
  • Try our 4 new Micro brewed beers from Baja del Norte.
  • Cigar smoke & Local Wine tasting @ 8pm.
  • Special drinks & drink specials all day.

The V Lounge is in the San Felipe city center, downtown just off the Malecon, just a one minute walk to the Sea of Cortez. www.bajavlounge.com

Sunday, August 17, 2008

La Bamba Restaurant, a 1950’s dining experience

by Jim Moore

Owners, William and Susan Fekete pride themselves on the quality of the food, service, cleanliness and even the hot water in the banos sinks.

They make everything they can “homemade” including breakfast jams, fresh fruit pies, puddings, ice cream and cookies. They also make all of their “side” items in small batches to ensure freshness and quality - things like potato salad, coleslaw & mash potatoes with gravy.
Most known in the area for two things, their great American- style breakfast served all day and their daily ‘Blue Plate Specials’.

Breakfasts includes choices hard to find in the Baja, like potatoes instead of beans, seven types of juices, several choices of toast or biscuits, corned beef hash, grits, sausage gravy, (real pork sausage, not hot dogs) and everything is prepared to order, not off a steam table.

The daily “Blue Plate Specials” change on a monthly basis and include good American comfort food such as Chicken & Dumplings, Meatloaf, Stuffed Pork Chops, as well as foreign dishes such as Pork Schnitzel, Chicken Paprikash, and even an occasional Asian dish like Mongolian Beef.
William and Susan take very good care of their employees and as a result, their employees are dedicated and hard working, taking care of us in return. They do their best to put a smile on everyone’s face.

Stop by “La Bamba’s” at km 29.5 on the free road in Rosarito and let them put a 50’s diner smile on their face

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

The Mexico Tourism Board & Travelocity Present: "Mexican Experience Begins with a Click"!

Mexico Taps travelocity in AN Effort to capture Cost-concious American Travelers

With the concept "The Mexican experience begins with a click" the Mexico Tourism Board is taking the first step in converting Visitmexico.com into an Integral Tourism Portal (ITP)

Southlake, Texas and Miami, Fl (August 13, 2008) – As Americans scale back on travel to destinations where the U.S. dollar continues to struggle, the Mexico Tourism Board (MTB) today launched a new shopping and booking engine on Visitmexico.com for travelers in the U.S. The
new deal with Travelocity aims to bring those travelers to Mexico.

The announcement comes at a time when many travelers have already started shifting their international travel plans to the more affordable Mexico. For example, Travelocity recently reported that the share of its bookings to Mexico this summer increased 31.4%, while
destinations in Western Europe declined by 14.6%.

With the concept "Mexico's experience begins with a click," the Mexico Tourism Board seeks to reach potential tourists offering a unique practice; involving tourists and bringing them closer to Mexico by visiting the website (www.visitmexico.com), and more importantly, enabling them to book online with no need to look elsewhere.

Under the terms of the agreement, the Travelocity Partner Network, which currently powers the shopping engines for more than 100 destination marketing organizations around the world, will power the booking engine for the MTB's Visitmexico.com, providing a variety of travel products ranging from flights, hotels, car rentals, vacation packages and last minute packages for visitors around the world interested in traveling to Mexico. This marks the first time that the MTB has entered into a comprehensive agreement with an online travel company.

"The launch of this new shopping and booking engine is a major milestone in promoting all of the wonderful destinations Mexico has to offer to the world," said Oscar Fitch, CEO of the MTB. "We need to get the message out that Mexico is an affordable destination with tremendous value."

"Travelocity is honored to be playing such a key role in promoting tourism throughout Mexico," said Bryan Estep, vice president partner marketing Travelocity. "We are proud to couple the zest and spice of each of Mexico's unique destinations with our hassle-free one-stop shopping engine."

The Internet is becoming the primary means of finding information and purchasing travel services. It is a global trend and has revolutionized the way in which tourism is done. For this reason and to bolster Mexico's competitiveness in tourism markets, the MTB has embraced this technological advantage and is planning on taking its portal to the next level.

About the Mexico Tourism Board

The Mexico Tourism Board (MTB) brings together the resources of federal and state governments, municipalities and private companies to promote Mexico's tourism attractions and destinations internationally. Created in 1999, the MTB is Mexico's tourism promotion agency, and its participants include members of both the private and public sectors. The MTB has offices throughout North America, Europe, Asia and Latin America.

FOR PRESS ONLY: For additional ideas, help with a story or general travel and tourism information about Mexico, please contact the MTB's North American Press Room directly at 1-800-929-4555, by e-mail at northamericanpress@visitmexico.com, or visit our press Web site at www.visitmexicopress.com.

About Travelocity Global

Travelocity(R) is committed to being the traveler's champion --before, during and after the trip. This customer-driven focus, backed by 24/7 live phone support, competitive prices and powerful shopping technology has made Travelocity one of the largest travel companies in the world with gross bookings of more than U.S. $10 billion in 2007. Travelocity also owns and operates:

Travelocity Business(R) for corporate travel; igougo.com, a leading online travel community;
lastminute.com, a leader in European online travel; and ZUJI, a leader in Asia-Pacific online travel. Travelocity is owned by Sabre Holdings Corporation, a world leader in travel marketing and distribution.

###

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Mexican economy keeps on truckin’

Mexican economy keeps on truckin’Still another automotive plant moving to Mexico. This is the third or fourth announcement within the last year.

Hino Motors, a subsidiary of Toyota Motor and a manufacturer of diesel trucks and buses, has decided to establish a new truck manufacturing company, Hino Motors Manufacturing Mexico, in Guanajuato, Mexico, through a joint venture with Mitsui.

Hino has said that it has entered the Mexican market and started marketing its Hino 300 series, since August 2007, through Hino Motors Sales Mexico, a sales company established by Mitsui, and it will aim to increase its sales volume and position Hino’s brand in Mexico by introducing a new product, Hino 500 series.

Special Karaoke night at the Lighthouse


You don't want to miss the fun tonight at the Lighthouse Restaurant with Karaoke by The Singout Sisters & Chuy.

It's Sherry & Rodgers 46th anniversary! Way to go you two! And Tim, the owner is helping us all celebrate with them by offering a wonderful Steak Dinner with a Free Margarita for just $8.95.

Don't miss the fun and "no gifts please" per Sherry & Rodger. Just come party, sing and help the celebrate this special event.

Remember if you need a ride and don't want to worry about drinking and driving call Rodger - 576-0047 or be at the PeMex at PDO at 6 PM

See you tonight. Lets Party and Sing like the Stars that we are!!

Monday, August 11, 2008

Rosarito Wal Mart Celebrates Grand Opening

Words and photo by Carlos Durán

Excitement around town was building as rumors about speculation of Wal Mart’s day to open. Finally on Wednesday, July 30 a prominent billboard announced its Grand Opening. The store opened (on time) at 7:00 am with a cheering crowd of employees as the ribbon was cut and shoppers rushed in to the pristinely clean and well-organized store, which is part of the Pabellón Shopping Center just off the first off-ramp coming into town from the north.

As you enter, you immediately begin your shopping journey with the fruits and vegetables. There was no turning of each tomato to see which unblemished one to buy, as they were all plump and red. Following were the seafood and meat departments with lots of choices, especially for this “paella” season.

The employees at each department greeted clients with a smile and friendly “Buenos dias,” an unusual gesture in most of the other big box stores.

The “panadería” had warm bolillos already at 7:05am. There were aisles and aisles of anything and everything you could want from a grocery store, and that was only one quarter of the store. The rest is pretty much what you would expect from a Wal Mart, very similar to its US cousins.
Other big box Pabellón Shopping Center stores includes Home Depot, Ashley Furniture, DAX and Coppel, and at least 25 more stores to open in the near future.

The only other stores now open are Vips Restaurant, Peter Piper Pizza, Baja Express Chinese and the movie complex Cinépolis.

Source: Rosarito, Baja California, Mexico. (PRWEB) July 13, 2008

Sunday, August 10, 2008

San Felipe Flamenco Night - Dinner & Concert




Flamenco Night

BenjaminBenjamin is one of the most talented and sought after flamenco guitarists in the United States today. He has played in theatres all over the country and performed with some of todays most revered flamenco artists from Spain.

Originally from San Francisco Bay Area but now out of Los Angeles. He has the reputation of not only a great composer and band leader, but as a refined Flamenco artist and accompanyist, with full understanding of the authentic and deeply complex spanish formulas found in this guitar music.

Benjamin's repertoire is a mixture of traditional and modern Flamenco as well as original compositions. He also has an extensive repertoire of famous gypsy and classical selections, as well as popular music everyone is sure to recognize. Needless to say, Benjamin's performances are highly sought out for the unique ambience that he creates.

ONLY 100 SEATS AVAILABLE
This evenings includes dinner and wine. There are no physical tickets, it is by RESERVATION only. Reservations can be made by CLICK HERE or by calling 686-230-9933. Reserve your seat while they last.

Reserve Now




Saturday, August 9, 2008

A Glorious Past Combines with a Promising Future

Mexico’s Legendary Rosarito Beach Hotel Becomes A 500-Room Resort With Aug. 2 Gala Celebrations

by Ron Raposa

It started out as a 12-room hunting lodge in 1925 and for over eight decades it has had a magical hold on Baja California and the millions who have visited or stayed there.

On August 2, the landmark Rosarito Beach Hotel will officially become a 500 room and suite resort as it hosts the grand opening celebration for its spectacular oceanfront 17-story, 271-suite Pacifico Tower.

The ribbon cutting will be at 5 p.m. Three by-invitationonly themed celebrations will start at 5:30, in the Pacifico Tower, plus a fourth in the hotel’s garden area for all guests. Reservations are now being

accepted and early reservations are suggested. More than 1,000 people are expected. The Governor of Baja California, José Guadalupe Osuna Millán, will be among those on hand to participate in the celebration of this historic occasion.

In 83 years the Rosartio Breach Hotel has guests including celebrities and royalty from around the world, so many in fact that it spawned the birth of the popular tourist town of Rosarito Beach which literally grew up around it.

The Pacifico Tower marks the first time that the option of ownership has ever been offered to the public, as fully furnished suites are offered for sale with the option of guests placing them in the hotel rental program.

The Rosarito Beach Hotel is now in its third generation of family ownership, the principal owner is Hugo Torres, the mayor of Rosarito Beach, a position he holds for the second time. The hotel has undergone extensive renovations of its existing facilities, including the grand lobby murals, as well as the addition of many more amenities for its guests, including an infinity pool and rooftop restaurant plus a greatly expanded selection of accommodations and rate options. A new state of the art conference center is scheduled to break ground in December.

Following an extraordinary past, the Rosarito Beach Hotel is ready to unveil its promise to the future with the grand opening of the Pacifico Tower. Suites in the Pacifico Tower will be available as of Aug. 1 and can be reserved now. Media Contact: Ron Raposa

619-948-3740, ronraposa@hotmail.com

La Bamba Restaurant, a 1950’s dining experience

Article by Jim Moore

Owners, William and Susan Fekete pride themselves on the quality of the food, service, cleanliness and even the hot water in the banos sinks.

They make everything they can “homemade” including breakfast jams, fresh fruit pies, puddings, ice cream and cookies. They also make all of their “side” items in small batches to ensure freshness and quality - things like potato salad, coleslaw & mash potatoes with gravy.

Most known in the area for two things, their great American- style breakfast served all day and their daily ‘Blue Plate Specials’. Breakfasts includes choices hard to find in the Baja, like potatoes instead of beans, seven types of juices, several choices of toast or biscuits, corned beef hash, grits, sausage gravy, (real pork sausage, not hot dogs) and everything is prepared to order, not off a steam table.

The daily “Blue Plate Specials” change on a monthly basis and include good American comfort food such as Chicken & Dumplings, Meatloaf, Stuffed Pork Chops, as well as foreign dishes such as Pork Schnitzel, Chicken Paprikash, and even an occasional Asian dish like Mongolian Beef.

William and Susan take very good care of their employees and as a result, their employees are dedicated and hard working, taking care of us in return. They do their best to put a smile on everyone’s face.

Stop by “La Bamba’s” at km 29.5 on the free road in Rosarito and let them put a 50’s diner smile on your face

New Full Assistance Program Launched in Rosarito for Visitors and Retirees

Serena Senior Care held their first annual Serena Senior Fair, Health and Home Expo at the historic Rosarito Beach Hotel on July 26th, 2008, where they launched the Serena Full Assistance Card.

The Serena Full Assistance Card is a support system for visitors and retirees living in the coastal region between Tijuana and Ensenada, It provides bilingual assistance by telephone through a toll free number both in Mexico and in the U.S., 24 hours a day all year round, to help its members resolve emergencies or those daily challenges of life. The support is focused on Health and Property Care.

The medical assistance component of the Assistance Card starts with establishing a local medical record with a certified physician that includes basic blood tests and an interview with a doctor. Having a medical record in Mexico could be a lifesaver in case of emergency, as dispatchers can provide timely information to paramedics or ambulance operators. Medical records will be available online through secure access, which would be extremely helpful for designated loved ones that can make decisions for card members and facilitate making any arrangements or dealing with authorities.

Additionally the program includes substantial savings and special packages with the best doctors, hospitals and clinics in the region, including the state-of-the-art facilities of Angeles Hospital in Tijuana or the convenience of service at Bonanova Hospital in Rosarito. Physicians in the network include Geriatricians, Cardiologist, Urologist, Orthopedics
and Traumatology.

The Fair as well as the Full Assistance Card was developed by Serena Senior Care, an In-Home Assisted Living and Property Care corporation established in Rosarito. The offices are located in Arco Plaza, next to the Arch Exit on the Tijuana-Ensenada toll road and can be reached at (661) 612 9090, or info@serenaseniorcare.com. More information on the Fair may be found on www.serenaseniorcare.com/fair.

Mexico’s Wine Revolution

The Spaniards planted the first vineyards in the Americas in Mexico in the sixteenth century.

By Steve Dryden

The Spaniards planted the first vineyards in the Americas in Mexico in the sixteenth century. From these early vineyards of Mission grapes, Jesuit missionaries send vines and cuttings to Peru, Argentina, and Chile. By 1701, the first hybrid cuttings of Vitis vinifera (European stock) were planted in Baja California at Mission San Javier on Loredo Bay. Later in 1780, Franciscan Friar Junipero Serra sent cuttings and plants from the mission vineyards in San Diego to all the Alta California mission sites reaching Sonoma by 1830.

Bodegas de Santo Tomas was the first commercial Baja California winery operation established in 1888. The quality and quantity of their wine was limited due to the use of the Mission grape. The following year, James Concannon, winery and vineyard owner in Livermore, California introduced French varietal cuttings throughout Mexico, followed in 1910 with cuttings of Zinfandel and Petite Sirah. Then in 1932, Esteban Ferro and Dimitri Tchelistcheff imported
Italian varieties to include Nebbiolo, Dolcetto and Barbara into Baja California. In addition, the Cetto family brought more Italian and French vines into the region and Camillo Magoni in 1970’s to include Cabernet Sauvignon Blanc, Merlot, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc and Chenin Blanc.

After acquiring more vineyard properties in 1990, Don Luis Cetto added Syrah, Sangiovese, Petite Verdot, Malbec and Viognier to his portfolio of classic grape varietals. Mexico was now blessed with an abundance of superior grapes and well on the road to creating premium wine.

These early leaders, planners and visionaries developed a wide variety of diverse vineyards of classic European varietals in selected microclimates that has led to Baja California’s
“silent revolution” in creating premium wine. Ninety percent of all Mexican wine grapes are
grown and produced in five distinct areas: Valle de Guadalupe, Valle de Santo Tomas, Valle de San Vicente Valle de las Palmas, and Ojos Negros. In addition, the State of Sonora has two important wine growing regions located in Hermosillo and Caborca where vineyards of Barbera, Dulce, Cardinal, Ruby Cabernet and Palomino provide juice for a handful of small boutique wineries. Further south in Coahuila, Durango, Zacatecas, Aguascalientes and Queretaro grapes are grown and wine is produced.

About the time (1980’s) many of the classic European vines were reaching maturity with the production of premium fruit, the real transformation of the Mexican wine industry began. L.A. Cetto, Bodega de Santo Tomas and Pedro Domecq wineries began accumulating international awards with wine made from those mature grapes found at various sites throughout the region. Adding to the excitement was the arrival of several small boutique wineries with a focus on creating limited production-premium wine, using state-of-the-art technology, under the direction of professionally trained enologists. Cavas Valmar (1983) was the first artisan winery in Ensenada, followed by Monte Xanic winery as the first boutique facility on the scene at Guadalupe Valley in 1988. The artisan and boutique winery movement brought in self-taught and trained enologists from Mexico City,France, Germany, Switzerland, Argentina, Chile, and other regions of Mexico.

Today, there are over thirty licensed wineries in Mexico and as many “unofficial” winery operations located throughout the country. In addition, a new artisan movement is attracting hundreds of aspiring handcrafted winemakers each year. Viticulture, viniculture and enology classes are being offered in Ensenada at the UBC and in Valle de Guadalupe, near El Porvenir, a small winemaking and artisan olive oil school is training many locals and “moonlighting” professionals.

It’s an exciting time for Mexico’s emerging wine culture. For example, at Guateque 2008, an exclusive wine event focusing on new artisan wines and winemakers, over twenty-five participants proudly displayed and shared samples of their first and second year wine releases to an enthusiastic group of over three hundred international wine lovers. And, with each year, the wine just keeps getting better and better!

Most of the wineries, wine tasting rooms, restaurants and wine country lodging facilities are
centered in Valle de Guadalupe near Ensenada. This premier wine country is blessed with a Mediterranean climate, located ten to twenty-five miles from the Pacific Ocean, along the Tecate - Ensenada Highway 3.

About fifteen of the twenty wineries are open on the weekends and about half of those during the week.

The most “user friendly” wineries in order as you drive from Ensenada along Highway 3 are: Vinisterra, Casa Vieja, Viña de Liceaga, Three Women, Viños Sueños, Viños Fuentes, Monte Xanic, Viños Bibayoff, Pedro Domecq, L.A. Cetto and Do–a Lupe. Those wineries requiring advance reservations are Casa de Piedra, Adobe Guadalupe Vineyards and Pau Pijoan.

Recent additions to the Guadalupe Valley wine country are two new hotels: Hacienda Guadalupe (upscale) and (budget) Hotel Plaza Fatima. Finally, gourmet coffee located in a “world class” art gallery can be enjoyed at Jardin Las Veredas, near Vinisterra winery. Several wineries are located in the town of Ensenada to include Cavas Valmar, Roganto, Bodegas de Santo Tomas and the artisan wines of Jose Louis Durand. Of course, you might know that several of Baja California’s top gourmet restaurants can be found in that port city.

Mexico’s wine industry and wine culture is “booming.” Furthermore, Ensenada is becoming the “gourmet food and wine capital” of Mexico with close proximity to the wine region, abundant fresh seafood, organic produce, gourmet cheese and artisan olive oil. Maybe, it’s time to explore some “bottled treasures of delight” from Mexico and discover our “silent revolution” in creating premium wine. Our wine region awaits your exploration and we’re here with our famous Baja California hospitality, eager to share our amazing wine culture with you, your family and friends. Viva Mexico!

Steve Dryden is a wine and food writer living in Valle de Guadalupe where he guides private wine tours for individuals, couples and small groups. He can be reached at sbdryden@hotmail.com

1st Annual Mexico Living & Lion’s Club Horseshoe Tournament

The 1st
Annual Mexico
Living Horseshoe
Tournament, held
Saturday July 5th
at the beautiful
Cantu Cove was
a good time for
all and a great
success for
Mexico Living
Magazine and
San Felipe Lion’s
Club. The turnout
was far greater
than expected and an overwhelming 32 teams
registering, each with wild names. Second and third
place battling it out by truck headlights as the sun
dropped completely out of sight.
Mexico Living wants to thank the Lions Club
and Rick, Rodger and Bob for enduring the heat in
the PAWS THAT REFRESH, Lois and Valerie Cantu,
Clarence, San Felipe Mayor Hazael Sierra, Sundance Deli, John Hall and Mark Dille, all the participants, our sponsors San Felipe Moving & Storage, Conficasa Mortgages, Amor Property, Playa del Paraiso, San Felipe Disposal and Perla del Mar. It was a great the event and we hope to see you all next year.

Greg & Jon Anderson, team Wassupononuppie (no really) went undefeated for 1st.

FIRST PLACE - WASSUP ON ON UPPIE
Greg & Jon Anderson

SECOND PLACE - TOO SLICK
Slick & Henry

THIRD PLACE TIE
THE BARACHOS
Craig & Al
THE BLONDE BOMBERS
Debbie Lux & Barbi DeVaul

August Letters

We picked your publication up at the Palm [restaurant]
in Cantamar. it’s a great little magazine. good maps,
lots of useful info, interesting articles. keep it up and
thank you.
--- Stacy Magic, unknown location

ML: Thank you, we work hard at it and truly appreciate
the kind words.

Right on the money! Yes, Mexico is safer than
America. I have been living here for five years without
any problems of any kind. Thank you for the article
and putting a little perspective on all the BS the US
news media have been spewing.
--- Charles S., Rosarito Beach

ML: Too often US reporters will regurgitate news off
the internet, sensationalize it a little and release it.
Many have never even been to Mexico.
Mexico is safer because all the gangsters live here
now. Whose hot legs are on the cover of the mag?
Mucho love from Ventura.
-Frank Boross, Ventura California


ML: You also have great waves and yes those are
Rachel’s, aren’t I lucky. Love back at ya.
Can I get the magazine in the states? I like the new
look of the magazine.
-Jason Ramirez, Northridge California

ML: Yes. You can get a subscription for $24 a
year (we’re only charging for postage) and have it
delivered to your home or office. Be sure to get one
for your friends and family…wink…wink…We are
also working on a US distribution deal and will have
US newsstand soon enough.

Love your magazine. Both the health and tourism
issues have helped illustrate what I’ve been telling
people for some time, keep it up.
--Lynda C.

ML: We promise.

Friday, August 1, 2008

New Computer and Technology Solutions in San Felipe

Just when you need to get something from your computer, whether a file or something from the Internet, your computer crashes. We’ve all been there.

Now in situations like this, Computing Integral Solutions of San Felipe can help. They’re providing complete computing solutions including system troubleshooting, diagnostics and optimization, virus and spyware detection and removal to data, hard drive recovery, hardware and software installations and custom built computer systems, and they do it either in their office or onsite.

Computing Integral Solutions is a partnership and friendship, between two unrelated guys with the same last name, Cesar Rodriquez, an Electronic Engineer, from Engineering Faculty of U.A.B.C., and a certified technician from Microsoft and Juan Rodriquez, an Informatics Engineer, from the engineering school of the Mexicali Technologic Institute.

Together they provide years of knowledge and experience. Cesar has been working with computers for 12 years, the last 10 in a Mexicali factory as a Manufacturing Engineer, where one of his duties was to keep the computers and network working, along with training and technical support and Juan has been in the technical support business for about 11 years.

Cesar’s family arrived in San Felipe in 1976, when his father started his medical practice. He went to school in San Felipe and later continued his University studies in Mexicali, finishing as an Electronic Engineer in 1996 and stayed in Mexicali for the jobs opportunities.

Juan was born and raised in Mexicali, and as many people there, he had to work to help his family with money. When he was able, he enrolled in school and graduated as an Informatics Engineer.

They provide hardware and solutions for software and hardware problems. They don’t currently sell software, but plan to add software sales soon.

Cesar and Juan want to be the best option in computing technical support for people, small and medium business, by always offering their service with quality and honesty.

”It’s our number one priority and goal is customer satisfaction and quality Service. We assist our clients in order to gain long-term friendship and business.”
You can reach Cesar and Juan at 686-577-2370.

Desert Realty is gearing up

by Benjamin Eugene

When moving to Mexico, many people will develop a plan, create a list of goals and then they’ll move, not Jose Aguilar, or Joe, as many know him, “I was just passing by and one thing lead to another, I got invited to work in real estate and I got in the business.” That was seven years ago.
Joe was born in Mexico, but grew up in San Jose and Simi Valley California. He says he moved back to Mexico, settling in San Felipe for the mountains and the people, but especially the sun, sand and Sea of Cortez.

After nearly five years learning the trade, Joe started Desert Realty. “I learned from their mistakes,” says Joe, about working for others, “and when I opened my business I made sure not to make the same mistakes and I know what the clients want and expect.”

Now, just two and half years later, Joe and Desert Realty employ seven and offers complete residential and commercial services. They are marketing throughout Mexico and continue to develop their commercial real estate business. Joe himself has served as Secretary of the Chamber of Commerce (COTUCO), and the Secretary of the Real Estate Association of San Felipe.

Desert Realty offers experience in San Felipe, Puertecitos, San Luis Gonzaga, Bahia De Los Angeles, Ensenada, and Baja California real estate as well as intimate local area knowledge, and they work extensively to help buyers and sellers meet their real estate goals.

As Americans continue to struggle with the rising cost of living and a declining housing market, Mexican real estate is beginning to really make sense. Although, there has been in decline in sales, property prices in Mexico are significantly more affordable than in the U.S. In the fishing village of San Felipe, which historically slows during the summer months, Joe says it’s “better then the states, slow but still making sales.”

Desert Realty is focusing on marketing and getting ready for the when the market rises to service the forthcoming retirement of the baby boomer population and their demand for affordable retirement property.

You can meet Joe, and find out more about Desert Realty by visiting him at Calle Chetumal #400 San Felipe, B.C. Mexico. Phone (686) 577 6336 Fax (686)577 6337 From U.S(619) 567 4317. www.desertrealtysanfelipe.com.

Dream Dining at La Vendimia

by Lisa Shannon

Dinner at La Vendimia Restaurant in Ensenada is always a pleasure. I have had the opportunity to try several different things on the menu and have enjoyed each bite…and sip! Their wine list is spectacular, and they have some of the finest Mexican wines available to pair with any meal.

During our last two trips to the west coast of the Baja peninsula, we dined at La Vendimia for lunch and dinner. I had the most exquisite filet mignon I think I have ever had. The Filete de La Vendimia is a choice filet slathered in a reduced red wine sauce with mushrooms. The meat is so tender that it simply cannot be described. It’s like, a first kiss soft, if you can remember what that was like. The taste lingered on my tongue long after I swallowed my bite, and the aroma lingered in the air as I anticipated my next bite. Sides included a green salad with vinaigrette dressing, a baked potato and vegetables. With my filet, I enjoyed a lovely LACetto Cabernet Sauvignon, a deep red and aromatic Baja California wine. Our server was pleasant and attentive, a real treasure in Baja.

I would certainly recommend this order and restaurant to anyone who can appreciate a well-prepared filet and a great glass of wine. Visit Andres and Katrina, the owners of this fabulous place, and don’t forget to tell them that Mexico Living Magazine gave their service Five Stars.

La Vendimia is located on Riveroll between the main boulevard and Lopez Mateos.

Vinos Fuentes: Promoting Quality Wine and Family Values

by Steve Dryden

Guadalupe Valley in Baja California is a magical and enchanting valley and home to Mexico’s premier wine growing and wine production region. One family of growers is Hector and Miguel Fuentes, along with brothers Mark and Hector Fuentes Jr. These native Baja Californians have a long history of farming in Mexicali and Valle de Guadalupe.

It all started in 1958 when the Fuentes family moved from their farm in Mexicali to raise fruit and cattle in Valle de Guadalupe. The Fuentes family purchased about seventy-five prime hectares in the heart of Guadalupe Valley where the river runs through it, and began the long process of planting a large selection of various fruits and grapes. Hector Fuentes was a visionary with a creative imagination, determination and college degrees from Texas A&M in Animal Husbandry and Soil Sciences. A few years ago he retired to a remote, sustainable mountain retreat and turned the operation over to his son, Miguel.

Miguel Fuentes eagerly took over the general management of the operation and with the help of his father and brothers they gradually decided to focus on high quality vineyard management and artisan winemaking. Miquel has an advanced education from local Catholic schools in Ensenada and a degree in International Agricultural Development from US Davis.

According to Miguel Fuentes, “Hospitality is the key here and we plan to built a family-oriented project where there is something to offer the entire family from young children to grandparents. We are a family that respects and appreciates the needs of everyone in a family and we plan to share that perspective with our guests. The children can play in the recreation area with supervision, while the parents enjoy wines in our tasting room. We’ll offer food in our family-style restaurant, snacks on the patio, barbecues, and even host special events to include birthday parties and weddings.”

Vinos Fuentes has seventy hectares of natural and sustainable land on both sides of the Guadalupe Riverbed. Twelve hectares are planted with Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Tempranillo with several additional plots are planted in table grapes to include: Ruby Red, Globe, Superior and Thompson seedless grapes. In 2008, Miguel will plant Nebbiolo, Syrah, French Columbard and Muscat vines to compliment his vino portfolio.

Letters to the Editor

We picked your publication up at the Palm [restaurant] in Cantamar. it’s a great little magazine. good maps, lots of useful info, interesting articles. keep it up and thank you.
--- Stacy Magic, unknown location

ML: Thank you, we work hard at it and truly appreciate the kind words.

Right on the money! Yes, Mexico is safer than America. I have been living here for five years without any problems of any kind. Thank you for the article and putting a little perspective on all the BS the US news media have been spewing.
--- Charles S., Rosarito Beach

ML: Too often US reporters will regurgitate news off the internet, sensationalize it a little and release it. Many have never even been to Mexico.

Mexico is safer because all the gangsters live here now. Whose hot legs are on the cover of the mag? Mucho love from Ventura.
-Frank Boross, Ventura California

ML: You also have great waves and yes those are Rachel’s, aren’t I lucky. Love back at ya.

Can I get the magazine in the states? I like the new look of the magazine.
-Jason Ramirez, Northridge California

ML: Yes. You can get a subscription for $24 a month (we’re only charging for postage) and have it delivered to your home or office. Be sure to get one for your friends and family…wink…wink…We are also working on a US distribution deal and will have US newsstand soon enough.

Love your magazine. Both the health and tourism issues have helped illustrate what I’ve been telling people for some time, keep it up.
--Lynda C.

ML: We promise.

Mexico to refund taxes to tourists

by John Flinn

Beginning in June, foreign visitors who arrive by air or sea will be able to get refunds on the 15-percent value added tax (VAT) they paid during their Mexican vacations.

“We know that Americans are facing a very severe recession and that some of them are choosing to only travel within the United States,” Benjamín Díaz, a Mexico Tourism Ministry official, told BusinessWeek. “It’s important for Mexico to offer those Americans who decide to travel abroad despite the recession an extra economic incentive: giving them back their tax.”

Mexico is setting up kiosks at five major international airports - Mexico City, Cancun, Guadalajara, Los Cabos and Puerto Vallarta - where visitors can reclaim the VAT they’ve paid on goods totaling at least 1,200 pesos ($115).

To qualify, purchases must be made at approved businesses with credit or debit cards issued outside Mexico. Visitors must present their passports at the time of purchase and get a receipt and official VAT refund form from the store.

Taxes paid on hotels and meals will not be refunded, and those who cross the border by land are not eligible.

For those who qualify, half of the VAT will be refunded immediately in pesos, up to a maximum of 10,000 pesos (about $955). The balance will be credited to the tourists’ credit cards or bank accounts within 40 days, according to the announcement.

Starting next year, the program will be expanded to other airports and cruise ports.
Tourism is Mexico’s third-largest source of revenue, bringing in $13 billion last year. Eighty percent of the 21 million foreign tourists visiting Mexico last year were from the United States, lured in part by the fact that Mexico is one of the few countries where the U.S. dollar has actually increased in value over the past year.

The VAT decision, Díaz told BusinessWeek, is aimed at keeping working- and middle-class Americans returning to Mexico’s beaches and Maya ruins.

Mexico to refund taxes to tourists

by John Flinn

Beginning in June, foreign visitors who arrive by air or sea will be able to get refunds on the 15-percent value added tax (VAT) they paid during their Mexican vacations.

“We know that Americans are facing a very severe recession and that some of them are choosing to only travel within the United States,” Benjamín Díaz, a Mexico Tourism Ministry official, told BusinessWeek. “It’s important for Mexico to offer those Americans who decide to travel abroad despite the recession an extra economic incentive: giving them back their tax.”

Mexico is setting up kiosks at five major international airports - Mexico City, Cancun, Guadalajara, Los Cabos and Puerto Vallarta - where visitors can reclaim the VAT they’ve paid on goods totaling at least 1,200 pesos ($115).

To qualify, purchases must be made at approved businesses with credit or debit cards issued outside Mexico. Visitors must present their passports at the time of purchase and get a receipt and official VAT refund form from the store.

Taxes paid on hotels and meals will not be refunded, and those who cross the border by land are not eligible.

For those who qualify, half of the VAT will be refunded immediately in pesos, up to a maximum of 10,000 pesos (about $955). The balance will be credited to the tourists’ credit cards or bank accounts within 40 days, according to the announcement.

Starting next year, the program will be expanded to other airports and cruise ports.
Tourism is Mexico’s third-largest source of revenue, bringing in $13 billion last year. Eighty percent of the 21 million foreign tourists visiting Mexico last year were from the United States, lured in part by the fact that Mexico is one of the few countries where the U.S. dollar has actually increased in value over the past year.

The VAT decision, Díaz told BusinessWeek, is aimed at keeping working- and middle-class Americans returning to Mexico’s beaches and Maya ruins.

Al’s Backstreet Patio Grill - Introduces New Chef – Berthy Perea


Article & Photo by Kathy Preppernau

How do you find a great new chef? You steal her and according to Al, owner of Al’s Back Street Cantina and Patio Grill, that’s exactly what he did. Al found Berthy at Tijuana’s Famous Los Arcos Restaurant where she had been working for 22 years. He brought her to San Felipe to be his new Chef. She is a single mom with 3 boys and has been a chef for 23 years. She really likes the tranquility of San Felipe but says she has to get used to the heat.

She was born in Sinaloa, Mexico and started learning to cook when she was just 8 years old. A good friend had a restaurant there and she began to learn from him. First, learning how to make cakes and flans, she started as the cook’s helper and progressed to Pastry Chef and by his side learned to cook all the different Mexican dishes.

Twenty-two years ago, Berthy helped open the Tijuana Las Arcos Restaurant and has since expanded her talents to Italian, Mediterranean and Spanish dishes as well as Mexican Food. She specializes in seafood and steaks, but her Mexican dishes seem to be the most popular right now. My first treat was the Diablitos “Little Devils” which are yellow chili’s stuffed with Marlin. Just a little hot and oh so tasty. I’ve since enjoyed the Taco Gobernador and Taco de Marlin and most recently her ceviche and the Faitas de Pollo with fresh made guacamole - yummy!

Everything is made fresh daily from the salsa and guacamole to the fresh salads, ceviche and hamburgers. She is very particular with the quality of her meals. She even filets the fish at the time of your order before cooking. Now that’s fresh!

Al’s Back Street Cantina and Patio Grill is open Thursday through Sunday from 6 PM to 2 AM during the month of August but after Labor Day will be open Thursday through Monday again and be opening at 4 pm instead of 6 pm.

Al’s Back Street Cantina was awarded BEST BAR TO TAKE OUT OF TOWN GUESTS by popular vote of the people in the Best of San Felipe reader’s poll.

Fiestas de la Vendimia has Deep Roots in Ensenada

by Steve Dryden

Harvest season is a time of abundance, excitement and celebration in Mexico’s premier grape growing and wine production region. Historically, Ensenada has been the “hub” of the wine culture in Baja California and was the original location for the first Fiestas de la Vendimia. In the early days of the this “wine culture” celebration (1982) the event was organized and promoted by the Club de Leones de Ensenada or the Lions Club and a few small wineries. The 1986 IV Fiesta y Feria de la Vendimia was a two day event held on August 30th and 31st with an admission fee of $65 usd. Three wineries were involved in the first events to include Bodega Santo Tomas, Bodega San Antonio and Cavas Valmar. Fernando Martain of Cavas Valmar and the management of Santo Tomas winery have been involved in the event planning from the beginning and continue to this day.

La Cofradia del Vino, a group of Ensenada residents who wanted to learn about and explore the world of wine and gourmet culinary delights, took over the management, planning and organization of Fiestas de la Vendimia in 1987. Hector Arriola, Octavio Jimenez, Ignacio Crespo Pozvelo, Raul Borquez and Fernando Martain were among the first visionary leaders who truly believed in the future of the Baja California wine culture. According to Fernando Martain, “the real purpose of this event was to promote the regional wine culture.” In fact, in a 1991 interview with San Diego Union staff writer Diane Lindquist, about the Mexican wine industry, Martain stated, “this is only the beginning, in a few years more, there might be a hundred wineries.” In that same interview, Hans Backhoff, one of the owners of Monte Xanic winery added, “everybody thinks the weather is too hot and you cannot produce good grapes here, but that is wrong. This is a fantastic microclimate. With this exceptional year (1991) I think we’re going to be discovered.” Today, Mexico’s “silent revolution” in creating high quality wine shows that both Martain and Backhoff were right on target! In 2008, there are many new wineries in the region and several hundred individuals are making artisan and boutique wines.

The wine association of Baja California or Asociacion de Vinicultores de la CANACINTRA joined forces with la Cofradia del Vino to host the event in the early 1990’s. A few years later, the wine association took over the entire management and promotion of the festival and continues in that role today. Interestingly, the Fiestas de la Vendimia has become “too successful.” For example, even though tickets are not being issued for this year’s events yet, many of the festivities are already sold out. I suspect that somebody forgot to tell the City of Ensenada and the Baja California wine culture that the economy is slowing down! In fact, the regional economy is growing at a study rate and much of that has to do with our “emerging” wine culture that includes special events, culinary arts, artisan gourmet food products, restaurants, wine bars, wine country hotels, B&B’s, new wineries, and several winemaking and culinary educational programs. Fiestas de la Vendimia 2008 takes place from July 31 through August 17 with over fifty spectacular events. This festival is like an “old vine” with deep roots in our region, it keeps growing while producing quality fruit in the form of “world class” entertainment and hospitality. Don’t miss out!

Rosarito Hotel: A Glorious Past Combines with a Promising Future


by Ron Raposa,

It started out as a 12-room hunting lodge in 1925 and for over eight decades it has had a magical hold on Baja California and the millions who have visited or stayed there.

On August 2, the landmark Rosarito Beach Hotel will officially become a 500 room and suite resort as it hosts the grand opening celebration for its spectacular oceanfront 17-story, 271-suite Pacifico Tower.

The ribbon cutting will be at 5 p.m. Three by-invitation-only themed celebrations will start at 5:30, in the Pacifico Tower, plus a fourth in the hotel’s garden area for all guests. Reservations are now being accepted and early reservations are suggested.

More than 1,000 people are expected. The Governor of Baja California, José Guadalupe Osuna Millán, will be among those on hand to participate in the celebration of this historic occasion.
In 83 years the Rosartio Breach Hotel has guests including celebrities and royalty from around the world, so many in fact that it spawned the birth of the popular tourist town of Rosarito Beach which literally grew up around it.

The Pacifico Tower marks the first time that the option of ownership has ever been offered to the public, as fully furnished suites are offered for sale with the option of guests placing them in the hotel rental program.

The Rosarito Beach Hotel is now in its third generation of family ownership, the principal owner is Hugo Torres, the mayor of Rosarito Beach, a position he holds for the second time.

The hotel has undergone extensive renovations of its existing facilities, including the grand lobby murals, as well as the addition of many more amenities for its guests, including an infinity pool and rooftop restaurant plus a greatly expanded selection of accommodations and rate options. A new state of the art conference center is scheduled to break ground in December.

Following an extraordinary past, the Rosarito Beach Hotel is ready to unveil its promise to the future with the grand opening of the Pacifico Tower. Suites in the Pacifico Tower will be available as of Aug. 1 and can be reserved now. Media Contact: Ron Raposa
619-948-3740, ronraposa@hotmail.com

Rosarito Health Assistance Card

Serena Senior Care held their first annual Serena Senior Fair, Health and Home Expo at the historic Rosarito Beach Hotel on July 26th, 2008, where they launched the Serena Full Assistance Card.

The Serena Full Assistance Card, is a support system for visitors and retirees living in the coastal region between Tijuana and Ensenada, by providing bilingual assistance by telephone through a toll free number both in Mexico and in the U.S., 24 hours a day all year round, to help its members resolve emergencies or those daily challenges of life. The support is focused on Health and Property Care.

The medical assistance component of the Assistance Card starts with establishing a local medical record with a certified physician that includes basic blood tests and an interview with a doctor. Having a medical record in Mexico could be a lifesaver in case of emergency, as dispatchers can provide timely information to paramedics or ambulance operators. Medical records will be available online through secure access, which would be extremely helpful for designated loved ones that can make decisions for card members and facilitate making any arrangements or dealing with authorities.

Additionally the program includes substantial savings and special packages with the best doctors, hospitals and clinics in the region, including the state-of-the-art facilities of Angeles Hospital in Tijuana or the convenience of service at Bonanova Hospital in Rosarito. Physicians in the network include Geriatricians, Cardiologist, Urologist, Orthopedics and Traumatology.
The Fair as well as the Full Assistance Card was developed by Serena Senior Care, an In-Home Assisted Living and Property Care corporation established in Rosarito. The offices are located in Arco Plaza, next to the Arch Exit on the Tijuana-Ensenada toll road and can be reached at (661) 612 9090, or info@serenaseniorcare.com. More information on the Fair may be found on www.serenaseniorcare.com/fair.

Source: Rosarito, Baja California, Mexico. (PRWEB) July 13, 2008

Valle de Guadalupe Wine festival Program 2008

Valle de Guadalupe Wine festival Program
July 31 - 17 2008

IV INTERNATIONAL SEMINAR OF VITIVINICULTURE
Conferences on vineyard management and enological aspects in the production of quality wines. Where: Hotel Coral y Marina Sponsor: INIFAP, FundaciÛn Produce B.C. Hosted By: Asociacion de Vinicultores de Baja California Cost: $35.00 Dlls. When: Thursday July 31, 2008 at 9am

18th WINE EXPERIENCE
A presentation of the wines, labels and vintages of Baja California, music, food tasting and art. Where: Centro Cultural Riviera Sponsor: INIFAP, FundaciÛn Produce B.C. Hosted By: Asociacion de Vinicultores de Baja California Cost: $30.00 Dlls When: Friday August 1, 2008 at 7pm

GOLF TOURNAMENT
Golf tournament, “Four man scramble” , wine tastings at each hole, exquisite food sampling, award dinner with prizes, raffle & auction. Where: Real del Mar Golf Club, Km. 19.5 Carretera Escénica Tijuana-Ensenada Hosted By: Hotel Calafia y Asociación de Vinicultores de Baja California Cost: $150.00 Dlls. When: Saturday August 2, 2008 at 8:30am

16th INTERNATIONAL WINE CONTEST “ENSENADA LAND OF WINE”
Professional judges select the best wines in the competition
Where: Hotel Coral y Marina Sponsor: Escuela de Enología y Gastronomía de la Universidad Autónoma de Baja California. Cost: $30.00 Dlls. When: Saturday August 2, 2008 at 9am

WINEMAKERS VISITS I
The winemakers host visitors at their wineries to taste and describe their wines. Where: Diversas Casas Vinícolas
Sponsor: Asociación de Vinicultores de Baja California Cost: $35.00 Dlls. When:Saturday August 2, 2008 at 9am

WINE + LOBSTER
Lunch in our San Antonio vineyard, with Puerto Nuevo-style lobster and wide selection of Chardonnays wines from several wineries of Baja California. Where: Rancho San Gabriel Km. 95 Carr. Ensenada-Tecate Sponsor: Bodegas de Santo Tomás Cost: Call When:Saturday August 2, 2008 at 1pm

ART ROUTE
tapas, music, Art. and wine. wines from several wineries of Baja California. Where: Jardín Las Veredas en el Valle de San Antonio de las Minas Sponsor: Gartes, A.C. Cost: Free When: Saturday August 2, 2008 at 5pm

GALA DINNER
Formal dinner and wine auction. Where: Adobe Guadalupe Winery, Valle de Guadalupe. Sponsor: Vinícola Adobe Guadalupe Cost: $100.00 Dlls. When: Saturday August 2, 2008 at 6:30pm

SONGS AND WINE IN TECATE
A sunset at the foothills of Sacred Cuchumá Mountain, music by the INNUENDO group of Mexicali, acompanied by hors-d’oeuvres and Barón Balché wines.
Where: Parque del Profesor. Calle Prolongación Cuchumá s/n, Tecate, B.C. Sponsor: Corredor Histórico CAREM, A.C. y Vinos Barón Balché Cost: $50.00 Dlls. When: Saturday August 2, 2008 at 7pm

COUNTRY LUNCHEON
Lamb, house wine and live music. Where: Puerto de Cruceros de Ensenada Sponsor: Vinícola /Viña de Liceaga Winery. Cost: $60.00 Dlls When: Sunday August 3, 2008 at 1:30pm

SUNSET CONCERT
At our vineyard in Valle de Guadalupe, we present works from the classical repertoire, accompanied by fine cheeses and house wine. Where: Monte Xanic Winery, Valle de Guadalupe Sponsor: Vinícola / Monte Xanic Winery Cost: $75.00 Dlls When: Sunday August 3, 2008 at 6pm

A NIGHT AT CASA PIEDRA
Music and wine Where: Casa de Piedra Winery, Carretera Sponsor: Vinícola Casa de Piedra Cost: $120.00 Dlls When: Sunday August 3, 2008 at 7pm

SUNSET CONCERT
At our vineyard in Valle de Guadalupe, we present works from the classical repertoire, accompanied by fine cheeses and house wine. Where: Vinícola / Monte Xanic Winery, Valle de Guadalupe Sponsor: Vinícola / Monte Xanic Winery, Valle de Guadalupe Cost: $75.00 Dlls When: Monday August 4, 2008 at 6pm

WINE AND FOOD CASA DE PIEDRA-LAJA
Ingredient interpretation with Casa de Piedra vertical wine tasting Where: Restaurante Laja Sponsor: Vinícola Casa de Piedra, Restaurante Laja Cost: Invitation only When: Monday August 4, 2008 at 6pm

WINE, MUSIC AND SEMINAR
Wine tasting, acompanied with fine chesse and hors-d’oeuvres. Where: Club Campestre , Tijuana, B. C. Sponsor: Cofradía del Noble Vino de Tijuana Cost: $45.00 Dlls When: Tuesday August 5, 2008 at 7:30pm

LEGISLATIVE WINE MEETING
Where: Centro Cívico y Cultural Riviera del Pacifico. Sponsor: Canacintra, AVBC, Canirac, Sistema Producto Vid. Cost: No Cost When: Wednesday August 6, 2008 at 10am

MALAGON FAMILY CELEBRATION
Horse show, live music (latin jazz and mariachi),authentic Mexican/American, tastings of all our wines.
Where: Viñedos Malagón, Calle Sexta #75, Ejido Francisco Zarco. Sponsor: Viñedos Malagón Cost: $90.00 Dlls When: Wednesday August 6, 2008 at 6pm

COME TO OUR WORLD, WINE
In the natural Gardens a special musical concert of Jazz/Mariachi fusion, interpreted by the Las Vegas singing, Shadan. A gala dinner featuring El Olivo Restaurant “The Flavor of Colors,” accompanied by anniversary wineries. Where: Jardín Las Veredas, San Antonio de las Minas Sponsor: Restaurante el Olivo y Jardín Las Veredas. Cost: $100.00 Dlls VIP - $125.00 When: Thursaday August 7, 2008 at 6pm

SINERGY
Wine presentation, wine and food pairing, music and contemporary art Where: B&B La Villa del Valle, Valle de Guadalupe Sponsor: Sinergi-vt, Vinos y Terruños, Agrifolia, Viñedos Malagón, G. Salinas Vinos y Tintos del Norte 32. Cost: $110.00 Dlls When: Thursday August 7, 2008 at 6:30pm

JAZZ AT EL MAGOR
Jazz concert with house wines and mediterranean empanadas Where: Vinícola / Mogor Badan Winery Sponsor: Vinícola / Mogor Badan Winery Cost: $50.00 Dlls
When: Friday August 8, 2008 at 5:30pm

NIGHT OF THE TRIOS
Romantic music under the stars, at the sound of Baja Caliornia’s best trios. Will be having representatives from Tijuana and Ensenada at the rhythm of old melodies, we will serve our collection of four different wines accompanied by a four course dinner. Where: EMEVE Winery, camino a San José de la Zorra. Ej. El Porvenir. Sponsor: Vitivinícola EMEVE/EMEVE Winery Cost: $100.00 Dlls When: Friday August 8, 2008 at 6pm

THE SOUND OF VINISTERRA
Pairing of food, wine and music presented by the Culinary Art School from Tijuana and VINISTERRA winery Where: Vinisterra Winery, San Antonio de las Minas Sponsor: Vinisterra Winery, San Antonio de las Minas Cost: $85.00 Dlls When: Friday August 8, 2008 at 6:30pm

VIÑAS PIJOAN - MANZANILLA ENCOUNTER
Tasting of Pijoan Wines with tapas from Manzanilla Restaurant Where: Restaurante Manzanilla, Ensenada, B.C. Sponsor: Restaurante Manzanilla, Ensenada, B.C. Cost: $80.00 Dlls When: Friday August 8, 2008 at 8pm

WINEMAKERS VISITS II
The winemakers host visitors at their wineries to taste and describe their wines Where: Diversas Casas Vinicolas Sponsor: Asociacion de Vinicultores de Baja California Cost: $35.00 Dlls When: Saturday August 9, 2008 at 9am

TAUROVINOMAQUIA
Bullfighting fiesta with the star from the Tauromaquia, music, food and house wines Where: Rancho San Gabriel, San Antonio de las Minas Km. 95 Carr. Ensenada - Tecate Sponsor: Vinicola Bodegas Santo Tomas Cost: $100.00 Dlls When: Saturday August 9, 2008 at 12pm Contact: 011-52 (646) 174 08 29 Website: http://www.santo-tomas.com

II WINE EXHIBITION IN TECATE
Regional wines exhibition, cheese hors d’oeuvres and artisan bread from Tecate. Where: Restaurante Asao, Tecate, B. C. Sponsor: Asociación de Vinicultores de Baja California y Restaurante Asao. Cost: $35.00 Dlls When: Saturday August 9, 2008 at 1:30pm

RUSSIAN MEMORIES
Live music and wines Where: Rancho Toros Pintos, San Antonio de Las Minas Sponsor: Vinicola Bibayoff Cost: $55.00 Dlls When: Saturday August 9, 2008 at 4pm Contact: 011-52 (646) 176 10 08

RUSTIC VINALIA
Music, food and wines Where: Rancho Lafarga, San Antonio de Las Minas Sponsor: Vitivinicola Tres Valles y Vioedos Lafarga Cost: $50.00 Dlls When: Saturday August 9, 2008 at 5pm Contact: 011-52 (646) 178 80 52

PARALELO
Where: Vinícola Paralelo, Valle de Guadalupe Sponsor: Casa de Piedra Cost: $80.00 Dlls When: Saturday August 9, 2008 at 7pm

II WINE EXHIBITION IN TECATE
Italian soirée at Villa Montefiori, opera music in the vineyard, italian cousine (Macchiavello Restaurant, traditional italian food) wine tasting, music. Where: Vinícola Villa Montefiori, Toros Pintos, EJ. El Porvenir. Sponsor: Villa Montefiori Cost: $100.00 Dlls When: Sunday August 10, 2008 at 6:30pm

NOCHE DE COFRADOA EN ENSENADA
Wine and food pairing contest, the best restaurants and the best wineries Where: Puerto de Cruceros de Ensenada Sponsor: Cofradia del vino de Baja California Cost: $50.00 Dlls When: Tuesday August 12, 2008 at 6pm

11th WINE EXHIBITION IN MEXICALI
Tasting of selected wines acompanied with hors-doeuvres, music, art and wine topic lectures Where: Centro de Convenciones del Centro Estatal de las Artes de Baja California, Mexicali, B. C. Sponsor: Cofradia del vino de Baja California, Capitulo Mexicali Cost: $35.00 Dlls When: Wednesday August 13, 2008 at 6pm

CELEBRATION IN THE VALLEY
A traditional fair with games, music, food and wines from different wineries Where: Parque de Ejido El Porvenir Sponsor: Asociacion de Vinicultores de Baja California Cost: No cost When: Thursday August 14, 2008 at 4pm

TANGO AND WINE, PASSION AND ART
The glamour of tango and the passion of wines in a single place Where: Baron Balch’e Winery Sponsor: Baron Balch’e Winery Cost: $100.00 Dlls When: Friday August 15, 2008 at 6:30pm Contact: 011-52 (646) 680 27 04 Website: http://www.baronbalche.com

A DELIGHTFUL SUMMER EVENING IN TECATE
7 Seven gastronomic sensations, 7 Seven wineries; Seven course wine pairing dinner with seven different acclaimed wines (Adobe de Guadalupe, Monte Xanic, Roganto, Santo Tomas, Tanamá, Valmar, Vinisterra) Where: Restaurante Asao, Tecate, B. C. Sponsor: Restaurante Asao, Tecate, B. C. Cost: $85.00 Dlls When: Friday August 15, 2008 at 6:30pm

MEXICAN DELIGHTS IN VALMAR
Dinner, music and house wines Where: Cavas Valmar Winery Sponsor: Cavas Valmar Winery Cost: $50.00 Dlls When: Friday August 15, 2008 at 6:30pm Contact: 011-52 (646) 178 64 05 Website: http://www.cavasvalmar.com

A DELIGHTFUL SUMMER EVENING IN TECATE
7 Seven gastronomic sensations, 7 Seven wineries; Seven course wine pairing dinner with seven different acclaimed wines (Adobe de Guadalupe, Monte Xanic, Roganto, Santo Tomas, Tanamá, Valmar, Vinisterra) Where: Restaurante Asao, Tecate, B. C. Sponsor: Restaurante Asao, Tecate, B. C. Cost: $85.00 Dlls When: Friday August 15, 2008 at 6:30pm

WINEMAKERS VISITS III
The winemakers host visitors at their wineries to taste and describe their wines Where: Diversas Casas Vinicolas Sponsor: Asociacion de Vinicultores de Baja California Cost: $35.00 Dlls When: Saturday August 16, 2008 at 9am

SANTO TOMAS STREET FAIR
A street fair with numerous artistic expressions, games, music, food and house wines Where: Bodegas Santo Tomas, Ensenada Sponsor: Bodegas Santo Tomas Cost: No cost When: Saturday August 16, 2008 at 2pm Contact: 011-52 (646) 174 08 29 Website: http://www.santo-tomas.com

TANGO AND WINE, PASSION AND ART
The glamour of tango and the passion of wines in a single place Where: Baron Balch’e Winery Sponsor: Baron Balch’e Winery Cost: $100.00 Dlls When: Saturday August 16, 2008 at 6:30pm Contact: 011-52 (646) 680 27 04 Website: http://www.baronbalche.com

ROMANTIC SUNSET
From A to Z, a romantic music concert with Susana Zavaleta and Armando Manzanero, house wines and hors-doeuvres Where: Chateau Camou Winery, Valle de Guadalupe Sponsor: Chateau Camou Winery Cost: $165.00 Dlls When: Saturday August 16, 2008 at 7pm Contact: 011-52 (646) 177 22 21 Website: http://www.chateau-camou.com.mx

17th PAELLA COOKING CONTEST
A country contest for cooking rice paella style, sampling of paella and wines, dancing and music. Where: Rancho San Gabriel, San Antonio de las Minas Sponsor: Asociacion de Vinicultores de Baja California Cost: $35.00 Dlls When: Sunday August 17, 2008 at 12pm

Mexico's Wine Revolution

by Steven Dryden

The Spaniards planted the first vineyards in the Americas in Mexico in the sixteenth century. From these early vineyards of Mission grapes, Jesuit missionaries send vines and cuttings to Peru, Argentina, and Chile. By 1701, the first hybrid cuttings of Vitis vinifera (European stock) were planted in Baja California at Mission San Javier on Loredo Bay. Later in 1780, Franciscan Friar Junipero Serra sent cuttings and plants from the mission vineyards in San Diego to all the Alta California mission sites reaching Sonoma by 1830.

Bodegas de Santo Tomas was the first commercial Baja California winery operation established in 1888. The quality and quantity of their wine was limited due to the use of the Mission grape. The following year, James Concannon, winery and vineyard owner in Livermore, California introduced French varietal cuttings throughout Mexico, followed in 1910 with cuttings of Zinfandel and Petite Sirah. Then in 1932, Esteban Ferro and Dimitri Tchelistcheff imported Italian varieties to include Nebbiolo, Dolcetto and Barbara into Baja California. In addition, the Cetto family brought more Italian and French vines into the region and Camillo Magoni in 1970’s to include Cabernet Sauvignon Blanc, Merlot, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc and Chenin Blanc. After acquiring more vineyard properties in 1990, Don Luis Cetto added Syrah, Sangiovese, Petite Verdot, Malbec and Viognier to his portfolio of classic grape varietals. Mexico was now blessed with an abundance of superior grapes and well on the road to creating premium wine.
These early leaders, planners and visionaries developed a wide variety of diverse vineyards of classic European varietals in selected microclimates that has led to Baja California’s “silent revolution” in creating premium wine. Ninety percent of all Mexican wine grapes are grown and produced in five distinct areas: Valle de Guadalupe, Valle de Santo Tomas, Valle de San Vicente Valle de las Palmas, and Ojos Negros. In addition, the State of Sonora has two important wine growing regions located in Hermosillo and Caborca where vineyards of Barbera, Dulce, Cardinal, Ruby Cabernet and Palomino provide juice for a handful of small boutique wineries. Further south in Coahuila, Durango, Zacatecas, Aguascalientes and Queretaro grapes are grown and wine is produced.

About the time (1980’s) many of the classic European vines were reaching maturity with the production of premium fruit, the real transformation of the Mexican wine industry began. L.A. Cetto, Bodega de Santo Tomas and Pedro Domecq wineries began accumulating international awards with wine made from those mature grapes found at various sites throughout the region. Adding to the excitement was the arrival of several small boutique wineries with a focus on creating limited production-premium wine, using state-of-the-art technology, under the direction of professionally trained enologists. Cavas Valmar (1983) was the first artisan winery in Ensenada, followed by Monte Xanic winery as the first boutique facility on the scene at Guadalupe Valley in 1988. The artisan and boutique winery movement brought in self-taught and trained enologists from Mexico City, France, Germany, Switzerland, Argentina, Chile, and other regions of Mexico.

Today, there are over thirty licensed wineries in Mexico and as many “unofficial” winery operations located throughout the country. In addition, a new artisan movement is attracting hundreds of aspiring handcrafted winemakers each year. Viticulture, viniculture and enology classes are being offered in Ensenada at the UBC and in Valle de Guadalupe, near El Porvenir, a small winemaking and artisan olive oil school is training many locals and “moonlighting” professionals.

It’s an exciting time for Mexico’s emerging wine culture. For example, at Guateque 2008, an exclusive wine event focusing on new artisan wines and winemakers, over twenty-five participants proudly displayed and shared samples of their first and second year wine releases to an enthusiastic group of over three hundred international wine lovers. And, with each year, the wine just keeps getting better and better!

Most of the wineries, wine tasting rooms, restaurants and wine country lodging facilities are centered in Valle de Guadalupe near Ensenada. This premier wine country is blessed with a Mediterranean climate, located ten to twenty-five miles from the Pacific Ocean, along the Tecate - Ensenada Highway 3. About fifteen of the twenty wineries are open on the weekends and about half of those during the week.

The most “user friendly” wineries in order as you drive from Ensenada along Highway 3 are: Vinisterra, Casa Vieja, Viña de Liceaga, Three Women, Viños Sueños, Viños Fuentes, Monte Xanic, Viños Bibayoff, Pedro Domecq, L.A. Cetto and Do–a Lupe. Those wineries requiring advance reservations are Casa de Piedra, Adobe Guadalupe Vineyards and Pau Pijoan.
Recent additions to the Guadalupe Valley wine country are two new hotels: Hacienda Guadalupe (upscale) and (budget) Hotel Plaza Fatima. Finally, gourmet coffee located in a “world class” art gallery can be enjoyed at Jardin Las Veredas, near Vinisterra winery. Several wineries are located in the town of Ensenada to include Cavas Valmar, Roganto, Bodegas de Santo Tomas and the artisan wines of Jose Louis Durand. Of course, you might know that several of Baja California’s top gourmet restaurants can be found in that port city.

Mexico’s wine industry and wine culture is “booming.” Furthermore, Ensenada is becoming the “gourmet food and wine capital” of Mexico with close proximity to the wine region, abundant fresh seafood, organic produce, gourmet cheese and artisan olive oil. Maybe, it’s time to explore some “bottled treasures of delight” from Mexico and discover our “silent revolution” in creating premium wine. Our wine region awaits your exploration and we’re here with our famous Baja California hospitality, eager to share our amazing wine culture with you, your family and friends. Viva Mexico!

Steve Dryden is a wine and food writer living in Valle de Guadalupe where he guides private wine tours for individuals, couples and small groups. He can be reached at sbdryden@hotmail.com

Letters to the Editor

We have lived in Baja for nearly 5 years now. Just picked up our first copy of your excellent publication, very interesting, informative and well organized. Such an improvement over the rag [name omitted] that us ex-patriots had here before. It’s great not having to read trash about the place we have chosen to live and call home. Best of luck. - Dottie Leeper

Thank you very much. We will continue to do our best.

My wife has Multiple Scleroses (MS) and I was just wondering if there is some kind of fund raiser for the MS Society in Mexico, because I want my wife to live a happy and long life. I also want to know if you can do research on Multiple Scleroses and put an article. - R. P. Jones.

We will looked into it and be sure to include it in our Health and Wellness edition. We would like to also encourage our readers to send us any information they may have on MS in Mexico to
editor@mexicoliving.info.

We love Baja and bought a home. No matter how good your Cruz Roja or General Hospital when minutes count, the ambulance is too slow and the technicians don’t understand English. My sister broke her ankle and it took 40 minutes for the ambulance to come from Rosarito and 40 minutes back again to Cruz Roja, then a 40 minute trip to the border to be transferred. The stress and pain was too much for her heart and she had a heart attack. She was barely breathing when she reached a hospital in SD. Because of this ongoing situation we had to leave our home. I feel responsible to tell people that the medical service, especially ambulance is very bad. - J. Pratt

I am sorry to hear about your sister, I hope she has recovered okay. I don’t know how recently this happened, but Rosarito now has a medical assistance program (www.serenaseniorcare.com) with 24-hour bilingual support and the area just received additional ambulances by the government in March.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

The Paipai Indians Art


by Robin Waters

The Paipai Indians - also known as Akwa’ala - occupied the northern Sierras in the interior of the northern Baja California Peninsula. Their original territory included the lower Colorado River valley in the present day municipios of Enseñada and Mexicali, as well as adjacent areas in western Arizona, southern California and northwestern Sonora.

The Paipai first encountered Europeans when Sebastián Vizcaíno’s expedition mapped the northwest coast of Baja California in 1602. Later, in 1780, the Dominican mission of San Vicente was founded near the coast in Paipai territory. It became a key center for the Spanish administration and military control of the region. In 1797 San Vicente was supplemented by an inland mission at Santa Catarina, near the boundary between the Paipai and Kumeyaay territories. The main modern Paipai settlement is at Santa Catarina, a community they share with Kumeyaay and Kiliwa residents. Santa Catarina is located approximately 50 miles east of Enseñada, about a three-hour drive from San Diego.

These indigenous people have retained much of their traditional knowledge; and many of them provide for their families, as they have for thousands of years, by harvesting from their land natural resources such as yucca, pine nuts, honey and firewood, and by raising livestock and crops. Some of the Paipai Kumiai people earn their living by making traditional arts and crafts to sell, such as pottery, bows and arrows, and by weaving willow, pine and juncus baskets, including agave fiber carrying nets. Some of the men also work in Guadalupe Valley as cowboys or farmers, as well as on their own ranches.

Daria Mariscal lives in the Paipai community of Santa Catarina, Baja California, Mexico, and is an artisan in the traditional style of pit fired pottery. That is also where Daria quarries her own clay for each of her fired pots. She often teaches pottery making classes and has taught on the Viejas and Barona Indian Reservations in San Diego County; and hopes to introduce her workshops in San Felipe.

Daria also weaves baskets with juncos, palm and piñon pine needles. The sales of her pottery and baskets go toward the construction of a planned family museum and store in her community, to help the tribe.

Santa Catarina Paipai Kumeyaay Indian traditional arts and crafts also can be purchased at the Shumup Ko Hup “Dream Come True” Indian store. You can find Daria’s listing in the Artists’ Directory. The store is owned and operated by San Diego Kumeyaay Indian families, who currently are converting the business to online sales only at www.howka.com, telephone 619.573.991.

This California Indigenous artist’s authentic work is available in San Felipe to those who call Wendy Doman at 686-114-4976 or e-mail soleilsoul@gmail.com.

Kayak Rocky Point

After seven years of traveling Mexico, Roland and Tammy Mondragon decided Puerto Peñasco would be their new home and the home to Kayak Rocky Point, their new kayaking business. That was a year ago last month.

If you want to enjoy the waters of Puerto Peñasco in a personal way, providing memories and pictures to last a lifetime, Kayak Rocky Point offers every imaginable kayak opportunity from hourly through weekly rentals, group discounts, delivery for non-hourly rentals, guided kayak tours for snorkeling, sightseeing & swimming. “Our specialty tour is the Estero Morua, a large estuary just north of Las Conchas. It’s here we can ride the tide in and back out.”

Try kayak fishing or diving in the Hobie Outback SUV with the Mirage Pedal Drive system. It is medium size and weight with the pedal drive and has two water proof storage areas large enough for fishing poles and a exterior cargo area that is made to hold dive tanks. Just like an SUV!
They also provide snorkeling, skim boards & fishing equipment for sale or rent. Boat charters for sunset tours, coastal cruises, parasailing & bird island as well as all levels or distances of fishing or diving.

If you get to Puerto Peñasco, look up Roland and Tammy and tell them you want to see their SUV. Follow the main road BENITO JUAREZ to the OLD PORT/FISH MARKET AREA, they’re the entrance in the yellow building at the fork in the road.

For more information
or to place a rental by phone;
USA toll free: 866-687-2510
Cell phone: (011-52) 638-103-2038
Or e-mail us at kayakrockypoint@aol.com!

Free Diving in Rocky Point


By Rita Pizarro

Carlo Bonacci, is a Geriatric Neuropsychologist that spends much of his time with the elderly with mental problems and memory disorders and the other time holding his breath.

“Diving into the open blue water, feel yourself getting deeper and deeper, feeling the pressure of the water heavier and heavier on you, you are floating there and when you stop swimming and you continue to sink, but at a certain point you reach negative buoyancy which is freedom, like flying underwater.”

The proximity of Puerto Peñasco to Arizona and its less crowded waters, along with the local ambiance and character makes the area a favorite of Carlo.

Free Diving Areas:
  • “The Reef” just before Cholla Bay in Sandy Beach.
  • Don’s Pond, a little preserve with a lot of marine life.
  • Bird Island (boat needed, many charters available; see Kayak Rocky Point). Great structures and you can dive anywhere from 2 feet to 80 feet and see all kinds of life.
Carlo’s preferred fish is Sardinera, a good size grouper, or the abundant triggerfish. “We only fish for what were going to eat that day, we cook it ourselves or once in a while, we take it to a restaurant and they cook it for us.”

As a spear fishermen, you are intimately immersed in the environment and have an impact, the goal of free diving is to have the least amount possible.

• Don’t fish for Gulf Grouper in May when they’re spawning.
• Know your fish because many are endangered species with rapidly dwindling populations.
• It’s against the law in Mexico to spear fish with scuba gear.

Best to dive on the low tide swing, not on full or new moon, best time is half moon. “I like diving on incoming tide more than outgoing tide, on flat tides an hour before or after high tide or the hour before or after low tide.”
If you’re interested in getting into the sport of free diving, always understand the local conditions and take someone with you, and be aware of the tides and currents. The most important things is to get in the water and follow your curiosity.

Rita Pizarro is a Local Massage Therapist and Freelance Writer, special thanks to Tom Thomas, Home Inspector for the picture and edition, we can both be reached at 602 748 4134 or ritapizarro@gmail.com,

Fly-In Medical Aid for Baja

Photos and words by Robin Waters

The Flying Samaritans are a volunteer organization which operates free medical clinics in Baja California, Mexico. Doctors, dentists, nurses, translators, pilots and support personnel fly to clinics in private aircraft. Through a cooperative agreement with the University of Baja California, the teams are sanctioned as Invited Teachers. Flying Samaritans is organized in 10 Chapters, with currently over 1500 members, and serves 19 clinics.

In Northwest Mexico, the Tucson, Arizona Chapter works in El Rosario. The Modesto-Central Valley Chapter goes to San Felipe. The Palomar-Bonsall Chapter works in Rosarito Beach and has an Eye Clinic in Tecate. The San Diego Chapter flies into Valle de Trinidad, to name just a few chapters in the Northwest area.

The history of the Flying Samaritans began on November 16, 1961. San Diego County was socked in by a dust storm prompted by a severe drought. A magazine owner took off from La Paz, Baja California, Mexico in a twin-engine Beechcraft piloted by Aileen Saunders. In those days, travel by small plane in Baja was challenging mainly because of deceptively soft terrain that often precluded any take off after a forced landing, the absence of any radio-equipped airports below Tijuana and the lack of lighting at most landing strips.

Although the weather was good at La Paz, when they landed about three hours later in Bahia de Los Angeles, they were told there was a rumor of strong winds in the greater Los Angeles area. Forty-five minutes after taking off again, they encountered gusty sandstorms that blocked out Tijuana. Failing to pick up Tijuana or San Diego, Aileen decided to try for a landing in Ensenada. However, about three minutes before landing, the weather closed in completely and they lost sight of the ground as well as the 5,000 to 7,000 foot peaks in the area. They were finally able to climb over the storm. At this point, low on fuel, Aileen knew there were few landing options. She chose a clearing on the mesa top of a mountain outside the village of El Rosario, where they landed safely.

The plane had been heard circling and a villager drove up to retrieve them. He took them to Anita Espinosa’s local general store. Anita was half Pima Indian and half Italian and had been educated in a San Diego Mission school.

Mama Espinosa, as she was known to many, began to describe the devastation from the drought and the pitiless existence of the local people. She said she would be grateful for any clothing contributions, especially for the children. Not only were the people of the village impoverished; but many were unwell.

The next day, safely back in San Diego, Aileen and her friends began collecting donations for a return relief flight to Baja. On the Saturday before Christmas of that year, an armada of single-engine planes departed for Baja, every one loaded with toys, food, clothing and good will. Among the volunteers was a doctor. Once in El Rosario he was mobbed by needy people, and so was born the Flying Samaritans.

The vision of that first pilot, Aileen Saunders Mellott, and her untiring efforts to enlist volunteers, along with her valuable contacts with both U.S. and Mexican officials, facilitated the transport of equipment and supplies necessary to establish the original clinic at El Rosario and, later, the second at Colonet.

If you would like to become a member, a sponsor or donate to this wonderful group, you will find further information at: www.flyingsamaritans.net/international
or contact Walter J. Shimon MD 209-966-9596 or email: wjs41@aol.com.

Cruz Roja Mexicana to the Rescue

by Lisa Shannon,

SAN FELIPE CRUZ ROJA - Cruz Roja Mexicana, San Felipe is the only organization to provide Emergency Medical Services, answering 70 calls per month, on average. Ambulance response is the main assistance provided, 24 hours per day, 365 days per year.

On February 25th, 2008, in a formal ceremony with Mexico’s president, Mr. Felipe Calderón, San Felipe received eight ambulances for Baja California. A local dedication ceremony was held on March 14. The new equipment, worth US $2,800, was donated by the San Felipe Rotary Club. The equipment includes a new monitor-defibrillator, an oximeter, a complete laryngoscope set and other essential rescue items, including equipment for an Advanced Life Support Unit with general supplies as part of the ambulance’s supplies.

Currently, Cruz Roja is working on various projects under the leadership of Nefi Ramírez García, who started with Cruz Roja in September 1985. “I started at the Mexico City earthquake as a first time volunteer with Rescate de Michoacán,” he remembers, “but in 1990, I moved to serve as a Red Cross volunteer at Morelia Michoacán. This year I will celebrate 18 years serving in Cruz Roja Mexicana.” In April 2007, Mr. Garcia was invited to serve as the General Administrator or General Director of the local chapter (delegación).

Financial support comes from the “Monthly Donor Program,” a personal commitment to donate 100 pesos monthly. The program’s goal is 500 donors, or 50,000 pesos per month. This funds the ambulance crews, local radio dispatchers and full-time, professionally certified EMS personnel. An Advanced Cardiac Life Support (ACLS) certification project is underway to train five local EMTs for ACLS certification.

Mr. Garcia says that the community can help Cruz Roja in one major way: prevention. “We like to serve, but we do not desire accidents. If people respect transit laws, use safety belts, wear a helmet on motorcycles and minimize risks at home, we will receive few emergency calls.”
Cruz Roja provides community training for CPR, Disaster Preparedness and First Aid. The organization’s funding depends upon individual and personal donations, which are necessary to support Cruz Roja because it is a socially-based organization and receives no governmental funding. Its operational costs are 110,000-120,000 pesos per month.

Contacting Cruz Roja is simple: for emergency calls, dial 066 from any cellphone or landline. Bilingual staff in Mexicali will take the address and report. The local telephone number (for emergencies and non-emergencies) is 686-577-1544. For non-emergencies, administration/public office hours are 9M to 9PM Monday-Saturday. Feel free to visit the administrative office and ask to see the accountability books, records, statistics and bank accounts; these belong to the community and are open to anyone wishing to see them to learn what Cruz Roja does with every peso it receives.

Cruz Roja thanks San Felipe for supporting this essential part of the community, and Rotary Club for donating the emergency equipment. This community deserves the most professional emergency response possible. Cruz Roja is looking to be such a provider, but it will take time, money and lots of help.

Donations can be made in person at the Cruz Roja medical office or by deposit into the CRUZ ROJA account. All checks should be made payable to CRUZ ROJA MEXICANA DELEGACIÓN SAN FELIPE, I.A.P. or CRUZ ROJA MEXICANA, BBVA BANCOMER, Cuenta No. 0156279244 CRUZ ROJA MEXICANA DELEGACIÓN SAN FELIPE I.A.P. Supplies, medical and EMS equipment can be donated at the medical or administrative office. More ambulance equipment is still needed: C-collars, backboards, first aid supplies, glucometers, newer defibrillators and vital sign monitors.
Emergency: 066 / San Felipe: 686-577-1544

Cruz Roja (Red Cross) to the Rescue

by Lisa Shannon,

SAN FELIPE CRUZ ROJA - Cruz Roja Mexicana, San Felipe is the only organization to provide Emergency Medical Services, answering 70 calls per month, on average. Ambulance response is the main assistance provided, 24 hours per day, 365 days per year.

On February 25th, 2008, in a formal ceremony with Mexico’s president, Mr. Felipe Calderón, San Felipe received eight ambulances for Baja California. A local dedication ceremony was held on March 14. The new equipment, worth US $2,800, was donated by the San Felipe Rotary Club. The equipment includes a new monitor-defibrillator, an oximeter, a complete laryngoscope set and other essential rescue items, including equipment for an Advanced Life Support Unit with general supplies as part of the ambulance’s supplies.

Currently, Cruz Roja is working on various projects under the leadership of Nefi Ramírez García, who started with Cruz Roja in September 1985. “I started at the Mexico City earthquake as a first time volunteer with Rescate de Michoacán,” he remembers, “but in 1990, I moved to serve as a Red Cross volunteer at Morelia Michoacán. This year I will celebrate 18 years serving in Cruz Roja Mexicana.” In April 2007, Mr. Garcia was invited to serve as the General Administrator or General Director of the local chapter (delegación).

Financial support comes from the “Monthly Donor Program,” a personal commitment to donate 100 pesos monthly. The program’s goal is 500 donors, or 50,000 pesos per month. This funds the ambulance crews, local radio dispatchers and full-time, professionally certified EMS personnel. An Advanced Cardiac Life Support (ACLS) certification project is underway to train five local EMTs for ACLS certification.

Mr. Garcia says that the community can help Cruz Roja in one major way: prevention. “We like to serve, but we do not desire accidents. If people respect transit laws, use safety belts, wear a helmet on motorcycles and minimize risks at home, we will receive few emergency calls.”
Cruz Roja provides community training for CPR, Disaster Preparedness and First Aid. The organization’s funding depends upon individual and personal donations, which are necessary to support Cruz Roja because it is a socially-based organization and receives no governmental funding. Its operational costs are 110,000-120,000 pesos per month.

Contacting Cruz Roja is simple: for emergency calls, dial 066 from any cellphone or landline. Bilingual staff in Mexicali will take the address and report. The local telephone number (for emergencies and non-emergencies) is 686-577-1544. For non-emergencies, administration/public office hours are 9M to 9PM Monday-Saturday. Feel free to visit the administrative office and ask to see the accountability books, records, statistics and bank accounts; these belong to the community and are open to anyone wishing to see them to learn what Cruz Roja does with every peso it receives.

Cruz Roja thanks San Felipe for supporting this essential part of the community, and Rotary Club for donating the emergency equipment. This community deserves the most professional emergency response possible. Cruz Roja is looking to be such a provider, but it will take time, money and lots of help.

Donations can be made in person at the Cruz Roja medical office or by deposit into the CRUZ ROJA account. All checks should be made payable to CRUZ ROJA MEXICANA DELEGACIÓN SAN FELIPE, I.A.P. or CRUZ ROJA MEXICANA, BBVA BANCOMER, Cuenta No. 0156279244 CRUZ ROJA MEXICANA DELEGACIÓN SAN FELIPE I.A.P. Supplies, medical and EMS equipment can be donated at the medical or administrative office. More ambulance equipment is still needed: C-collars, backboards, first aid supplies, glucometers, newer defibrillators and vital sign monitors.
Emergency: 066 / San Felipe: 686-577-1544