Private Yacht Vacations
Mexico’s Sea of Cortez, Cellar & Galley
Odile, a French name, translates as wealthy and fortunate. Mother Nature, perhaps a Spanish-speaker, didn’t get that memo. When Hurricane Odile slammed into Mexico’s Baja California peninsula this past September, she was the strongest storm ever on record there. The 125-mph winds leveled homes. Palm trees and power lines snapped like Tinkertoys. Resorts in Cabo San Lucas and La Paz became mass-evacuation sites. The damage totaled more than $900 million: expensive and unfortunate, to say the least.
Clean-up efforts began immediately in the coastal areas, which, in addition to being jammed with resorts, have more recently become hubs for western Mexico’s growing number of luxury charter yachts. Personal cruising has long been popular inside the peninsula, in the Sea of Cortez, but it’s only during the past half-dozen years that larger yachts have begun to make the region a winter alternative to the Caribbean.
Day-charter boats often base out of Cabo San Lucas, and La Paz is generally the starting and ending point for crewed charters into the Sea of Cortez. The natural landscape of La Paz helped prevent even more serious Odile damage at its marinas, where most repairs were