Paraiso del Mar Re-Energized

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By Susan Fogel

“We didn’t come down here to start building a short-term project and go home,” Hatfield recalls. “We were emotionally involved. We wanted to make it a place to be proud of and a place to live fulltime with our families. We put real heart and soul into the community.”

Those are the words of Ron Hatfield, the developer of Villas del Mar in Los Cabos. These very same words can be attributed to his vison for re-energizing Paraiso del Mar (PDM). In September 2017, recognizing an opportunity and needing something to keep his juices flowing, Hatfield came to terms with the bank and has invested in bringing the Fantasy back to Fantasy Island. Hatfield has many successful exclusive development successes under his belt.

Make no mistake, in the years after the painful financial crisis, the homeowners themselves have kept PDM alive and thriving. In fact, 39 families pitched in $300 per month to maintain their biggest and most valuable asset, the golf course. Some of those owners do not even play golf. But they recognized the value of the course. Homeowner’s Associations in La Paz can learn a lot from the diligence of these homeowners.

Project Manager, Augustin Olachea says “… We have lifted the cloud of the foreclosure. We are moving forward with a plan…” The Baja Citizen covered the past problems and applauded the courage of the homeowners to take charge under terrible circumstances.

Luis Cano one of the original developers of PDM is still on board. Olachea says that Hatfield and Cano are yin and yang. A good working partnership.

If you are new to town, PDM, also known as Fantasy Island, is the development you see across the water from the malecon.

Sitting in the gray drizzle at Vista Coral, Olachea and I reminisced about the early days of PDM. We talked about the wonderful attitude adjustment of the boat ride over.

“It is eight minutes of magic,” said Olachea. “Not only is it relaxing, and beautiful, I always meet new people that are either living there or vacationing there.” I hear their stories. I recommend places to go. It is truly magical.” And he is right. I always feel blessed that I live in La Paz and that I have friends I can see when I take a little electric surrey boat across the harbor to visit.

So, what are the plans? Well fairly big ones. But here is what is prioritized and already underway:

  • Upgrades to the arrival point
  • New landscaping and lighting around the resort
  • Provisioning of bicycles for shared use
  • Enhanced maintenance crew at the golf course
  • New pickle ball courts and upgraded tennis court surface
  • Clean up and repair of the marina slips

The golf course and pro shop are key to the financial health of PDM. Hatfield sits on the board of the homeowner’s committee charged with running and maintain the golf course. “It would be unfair for the developer to takeover after all of the work these people have done. He is here to help and restructure,” stresses Olachea.

The golf course plans will include a second story restaurant that can also be a special event venue. The pro shop will be expanded, including bag storage.

For 2018, local La Paz golfers will be offered a special paceño rate and daily packages. “We acknowledge that we must be part of the surrounding community,” stated Olachea.

Coming up March 22-25 is a two-day invitational golf tournament and the prize is the Cortez Cup. This is fashioned much like the Ryder Cup. Only 54 players can be accommodated. For information, contact

So that is a lot of stuff! But there’s more! Between the two condo horseshoes will be a welcome center and beach access for vacationers and paceño alike. This will encompass a reception center, restaurant, bar, lounge, and coffee shop. This closes at 10:00 p.m., so there will be no noise to drown out the sounds of the waves. This is key for vacationers. Here is where they can learn where to go and what to do, I mean in case Augustin Olachea is not on the boat!

The desalination and water plants will be run by solar energy.

The residents on PDM have been doing a great job of recycling, cleaning the beaches, and protecting turtles. “De-sal” will only add to the greenness of this community.

Wait! Wait! There is more! A new arrival and departure dock at Vista Coral will be functioning. And Hatfield is looking for a small parcel for residents to keep their cars complete with valet service.

Does this sound too fantastic to believe? Well, in view of the history of PDM, it may. But Hatfield has an exemplary track record as a developer. There is no huge debt service for him to pay. He is investing wisely and, so far, is living up to his promises.

Paraiso del Mar is beautiful. It is peaceful. La Paz and the PDM residents deserve to see this wonderful development re-energized while protecting the environment. Have you got some time? Do you have a friend that lives on Fantasy Island? Call them up, tell them you are bringing another friend and that you want to meet them for lunch at the condo bar.

Allow yourself to soak in those eight minutes of magic on the ride across the bay of La Paz.

Susan Fogel is a retired real estate agent. She spends her days writing, creating beautiful garments, and collecting shells.

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