Local Developer In Trouble

Can’t pay the bills, can’t move forward
BY: BILL DING

Portus Group has been around Cabo for many years. They started here by building a really good product, Ventanas individual free standing homes behind and above Costco. Their first phase sold well, and was maintained well. There was a clubhouse, community pool, and restaurant. First phase buyers were happy.

But Portus seems to have lost their way. The subsequent phases at Ventanas have been plagued with substandard workmanship and they aren’t even keeping the first phase maintained any more. The restaurant is shuttered and looking forlorn. This cannot help property values.

Portus appears to be living off the down payments they receive, as one buyer waited so long for their house to be built they finally asked for their money back. They were told they couldn’t get it for nine months, and if they didn’t sign an agreement to that effect, they would never get their money. Now that’s desperately needing cash.

 But it gets worse. One of their employees was threatened with bodily harm by a vendor who was owed a large amount of money. The employee quit and fled. Some of these smaller vendors, some construction companies especially, can’t stay in business if they aren’t paid, and they get testy. But they’ve found they can’t get blood from a stone, so what’s the point in beating up an employee who can’t make the money materialize?

Still, Portus plows ahead with new projects, like the condominiums called Soleado in Cerritos, selling units while they’ve barely broken ground. At the same time residential projects they own, like Cabo del Mar Village behind the Cabo San Lucas Country Club, languish uncompleted for years. If the multi-story Soleado condo building in Cerritos suffers the same fate, if they run out of down payments to operate on, it is going to be an eyesore on an otherwise nice beach. It will also impact all the surrounding legitimate businesses.

And therein lies the problem: When one big developer goes south, it creates a ripple effect in the entire community and everyone suffers. It hurts the credibility of all developments, makes people afraid to put money down, and it shows that the Mexican judicial system is useless. There is no legal recourse here.

Portus Group owns and is in various stages of development, (or not) of the following properties. Careful when advancing them money on a project.

Ventanas,

Soleado Cerritos condominiums

Cabo del Mar Village

Colegio del Mar school

Camino del Mar Townhouses and Homes.