Resort accused of trying to keep access to guests only
Surfersvillage Global Surf News, 10 June, 2014 - Last April month, Casa de Mar Hotel closed the public beach access road to the El Sunzal surf spot. Sunzal is known for it's great surf. The community of Sunzal includes a handful of small hostels that provide budget accommodations for travelers. The hostels, as well as local fisherman, oyster divers, surfers, and the community as a whole use the public beach access.
Local Jorge Dominguez said the purpose is to monopolize the surf tourism in the area and that a couple hundred families also rely on access to this stretch of beach for fishing and other sustenance activities.
It's also reported that the resort built a seawall close to the high tide line by extracting rocks from the surf line with a bulldozer. There are also accusations of hotel negligence regarding septic tank systems and garbage. With the beginning of the rainy season in El Salvador the adjacent lot to Casa de Mar has filled with stagnant water, inviting mosquitos.
According to the Indiegogo fundraising page on the subject (which has raised $1700 as of this writing): “For years, Hotel Casa De Mar has been trying to cut off the only public beach access to Playa Sunzal. Now with a shady deal made between the Alcalde (Mayor) of the municipality and the hotel, they have closed it. The owner of the hotel is not interested in the community as a whole and is dead set on expanding his hotel. We have proof that this closure is illegal activity, the problem is getting the authorities to uphold the law.”
The fundraising group is comprised of a group of locals and hostel owners.