Spatial Segregation in a Tourist City: The Case of Puerto Vallarta, Mexico

Although socio-spatial differentiation is a conspicuous characteristic of tourist cities, socio-spatial segregation has received little attention in the literature. To fill this gap, this exploratory article analyses socio-spatial segregation in Puerto-Vallarta, Mexico. Puerto-Vallarta was selected as a representative case study of cities with rapid growth due to its noticeable 1990-2005 socioeconomic development. What was once a small Mexican city with some tourists it has become a metropolitan area economically dependent upon tourism. Along with this overall change has come the differential development of infrastructure, coupled with internal population movements that have segregated facilities and activities as never before. Five indices analyze spatial segregation. The statistical results confirm the existence of an important degree of segregation in the city.