Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Daniel Chavez Moran Award Seeking Literature Ideas from Youths

Founder of Grupo Vidanta and Vidanta Foundation creates second award to harness ideas from youths to combat poverty in Latin America

The Daniel Chavez Moran Award launched today with its latest category in the area of Literature. The award welcomes submissions from youths who live in the United States aged twelve to eighteen to submit their best ideas on how to combat the serious problem of poverty in Latin America through the use of essays, short stories, testimonials and poetry.

Full contest details, terms and conditions as well as an application form can be found at

A panel of judges will select the winning applicants that demonstrate outstanding use of literary devices and language to raise awareness for poverty in Latin America. Prizes awarded are as follows:

Grand Prize - $1,000, Certificate of Award

Runner Up - $500, Certificate of Runner Up

Third Place through Fifth Place - $100, Certificate of Participation

Besides the monetary prizes, winners also will be featured in promotional and press outreach. The Award is a great way to get today’s youths thinking outside the box on how to bring attention to issues affecting Latin American communities.

Mr. Daniel Chavez Moran is the founder of Grupo Vidanta, one of the largest developers of luxury resorts, golf courses and real estate in Mexico and repeat winner of Best Places to Work in Mexico. He also founded Vidanta Foundation, a prominent non-profit institution whose primary aim is the reduction of poverty in Latin America through the promotion of economic development, social sciences and culture.

About the Daniel Chávez Morán Award

The Daniel Chávez Morán Award focuses on youths between the ages of twelve and eighteen. The Award seeks to harness ideas from America's best and brightest youths. The problems of poverty continue to plague many nations in Latin America. The Award welcomes innovative ideas and forward thinking for new ways to tackle the problem of poverty.

Daniel Chávez Morán, now retired from the development of hotels and resorts, founded Grupo Vidanta in 1974 after graduating from The University of Guadalajara with a degree in Civil Engineering. He retired in 2005 to found Fundación Vidanta (originally named Fundación Grupo Mayan) and focus on philanthropy. Mr. Chávez Morán is also the founder of Fundación Delia Morán A.C., which is focused on helping children grow up in a healthy environment. While no longer active in Grupo Vidanta itself, Mr. Chávez Morán's efforts in the non-profit sector help promote the name of the companies he originally founded.

Learn more at

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

The Grand Mayan at Riviera Maya Hosts the Third Meeting of the Advisory Board of United Nations Development Program

The Grand Mayan at Riviera Maya Hosts the Third Meeting of the Advisory Board of United Nations Development Program

The debate on the Regional Human Development Report 2013, " Public Safety: The Key to Human Development in Latin America," took place on August 30-31 at the Grand Mayan Riviera Maya.

Grupo Vidanta, through the non-profit organization the Vidanta Foundation, co-organized and co-sponsored the event in conjunction with the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) and the government of Spain. This momentous event throughout Latin America and the Caribbean was attended by former ministers, former presidents and the highest authorities on security.

The event discussed measures to reduce the problem of violence and citizen insecurity, ensuring the participation of the three levels of government in the Latin American and Caribbean countries, in partnership with civil society, academia and international cooperation.
Heraldo Muñoz, UN Under-Secretary General and Regional Director for Latin America and the Caribbean, UNDP, was responsible for introducing the discussion on the safety report.

Luis Alberto Moreno, President of the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) addressed the vulnerabilities of the region on the issue of security and violence.

The map of the challenge faced by countries in Latin America and the Caribbean, from the academic point of view, will be addressed by Jorge Dominguez, President of the Harvard Academy for International Studies.

Regarding the subjects of most interest to the region, Alicia Barcena, Executive Secretary of ECLAC, detailed the impacts of uncertainty, an issue that is considered the primary concern of the population of Mexico and the rest of Latin America and the Caribbean.

Oscar Naranjo, former General of the National Police of Colombia and Robert Russell, Chairman of the Vidanta Foundation, presented the report's recommendations on how to address the problems of violence and crime in the short, medium and long term, in favor of society.

The Third Meeting of the Advisory Board was attended by personalities including: Former President of the Republic of Guatemala, Jose Miguel Insulza, Secretary General of the Organization of American States (OAS), Enrique Iglesias, Secretary General (SEGIB), Juan Ramon de la Fuente, President of the International Association of Universities and Daniel Chavez Moran, Founder of the Vidanta Foundation.

A special guest of the event was Roberto Borge, Governor of the State of Quintana Roo.

“Grupo Vidanta was honored to be the venue in which to discuss issues of global concern, as we believe that for entrepreneurs, it is a must to be key players in the solution and discussion of current issues that concerns us all,” said Eric DuBaele, Director of Hotel Operations for Grupo Vidanta.

Grupo Vidanta Announces Winners for Philanthropic Initiatives to Combat Poverty and Inequality in Latin America

Vidanta Foundation Award 2013 Awarded to Top Organizations throughout Latin America

Three prizes were awarded out of hundreds of entries along with one lifetime achievement award

The ceremony for the Vidanta Foundation Awards 2013 was held this past December 4th at the Santiago National Museum of Fine Arts. On this occasion there were two award categories: “Lifetime Achievement Award” and “Contributions to reduction of poverty and inequality in Latin America and the Caribbean Award”.

The Award was created in 2009, following an initiative of cooperation between the Organization of American States (OAS), the Iberoamerican Secretary General (SEGIB) and the Vidanta Foundation, with an annual total contribution of USD $225,000, which is donated by the Foundation in its entirety. The award has the ultimate goal of recognizing and supporting outstanding work carried forward in Latin American and The Caribbean to reduce poverty, inequality and fight discrimination. Furthermore, it seeks to promote humanitarian and solidarity values amongst the general population and to encourage philanthropy and corporate social responsibility.

The jury of the Vidanta Foundation Award 2013 consisted of Carmelo Angulo (Spain), Rebeca Grynspan (Costa Rica), Nora Lustig (Mexico), Jose Luis Machinea (Argentina), Luis Maira (Chile), Billie Miller (Barbados) and Julio Maria Sanguinetti (Uruguay).

According to the jury’s decision, “there were 75 organizations competing for this award. This is a very relevant testimony to the principles of social solidarity that inspire people in Latin American societies, projected specifically in benefit of millions of people in need. Within this group, several of those projects were able to show substantial and comparable values for this award. After careful consideration, the Jury opted to award the Charity Organization “Hogar de Cristo” from Chile. To achieve this result, the Jury considered the long history of the organization, the generalized support of the Chilean people, and their effective and proven commitment to overcome poverty, from the front of direct solidary action and also from the front of an universal definition of poverty, which has even been worthy of recognition from the Chilean State”.


Hogar de Cristo

The Charity “Hogar de Cristo” was originated in Chile in 1944 as an initiative of San Alberto Hurtado, a Jesuit priest whom had great influence in the social thinking of the country. The Charity’s main purpose is to reduce exclusion of the more vulnerable and poorer sectors and bring society together in the fight for their social integration. It has had a great development and has established itself as the leading Chilean institution working with poor people. It has tended to the needs of the most excluded groups in their society, acting quickly upon emergencies (Santiago’s flood in 1994 and the earthquake on Feb 27, 2010), adapting their methodologies and lines of action to the changes produced in society, collaborating and affecting the different sectors. In recent years, they have developed campaigns and proposed models of intervention to influence public policy directed to eradicate poverty and inequality.



Asociación Colectivo Mujeres al derecho, Colombia (USD $75,000)

This organization executes activities in the Colombian Caribbean region since 2005. Through their program “Multicultural Space for Women” they support over 2,000 indigenous and African-Colombian displaced women to promote and encourage the integral human development and sustainability in their communities, through participation in different decision making spaces at local, provincial and national levels.


IXIM, A.C., Mexico (USD $50,000)

IXIM A.C. works with and supports highly marginalized tzeltales communities in the municipality of Ocosingo, Chiapas, with the goal of transitioning them from merely receiving help to actually increasing their sustainable production of food. The model “Camino IXIM” combines impactful actions at different time terms: at the immediate term, mitigating hunger in between harvests through the provision of corn, at the medium term through sustainable maize fields, orchards, water tanks and poultry to increase the production and food quality, and at the long term with agro-ecological sowing, benefiting the recovery of the soil’s fertility.


Proyecto Transgénero, Ecuador (USD $25,000)

The Project was born in 2002 with the purpose to work with communities of transgender sex workers, official institutions workers, national police and the general transgender population in the city of Quito. The project created the Legal Patrol- an innovative approach based on the “alternative use of the law”- which consists in the intervention of different teams of “itinerant legal counseling” roaming the streets offering legal counseling to the transgender sex workers. 

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Grupo Vidanta Ranks as Top Hotel and Resort Company in 2013 Best Companies to Work® in Latin America

Grupo Vidanta Ranks as Top Hotel and Resort Company in 2013 Best Companies to Work® in Latin America

Strong showings across the board for second consecutive year

Grupo Vidanta, Mexico’s leading developer of resorts, today announced that it is recognized as the top hotel and resort company in the American award known as “2013 Best Companies to Work®” in Latin America. Grupo Vidanta’s showing placed ahead of many other well-known resort brands in Latin America.

Grupo Vidanta was awarded eleventh place overall for all companies with over 500 employees in Latin America. With no other resort company winning better rankings, the following Grupo Vidanta property locations were ranked among the best companies to work for in the 500+ employee category:

-Grupo Vidanta properties in Riviera Maya
-Grupo Vidanta properties in Mazatlan

The Grupo Vidanta website sums up their philosophy perfectly: “Our people are happy and that is our greatest asset. The passion they display every day to deliver the essence of happiness to every guest is an amazing thing for a guest to experience and a hallmark of a Vidanta vacation.”

Grupo Vidanta operates full-service luxury beach resorts in Mexico's finest beaches, under Grand Luxxe, The Grand Bliss, The Bliss, The Grand Mayan, Mayan Palace, Ocean Breeze and Sea Garden brands.

“Being named for this award year after year is such a great honor,” says Eric DuBaele, Director of Hotel Operations for Grupo Vidanta. “It just confirms that our company philosophy in regards to our employees is something special.  First it was Mexico, now Latin America.  Who knows what we can accomplish next?”

“Great Place to Work®” had roots beginning in 1981. Over 25 years of research culminated in the world’s first 100 Best Companies to Work For workplace ranking in 1997. Great Place to Work gradually opened doors in 45 countries with more to come, with the first rankings for Mexican companies listed in 2002.

Grupo Vidanta offers a variety of programs to encourage employee development and job satisfaction:

Educational Programs: These programs are designed to promote a safer work environment.  Each year the company sponsors a health week, a safe-workplace week, and a week where health professionals conduct free physicals for staff members. 

Mayan With You: This program allows Grupo Vidanta workers to help their families by giving them access to scholarships for their children beginning in middle school all the way up to university studies. 

Well Done!: This program encourages excellent performance by employees in the workplace, and it also encourages individual effort.  

Elite Club: This is a program created for workers who exhibit excellent work ethics over a one-year period.  These employees have priority in the “Mayan With You” scholarships, different product sales available to workers, access to the sports facility at the Delia Moran Foundation and job security during low seasons.

Innovating Together: This is an open forum where workers can express their ideas and submit suggestions for improvement in any department. 

Grupo Vidanta employees also enjoy amenities such as free cafeteria services, free bus routes to and from the hotel, and one week to vacation at a Grupo Vidanta brand resort depending on their level of employment.

The ranking for Best Companies to Work® is the result of a rigorous process of analysis and assessment of the views of employees and the corporate culture. The main objectives of the rankings from the Great Place to Work® Institute Latin America are to facilitate knowledge management and share experiences among organizations that know how to get the best results from business by improving the quality of their workplaces.

Friday, April 19, 2013

TIME Magazine's latest 2013 Top 100 Most Influential People edition features Grupo Vidanta and its founder Mr. Daniel Chavez Moran

Mexican resort specialist Grupo Vidanta is gearing up to launch six new luxury brands throughout Latin America.  A visionary group that has contributed to the socioeconomic development of Mexico for more than 35 years, Vidanta invests in some of the region’s most spectacular vacation destinations, responding to market demands with stunning, state-of-the-art establishments.

Two of its brands, the Grand Mayan, which is present in Nuevo Vallarta, Acapulco, Riviera Maya and Los Cabos, the Grand Bliss, in Nuevo Vallarta, have earned the AAA Four Diamond Award for delivering a luxurious experience with top-notch services and amenities.  “Mexico is the land of opportunity”, says Vidanta founder Daniel Chavez Moran.  “Even if we were not Mexican, we would invest in Mexico, because it is about to take off in a big way.  The workforce here is second to none.  We employ around 14,000 workers, and this year were voted eighth-best company to work for.  Our employees are more than happy with us, and this filters down to the service provision.”

With its aim of keeping its sites exclusive, Vidanta veers away from the all-inclusive concept, believing that a quality service offering best value will be most beneficial for its guests.  “We are often full or at least at 80% occupancy throughout the year, so it’s a good strategy and ultimately the most profitable,” Chavez Moran says.  “We are currently building more than 120,000 square meters a year, which works out at between 500 and 600 rooms of 200 meters a year.  Our prices are not the lowest in the industry, but we’re sure they offer the best value for the money.

“As a businessman, I would say to investors: ‘Stay where you are, I don’t want any more competitors’’.  But as a Mexican, I would tell them to come,” Chavez Moran says.  Mexico is the best place in the world and now offers the opportunity of a lifetime.”

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Daniel Chavez Moran of Vidanta Foundation Selected to Join the United Nations Advisory Council of Citizen Safety Project

Daniel Chavez Moran, Mexico
Daniel Chavez Moran, Mexico
Founder of Grupo Vidanta to join new Council created by United Nations Development Program (UNDP) with dignitaries in policy, academia, business, media and civil society
The Regional Directorate for Latin America and the Caribbean of the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) has created a new Advisory Council of Citizen Safety Project. Its goal is to produce a comprehensive Report on Citizen Safety and Development as part of its Citizen Security and Governance area. Mr. Daniel Chavez Moran, founder of Grupo Vidanta and Vidanta Foundation, has been chosen as one of a select group of distinguished individuals to join the Council. Mr. Moran is the first and only businessman from all of Mexico handpicked to join the Council, receiving this distinguished honor based on his breadth of knowledge ranging from the private sector to public policy.

The process started in September 2011 and is scheduled to be completed in mid-2013, and will include a final diagnosis of the Latin America insecurity situation, data collection, case analysis and policy recommendations. Rafael Fernandez de Castro, former Presidential Advisor to President Felipe Calderon of Mexico and Head of the Academic Department of International Studies at ITAM, Mexico will lead coordination efforts.

The Council includes several high profile individuals:

-Daniel Chavez Moran, founder of Grupo Vidanta and Vidanta Foundation

-Ernesto Zedillo, former President of Mexico

-Michelle Bachelet, former President of Chile

- Beatriz Paredes, former Senator of Mexico

- Adriana Cisneros, Vice Chairman of the Board and Director of Strategy, Cisneros Group

-Bill Bratton, former Commissioner for the New York Police Department and the Los Angeles Police Department

-Heraldo Muñoz, UN Secretary General Regional Director for Latin America and the Caribbean of the United Nations Program for Development

-Alvaro Saieh, President of Corp Group Interhold S.A.

-Tabaré Vazquez, former President of Uraguay

-Gregory F. Traverton, Director, RAND Center for Global Risk and Security

-Norman Quijano, Mayor of San Salvador, El Salvador

-Carlos Romero, Interior Minister of Bolivia

-Ana Palacio, former Minister of Foreign Affairs for Spain, Member of the State Council of Spain

One of the UNDP’s priorities is to create processes for analysis, consultation, consensus-building, strategizing and citizen involvement to contribute towards a better understanding and treatment of the major public policy challenge of citizen security. It was decided to create an Advisory Council of Citizen Safety Project composed of various present and former Latin American presidents, distinguished representatives of academic, politics, the mass media, civil society and the private sector. The Council will be the main advisory body towards the proposed stated objectives.

Daniel Chavez Moran founded Grupo Vidanta in 1974, a business dedicated to the development of luxury hotels and resorts in Mexico. In 2010, CNN named him one of the top 100 most important businessmen in Mexico. In 2005, he retired from his executive positions to focus on philanthropic endeavors. In 2005, he founded the non-profit organization  Vidanta Foundation  whose primary aim is the reduction of poverty in Latin America through the promotion of economic development, social sciences and culture.

Learn more about the Regional Directorate for Latin America and the Caribbean of the UNDP at

Daniel Chavez Moran's Legacy Lives On

Vidanta Foundation's "Lifetime Achievement" Award, 2013

This is an open call for all applicants to submit for consideration for the 2013 Lifetime Achievement Award.

Total prize monies of $100,000 USD will be granted to an individual or non-profit organization which most convincingly shows achievements in fighting the problem of poverty, inequality and discrimination in the Americas and the Caribbean.

This award will be funded generously by the Vidanta Foundation, in cooperation with the OAS (Organization of American States) and the IASG (Ibero-American Secretary General).

Mr. Daniel Chavez Moran's legacy lives on in the continuing efforts of others. Best wishes to all applicants.
Photo of Daniel Chavez Moran Grupo Vidanta Mr. Daniel Chavez Moran, circa 1978. Real estate developer and philanthropist.