Finally, after three months of hard work and countless hours of planning and organizing, Taste of Playa went off to rave reviews. The event saw nearly three thousand Playa del Carmen residents and tourists come through the grounds. Some came just to look around. many more stayed to enjoy the fabulous food, the music and the time to catch up with old friends. It seemed that everyone I know was there, eating and laughing under the hot Caribbean sun.

Taste of Playa 2009

As we hoped, the 25 participating restaurants, bars and specialty food vendors all brought their "A" game to the event. Each one of them, dressed in their best chef whites, put out their signature dishes, the food and flavors that distinguish them as chefs and artists. As I walked through the event, stopping at each of the tables, I was so happy to see everyone smiling and chatting, promoting their businesses and having fun! I am really proud of the event we created and look forward to doing it even better in 2010. There are hundreds of people to thank and I plan to do so very soon. So many people contributed to the success of this event and we are truly grateful for all their support and assistance.

Taste of Playa 2009

In the end, we consider this 1st Taste of Playa to be a success. The restaurants were all happy and got a lot of promotional bang for their buck. Our corporate sponsors got some good exposure and a chance to contribute to the local community. The attendees, from all reports, enjoyed the atmosphere, the music and, of course, the fabulous food, all for a reasonable price. A lot of people have asked me why we chose to to hold this event in the low season, the toughest time of year for most businesses. Sure. We would have had an even bigger turnout and made a lot more money during the high season when the city is packed with flush tourists, but that is not entirely the point of this festival. It is our hope that Taste of Playa will grow over the years to become a real destination event, something that travelers make their plans around in order to be able to attend. It is our hope that this event, and others like it that will surely follow, will help to shorten the usual "low season" by a week or two and put some much needed cash into the pockets of local businesses. As Taste of Playa grows and becomes more well known, certainly the participants will benefit but so also will the local hotel owners, shop keeps, taxi drivers and tour guides. In the end, the whole city benefits from supporting these community events!

There are many more pictures to come but here is a nice sampling from the day.

Taste of Playa 2009 

Taste of Playa 2009 

Taste of Playa 2009 

Taste of Playa 2009

Taste of Playa 2009

Taste of Playa 2009 

Taste of Playa 2009 

Taste of Playa 2009

Taste of Playa 2009 

Taste of Playa 2009 

Taste of Playa 2009 

Taste of Playa 2009 

Taste of Playa 2009 

Taste of Playa 2009 

Taste of Playa 2009 

Taste of Playa 2009 

2009 has been a challenging year for the business owners in Playa del Carmen and all along the Riviera Maya. Many of the people we approached this year for the 1st Taste of Playa simply could not afford to take part this year due to financial restrictions. The fact that so many people did participate in and contribute to this untested, fledgling event is truly remarkable and I hope we managed to make it all worthwhile and valuable for everyone. In an effort to make Taste of Playa 2010 even better and more successful, we would like to hear your feedback. If you attended Taste of Playa 2009 and would like to give us your comments and suggestions, please complete this quick and easy Guest Survey.

 

***If you would like use of any of the photos in this entry, please contact stutravelling@yahoo.com.