Luna Blue's PlayaZone

By Tony & Cheri, Live from the Luna Blue in Playa del Carmen, Mexico

  • Subscribe

  • Top Posts & Pages

  • Playa del Carmen Weather

  • Categories

  • Archives

  • Blog Stats

    • 714,251 hits
  • Pages

  • Networked Blogs

Posts Tagged ‘Music’

New Orleans Jazz Fest 2014…Wanna Go?

Posted by Tony & Cheri on March 1, 2014

The Inimitable Bruce Springsteen

Unfortunately we are unable to make our yearly trek to New Orleans for Jazz Fest this year. That means that our timeshare in the French Quarter is available for rental from May 2-9, 2014.

The timeshare is in the Quarter House, which is located on Chartres Street in the French Quarter. It will accommodate four people (one bedroom and a pullout couch in the living room). Each suite has its own completely furnished kitchen, dishes, linens, private jacuzzi bath or walk-in shower with European shower heads, color television, DVD players, and everything you need to enjoy a relaxing vacation in the French Quarter of New Orleans. Hi-speed wireless internet connections are available in all rooms as is private telephone service. There is also a courtyard swimming pool, maid service, laundry facilities, and concierge services. There is a complimentary continental breakfast on Saturday and Sunday mornings served in the lush tropical courtyard. We’ve been staying at the Quarter House exclusively for our trips to New Orleans for over 15 years, and we love it.

Another nice thing about the Quarter House is its location – just half a block from Canal Street and right around the corner from the Sheraton, which is where the Jazz Fest buses run from. It’s also just a couple of blocks to Bourbon Street and the regular fun of the French Quarter. It couldn’t be more ideally located.

The great news is that our timeshare period covers the second weekend of Jazz Fest, which is always the biggest and the best. Musical acts during the second weekend this year include:

On Friday, May 2: Christina Aguilera, Chaka Khan, Alabama Shakes, Walter “Wolfman” Washington & the Roadmasters, Amanda Shaw & the Cute Guys and many more.

On Saturday May 3: Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band, Al Jarreau, Allen Toussaint, Johnny Winter, Better Than Ezra and many more.

And on Sunday May 4: Arcade Fire, Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue, John Fogerty, Bobby Womack, Delbert McClinton, Chick Corea & the Vigil, Aaron Neville and many more.

And of course throughout that weekend the bars, clubs and music venues throughout the French Quarter will be offering amazing concerts and performances.

If you’ve never been to Jazz Fest, you should go at least once. It’s an amazing festival of music, food and culture set in one of our very favorite cities in the world, New Orleans. Once you go, you’ll want to go year after year!

Rooms at the Quarter House generally run $375 per night. However we are offering our timeshare for the entire week (Checking in Friday May 2 and out Friday May 9) for just $1200 US. Please email us for more information.

The Courtyard at the Quarter House
The Quarter House courtyard

A typical room at the Quarter House
A room at the Quarter House

‘LIKE’ the Luna Blue Hotel & Bar

Posted in Events & Happenings, Recommendations | Tagged: , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Owning a Saloon in Mexico: The Luna Blue Bar Story

Posted by Tony & Cheri on November 29, 2011

Luna Blue BarWhen we first thought about opening a bar in Mexico, we simply wanted a quiet little place for our guests to have a cocktail in the evening before and after visiting 5th Avenue.

We did have some strong opinions about how our bar should look. We wanted it to match the old-school tropical ambiance of our Luna Blue Hotel. So we decided it would be open air, with ceiling fans, a roof made of palm leaves, and–in the Caribbean tradition–swings instead of stools around the bar.

We also decided there would be no TV and no DJs playing music we didn’t enjoy. Instead we installed satellite radio and turned it to Radio Margaritaville. We wanted our bar to be funky, laid back and tropical. In short, we built the kind of place where we ourselves would want to drink margaritas.

After building the bar, we designed a few special drinks with the help of our good friend Eric Rogers, one of San Francisco’s best bartenders. We have great top shelf margaritas like the “Papa T Margarita” and twists on old favorites like the “Playa Colada.” We also have unique drinks nobody had seen before (but have since been widely copied) like the “Beso Cubano” (Cuban Kiss) and our all-time most popular drink, the “Sarita B Careful” margarita made with pomegranate infused tequila.

Leon J Morton at the Luna Blue BarOf course one of the most important parts of a bar is the bartender. And we found the perfect one in Jorge Sierra. Jorge is honest, hardworking, speaks perfect English, loves people, always has a smile and pours a strong drink. And he is creative. He is always coming up with new ideas for drinks like our very popular “Sex on the Bar” cocktail. Yes, Jorge is the inventor of Sex on the Bar!

Once we had the bar built, the drinks figured out and a great bartender hired we looked around the place and decided we needed one more thing…live music. After all what is a margarita in paradise without some good tunes to listen to? Since we couldn’t get Jimmy or Kenny, we hired local musicians whose music we liked…guys who played funky or bluesy or plain old good rock n’ roll.

Over the years the best musicians in Playa have performed at the Luna Blue. Chris Bolister, “Bad” Brad Ryan, most of the Nasty Bastards at one time or another, Barefoot Skinny, Pako Mondragon and Mike Grabow (who wrote “Where I Want to Be” about the Luna Blue). You can currently see Mike Grabow every week at the Luna Blue Bar. Even the infamous local legend Sharkey has growled “House of the Rising Sun” at the Luna Blue Bar.

This coming holiday season we are going to keep up that tradition of great music while trying to expand the type of music that is available here in Playa del Carmen. And one type of music that Playa needs more of (and we can’t get enough of) is the BLUES!

This December we are bringing back Blues Hall of Fame artist Leon J Morton. Jay (as he is known to his friends) is famous for his traditional roots Blues renditions and his bring-down-the-house performance of Blues-inspired rock n’ roll classics. Jay’s extraordinary performances have been honored by the Telluride Blues Festival and by the National Blues Hall of Fame which has designated him an “Ambassador of the Blues.” When he is in Playa Jay plays exclusively at the Luna Blue Bar.

Jay will be performing his repertoire of classic Blues songs on Friday Dec. 2nd. On Saturday, Dec. 3rd, he will be back offering his take on the best in Rock, Rhythm and Blues, as well as some original tunes. On Sunday, Dec. 4th Jay will be playing mellow and easy at our Barbeque and Pool Party.

Luna Blue BarThen later this month Brent “Guitar” Parkin will be returning to the Blue. Brent is one of the greats on the Canadian Blues scene and winner of the Canadian Recording Arts and Sciences’ prestigious Juno Award. In his forty years of performing he has toured with the likes of BB King, Johnny Winter, Otis Rush and Bo Diddley among others. The Edmonton Sun calls Brent, “one of this country’s best blues guitarists.” The Winnipeg Free Press says Brent is “One of the Prairie’s great blues guitarists.” The bottom line is that Brent puts on a heck of a show every time he plays.

Not only will Brent be a regular at the Luna Blue Bar this winter, but we are especially proud to announce he will perform at our New Years Eve celebration. That will be quite a party.

And we are pleased to announce that Brent has just agreed to play at for us on Sunday, Dec. 4th at our Barbeque and Pool Party. Both Jay Morton and Brent Parkin the same afternoon. We’re very excited!

Of course this year the Luna Blue Bar has something new: a swimming pool. Our beautiful sunken tropical garden pool is open most nights for bar guests to take a dip and float beneath the stars while sipping a margarita or listening to music. We are the only swing bar in town with its own pool. We think that is kind of special.

In the end the Luna Blue Bar turned out to be bigger and more popular than we ever dreamed. But in a lot of ways it is still exactly what we wanted when we decided to build it…it’s still a great place to get a margarita, enjoy a laid back tropical vibe and hear good tunes from great musicians. It’s also a good place to hang out and chat with your friends…or make some new ones. What more can you ask from a saloon in tropical Mexico?

And who knows…maybe someday Jimmy or Kenny will drop by…maybe.

If you’ve been to our bar or one of our events, please share your best memories in a comment below. Gracias!

Jay Morton

Mike Grabow

Barefoot SKinny

Chris Bolister

‘LIKE’ the Luna Blue Hotel & Bar

Posted in Events & Happenings, The Hotel & Bar, What's New | Tagged: , , , , | 7 Comments »

Jimmy Buffett Concert at the Luna Blue Bar

Posted by Tony & Cheri on May 11, 2008

Ha! Made you look! :)

The Bar at the Luna BlueWe’ve always been big Jimmy Buffett fans. His music, books and concerts were a huge inspiration to us when we decided to run away to the tropics and buy the Luna Blue Hotel & Garden in Playa del Carmen, Mexico. And when we decided to build our own tropical bar, images of “Margaritaville” (the dream, not the restaurants) danced in our heads. We tried to build a bar that was our idea of what a little bar in paradise should be. So we built a palm thatched roof over a bar surrounded by swings, not stools. We placed it on a deck overlooking a garden filled with tropical flowers, hammocks and a waterfall.

Okay, perfect, we thought. But what about tunes?? We spent a lot of time loading our ipod and searching itunes and came up with some good ideas. But then we realized the answer was right in front of us: the perfect soundtrack to living in Margaritaville is Radio Margaritaville. Yes, it has lots of Buffett, which we like. But it also plays other great musicians associated with living or vacationing in “someplace hot.” The Neville Brothers, Bob Marley, Steven Marley, lots of other Marleys, Kenny Chesney, Marcia Ball, Willie Nelson can all be heard there. The sounds run from pop to soul to reggae to blues–just about anything you’d want to hear while laying on a beach with a cold one in your hand. And we’ve had a soft spot in our hearts for Radio Margaritaville ever since last fall when they broadcast our plea to help the victims of Hurricane Dean in Mahahual, Mexico.

So we bought a Sirius satellite radio, climbed precariously to the top of the highest part of the hotel to install the antenna, hung the speakers from the rafters and threw the switch. It started a party that has continued ever since.

Last week, while standing in the front row at the edge of the stage for Jimmy Buffett’s performance at Jazz Fest in New Orleans (yes, a trip report will be coming soon), we came up with a fun idea for the bar. Since all of Jimmy’s concerts are broadcast live on Radio Margaritaville, we thought we would bring the party to Playa del Carmen by way of satellite. So…..during every Buffett concert this summer, our legendary bartender Jose will be pouring 2 for 1 margaritas to the accompaniment of Jimmy’s live concert!

Jimmy Buffett, live at Jazz Fest, New Orleans 2008All of Jimmy’s concerts are Tuesdays, Thursdays or Saturdays. The Luna Blue Jimmy Buffett Concert Hours start as listed below, Central Time (aka Playa del Carmen time).

June 5, 2008 – 7:00 pm (from Lakewood Ampitheatre, Atlanta GA)
June 7, 2008 – 7:00 pm (from Time Warner Cable Music Pavilion at Walnut Creek – Raleigh, NC)
June 10, 2008 – 7:00 pm (from DTE Energy Music Center – Clarkston, MI)
June 12, 2008 – 7:00 pm (from Madision Square Garden – New York, NY)
June 14, 2008 – 7:00 pm (from Citizens Bank Park – Philadelphia, PA)
July 17, 2008 – 7:00 pm (from Riverbend Music Center – Cincinnati, OH)
July 19, 2008 – 8:00 pm (from Alpine Valley Music Theatre – East Troy, WI)
July 22, 2008 – 7:00 pm (from Post-Gazette Pavilion – Pittsburgh PA)
July 24, 2008 – 7:00 pm (from Toyota Park – Bridgeview, IL)
July 26, 2008 – 7:00 pm (from Toyota Park – Bridgeview, IL)
July 29, 2008 – 7:00 pm (from Verizon Wireless Music Center – Noblesville, IN )
August 24, 2008 – 8:00 pm (from Boardwalk Hall – Atlantic City, NJ)
August 27, 2008 – 8:00 pm (from Nikon at Jones Beach Theater – Wantagh, NY)
August 30, 2008 – 8:00 pm (from Nissan Pavilion – Bristow, VA )
September 1, 2008 – 8:00 pm (from Nissan Pavilion – Bristow, VA )
September 4, 2008 – 8:00 pm (from Tweeter Center for the Performing Arts – Mansfield, MA )
September 6, 2008 – 8:00 pm (from Tweeter Center for the Performing Arts – Mansfield, MA )
October 16, 2008 – 10:00 pm (from Cricket Wireless Amphitheatre – Chula Vista, CA)
October 18, 2008 – 10:00 pm (from MGM Grand – Las Vegas, NV)
October 21, 2008 – 10:00 pm (from Shoreline Amphitheatre – Mountain View, CA)
October 25, 2008 – 10:00 pm (from MGM Grand – Las Vegas, NV)

If you’re a Parrothead, or want to be a Parrothead, or don’t even know or care what a Parrothead is, stop by the Luna Blue Bar this summer for The Luna Blue Jimmy Buffett Concert Hour. Grass skirts and coconut bras are optional. :)

We got
your lost
shaker of salt
right here,
Bubba.
Jimmy's backup singers, Tina Gullickson and Nadira Shakur, Jazz Fest, New Orleans 2008

Posted in Living the Dream, The Hotel & Bar | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments »

 
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 692 other followers