The Real Baja

Tijuana’s New Old Hot Spot : Plaza Fiesta

A new generation of bars

Tijuana’s New Old Hot Spot : Plaza FiestaImages and video by Gerardo Cornejo/SanDiegoRed
Images and video by Gerardo Cornejo/SanDiegoRed

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Way back in time in Tijuana in the mid 80’s there was a place called Plaza Fiesta that started as a place for fancy restaurants, doctor’s offices and boutiques among other things. Some of today’s better known restaurants such as Saverio’s and La Taberna Española got their start there. A couple of the restaurants started having a party atmosphere and all of a sudden and without any planning (like many things in TJ) it became Tijuana’s favorite nightspot. Bars sprang up overnight and Plaza Fiesta was true to it’s name with hundreds of Tijuanenses partying at the bars and in the alleys in the shopping center. You could buy a cold beer in one place and walk over to another bar to continue the party (I sure miss those times). The restaurants and other businesses started leaving and only the bars and party atmosphere were left behind.

Bars like Sotano Suizo, Ranas, Mi Barra, Monte Picacho, Porky’s, Chez and many others had Tijuana partying every day of the week for over twenty years initially with an alternative vibe which then turned into more of a club scene and eventually into a dreaded (for me and many, many others) norteño scene. When this started happening many of the alternative and club kids stopped going to Plaza Fiesta because it was filled with “mangueras”, kind of like Mexico’s wannabe gangsters, and most of the bars started closing. But to every bad side there’s a good side.

After La Mezcalera opened, Porky’s, Chez and Zebra Mexican Pub moved to Calle 6ta to take advantage of the new scene being born in Downtown Tijuana, AKA El Centro, and created a new alternative destination. A ton of bars opened up but after only about two years Calle 6ta has lost some of its luster although it still gets pretty packed on weekends. So what happens now? You guessed it! Tijuana’s in the know hip party people are going back to Plaza Fiesta where a new generation of bars is opening up.

Video : Plaza Fiesta

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