Known for its beautiful beaches and stunning blue waters, Cancun remains a popular destination for travelers searching for a tropical getaway.
Tucked inside the luxury Cancun resort at Grand Fiesta Americana Coral Beach, I was treated to a dining adventure unlike any other I’ve experienced. As one of the resort’s seven restaurants, award-winning La Joya, is home to the video mapping culinary experience. A unique gastronomic journey takes the diner beyond the ordinary culinary experience. As the brainchild of the resort property General Manager, Alberto Gurrola, with the support of Epson technology and an investment of $180 million, guests can now learn the story of southeastern Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula through video mapping and voice narration as they dine.
The distinctive custom-designed 16-person table welcomes diners to an experience like no other, immersing them in an educational and culinary adventure.
It all begins with each guest being assigned his or her own private server. The chairs around the enormous table are strategically spaced in order for the server to present each dish to the guest at a time precisely coordinated with the narrative. The eight-course meal is paired with food that reflects both the historical theme and local cuisine.
Each historic milestone brings an entrée and beverage to complement the era. The narration begins with the prehistoric era and moves to present day. As dinosaurs roam the hot, dry volcanic terrain, the first entrée is presented in a volcano-shaped bowl. Lobster is served to reflect the life forms inhabiting the region at that time. After experiencing a massive asteroid hit which many experts attribute to the end of the dinosaur era, the Yucatan Peninsula was plunged into an ice age. On cue, the next course at La Joya is creatively delivered in a misty chilled bowl. And so the feast continues.
At the end of the dinner, as guests relish all the sites, sounds and tastes they’ve experienced, there is one final surprise. To top off the evening, a melodic Spanish serenade fills the restaurant as the singer’s white ball gown acts as a stunning backdrop for a stream of beautiful images.
The entire experience lasts approximately 1½ hours, and is available only on Friday and Saturday evenings. As a traveler and explorer an individual would be amiss not indulge in the exclusive opportunity. So, the next time you are in Cancun make your reservations early, you will not be disappointed.
Cover photo courtesy Grand Fiesta Americana Coral Beach Cancun