It could be said that the founders of La Palapa restaurant, the late Rodelinda Perez and her husband Guy Dickey, were real visionaries because when the restaurant first opened its door in 1959 Puerto Vallarta was practically an unknown spot. The city had to wait five more years for John Huston to film his movie “The Night of Iguana” and make Vallarta famous.
In 1959 there was no land access to La Palapa; the bridge on Río Cuale didn’t exist and you had to pass the river in a jeep or beg one of the two (!) city taxi drivers to cross the not so high water. After “The Night of the Iguana” success, La Palapa quickly became the place to be, a trendy restaurant loved by the movie stars. From the very beginning it combined exquisite food, great atmosphere and live music. Five years ago, this iconic restaurant celebrated its 50th anniversary!
It is located on Los Muertos Beach in the Olas Altas, in the very heart of the Romantic Zone, the hippest area in Puerto Vallarta. Locals love it as much as tourists and it is definitely something to boast about. Customers love the style of La Palapa, elegant, casual, and very romantic especially by night. The candlelit tables on the beach look spectacular and sophisticated and you can enjoy your exquisite dinner with fine wine and live Latin Jazz, to say nothing about the moonlit bay.
La Palapa is obviously not only great atmosphere but first of all, great food. No matter what time of the day, from breakfast, through lunch to dinner, you will always feel satisfied. When I visit La Palapa, I’m always impressed how they reinvent the menu and always have something new and surprising. Apart from that, their collection of wine and spirits is impressive, almost any wine you ask, they will have it.
La Palapa has also won several international awards for its innovative dishes made of fresh local ingredients. It is the best place to try various seafood plates; cream of lobster is an interesting appetizer and “La Palapa Shrimp” with
guanabana and coconut sauce is a must. You can’t forget to leave some space for the dessert; La Palapa is famous for them. I personally recommend profiteroles with vanilla ice cream, chocolate and extremely delicious cream of tequila sauce. Guava mousse with an imaginative chile ancho cookie is also not to be missed.
During the day La Palapa transforms into a beach club with all sorts of water sports to choose from. You can also simply relax yourself on a beach chair while reading a book and sipping an ice-cold cerveza or margarita. If you don’t want to lose any minute of your tanning session the waiter will bring your lunch to your spot. Guacamole and fresh ceviche will always be a perfect choice.
So, during your next visit to Puerto Vallarta, don’t miss La Palapa. You will love it at any moment of the day or night.