Tuning up: Zihuatanejo set to host first guitar festival

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ZIHUATANEJO, Mexico -- Attention guitar aficionados.

From April 18 to 25, Zihuatanejo will host the first of what it hopes will become an annual event, the Zihuatanejo Guitar Festival, featuring musicians specializing in classical, blues, jazz and flamenco guitar.

The event will take place in seven main venues, including hotels, restaurants, bars and clubs around Zihuatanejo Bay; these include a kick-off concert at Las Gatas Beach, located across the bay from Zihuatanejo and accessible via a 10-minute boat ride.

The event will be held at the Las Gatas Beach Club, a Tahitian-style complex of bungalows with a bar, restaurant and a private beach.

The only resort scheduled to host festival events is the 70-room Villa del Sol on Zihuatanejo's Playa La Ropa beach, which will feature two dinner shows at its La Cantina restaurant on April 20 and 22.

Rates at Villa del Sol during the festival week range from $285 per night, single or double, for a superior room to $1,050 for the Presidential Suite.

For information or reservations, call (888) 389-2645 or visit www.hotelvilladelsol.net.

Musicians scheduled to appear include Jenny Kerr, Phil "Philbillie" Milner, Jimi Mamou, Nick Vigarino, Steve Denyes, Steve Glotzer, Jose Luis Cobos, Eric Reid, Josie Kuhn and Juanito.

The event will include a free Guitar Fair -- a jam session for local musicians -- on April 25 at Zihuatanejo's main plaza.

In addition to music, the Guitar Fair will feature food kiosks and artisans from the Lone Star Guitar Factory in the nearby village of Paracho, who will demonstrate the art of guitar making.

Individual ticket prices start at $4.50 and run to $90 for Platinum Passes that allow entry to all concerts and events.

For more information, visit www.zihua-ixtapa.com/zihua/guitarfest or e-mail [email protected].

To contact reporter Jorge Sidron, send e-mail to [email protected].

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