Originally conceived by Mark Rome and other associates as a hamburger pub, The Palm opened on Olas Altas street some 11 years ago. Somehow, however, the venue itself seemed to have its own ideas from the very beginning. “One night, a performer on vacation stopped by and asked on a whim if she could perform,” Rome recalls. Her performances packed the house several nights in a row. Consequently, The Palm “created itself” as The Palm Cabaret and Bar, a cozy performance space that has increasingly attracted national and international performers throughout the years, becoming a centerpiece in this popular Puerto Vallarta neighborhood.
Taking advantage of his theater background, Tracy Parks, who’s also been a Puerto Vallarta regular for the past 11 years, partnered with Rome to bring production value up a notch or two, attracting more sophisticated performers and a broader audience. A former marketer for Chicago’s Lyric Opera, he oversees the venue’s new website, www.thepalmpv.com
, as well as social media promotional efforts, not to mention promoting personal friend and renowned vocal impressionist Mark Alan Smith, a major success locally for the past two years.
In its essence, the 100-person-capacity venue itself has not changed much over the years. However, recent improvements, such as an acoustic baby grand, larger stage (now suitable for up to 10 performers) and better audio and lighting equipment, have increasingly drawn more performers who, thanks to word of mouth, are seeking out the venue in hope of enjoying a working vacation in Puerto Vallarta. And to appeal to broader audiences, Rome and Parks are including more Mexican performers, as well, such as local favorites Los Bambinos and crooner Jorge Acosta, an unexpected sleeper hit this season.