History of the San Pedro International Costa Maya Festival
It was the summer of 1991 when the first festival took place. It was organized by the then San Pedro chapter of the Belize Chamber of Commerce, which was headed by Mr. John Edwards. The festival has gone through a lot of changes since its inception and it has grown to be Belize's biggest and most anticipated event of the year. One of the most significant changes has been the name from the Sea & Air Festival to the San Pedro International Costa Maya Festival. Another significant change has been from the beach queen competition to an international pageant called 'La Reina de la Costa Maya Internacional' with participation of beauty ambassadors from Central and North America.
In 1994 the Festival Committee for the first time introduced to the festival the participation of international artists with 'Los Ilegales' from the Dominican Republic. Ever since, San Pedro has seen numerous international artists like Kumbia Kings, Pablo Montero, and Ricardo Montaner. The festival continues to promote the culture of the Mundo Maya countries with their folklore dances, music, and food. It is a four day event which starts on the first Thursday of August with the selection of Miss Costa Maya International followed with the grand opening on Friday, which is attended by government officials, ambassadors, and other dignitaries. Saturday is known as Noche Internacional and it is the biggest evening of the festival when the international star takes center stage. On Sunday the final day of the festival more cultural shows, comedians and music close the event. It is here at the festival that one can see Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, and Belize come together to showcase the best their country has to offer.
The week of the festival is the most colourful and busiest week on the island. People from all over the country come to the island to be part of this one of a kind event. Hotels, restaurant, cart rentals, airlines, and water taxis are all busy and need to be booked in advance. It is a week when the air is filled with Punta, reggaeton, reggae, ballads, and salsa mixed with some marimba, steel pan, and mariachi music.
The San Pedro International Costa Maya Festival is indeed a grand event that is enjoyed by all those that participate. If you have not been to one maybe it is time to join your friends in San Pedro, Belize for a week of entertainment.
Friday, Saturday, Sunday
La Reina de la Costa Maya Internacional
2007 Festival:La Reina de la Costa Maya Internacional
Festivals pre-2007 click here.
Viva San Pedro International Costa Maya Festival!
History of the La Reina de la Costa Maya Internacional Pageant
2007 Reina de la Costa Maya
2006 Reina de la Costa Maya
2005 Reina de la Costa Maya
2004 Reina de la Costa Maya
2003 Reina de la Costa Maya
2002 Reina de la Costa Maya
2001 Reina de la Costa Maya
2000 Reina de la Costa Maya
1999 Reina de la Costa Maya
2007 - Maria Teresa Jeffrey - Belize
Mexico Isis Amor Barrera - 1st runner-up
Nicaragua Daniella Lacayo - 2nd runner up
Mexico - best costume
2006 - Lissa Viera Saenz - Honduras
Mexico Cindy Cajuste - 1st runner up
Nicaragua Anahir Rocha - best costume
2005 - Johanna Fernandez - Costa Rica
Belize Opal Enriquez - 1st runner up
Mexico Maria Jose - 2nd runner up
Costa Rica - best costume
2004 - Marisol Rojas Vivas - Mexico
Costa Rica Shirley Calvo - 1st runner-up
Belize Farah Evans - 2nd runner up
Mexico - best costume
2003 - Leilah Pandy - Belize
Guatemala Carina Velasquez - 1st runner-up
Belize - best costume
2002 - Elsa Burgos Perez- Mexico
Guatemala Paula Alonso - 1st runner up
El Salvador Pamela Portillo - Best Skin by Neutrogena
2001 - Evelyn Lopez - Guatemala
Honduras Erika Lizeth Ramirez - 1st runner up
Belize Melina Diaz - best costume
2000 - Sandra Glower Solis - El Salvador
Mexico Valeria de Anda Gonzalez - 1st runner up
El Salvador - winner "Piel Coppertone"
Mexico - best costume
1999 - Denise Zarahid Guzman - Mexico
El Salvador Marcela Eugenia Godoy Mancia - 1st runner up
Belize Vanya Vasques - winner 'Piel Copperton'
1998 - Astrid Ramirez - Guatemala
Honduras Dania Prince - 1st runner up
Honduras - winner of 'Piel Coppertone' and Miss Photogenic
1997 - Carol Aquino - Guatemala
Belize Gaylene Desiree Dawson - 1st runner up
El Salvador Angela Maria Rodriguez - Miss Amity
1996 - Maria del Socorro Retolaza Ulloa - Mexico
El Salvador Carmen Yesenia Rodriguez - 1st runner up
1998 Reina de la Costa Maya
1997 Reina de la Costa Maya
1996 Reina de la Costa Maya