The BPM Music Festival: Mexico 2012

BPM Music Festival 2012

Over a bottle of tequila & a bucket of beers, ask two friends from Canada came up with the idea of a music festival. Six months later, with limited support from sponsors or the town, co-creators Craig Pettigrew and Phillip Anthony Pulitano produced their first intimate, raw and organic festival known as BPM. Not many people believed such an event could take place. However, after it was delivered the support and success grew exponentially.

This is the second time I return to the beautiful Mayan Riviera in the city of Playa Del Carmen, Mexico. What started out as a music industry-networking event for the elite has evolved into an international union of electronic music lovers, DJs, producers, party go-ers, party throwers and their friends. BPM now welcomes each New Year in the best way possible- ten days on the coastlines of turquoise warm waters, sun and a line-up of the leading global DJs and record labels.

2010 was the first year I set out on my journey to Playa. In 2010, the BPM festival began on January 1, so after the ball dropped in New York, my friends and I met at the airport; half asleep, half dazed, some just off from their work in nightlife, suitcases full of clothes for all occasions, and a positive attitude. This was the year I discovered Kool Beach, The Cube Guys, mastering how to dance on a bed, and an adopted tradition.

BPM Music Festival 2012

During the day, I split my time between sun bathing and dancing at Kool Beach- a lavish terrace pool party over looking the beach and one kick ass way to start the day for most BPM attendees and music professionals. The parties here begin at brunch time and span till about 8 or 9 PM. You can begin your mornings laying on a bed and sipping pina coladas while DJs start their set, have breakfast on the deck at the restaurant adjacent to the beach club, or order by the ocean for a more tranquil start to the day.

Jamie Jones at the BPM Music Festival 2012

In 2010 I took in all of what BPM had presented– was introduced to Nik Nik, The Cube Guys and Cedric Gervais at Kool Beach; danced to Victor, Guy Gerber and Behrouz at La Santanera, and closed out an epic week with Dubfire, Steve Lawler and Steve Angello from Swedish House Mafia at Blue Parrot.

BPM Music Festival 2012

Unlike other music festivals which overpack their calendars to make your head spin, BPM utilizes a more organized and minimal approach. The creator’s initial idea for the festival was to throw a single supporting party taking place each day, however as popularity grew and more people attended it was hard to keep all attendees under one roof. Consequently, directors of BPM added a second event at an additional venue for the same night- the only real difference I noticed in 2012. All details can be found in the BPM Passport, which is available free of charge at all BPM sponsored establishments. Which party to attend should be a decision based on individual music preference. Regardless, directors continue to gather chart-topping talent so the quality of all parties is guaranteed to deliver good music, good vibes. In addition, you are free to jump around throughout the night. The venues are always in walking distance, or at most, a short cab ride away.


To make things less complicated, BPM now offers the option to purchase a 3, 7 or 10 day VIP wristband which offers entry and re-entry to all day and night time events; eliminating the time you waste on waiting in line or paying at the door (prices are subject based on number of days you purchase/single party entry goes for about $50).

In 2012 my experience was a little different than my first. One of my favorite characteristics of this festival (aside from the music) is the opportunity to meet and establish friendships with quality people from around the world. This year I was fortunate enough to spend time hanging at villa parties on the beach as well as a friend’s penthouse party overlooking Kool Beach- a very talented DJ, Antonio Piacquadio. This year I was able to appreciate BPM more for what its truly worth: I was able to see how DJs are before and after performances, how supportive they are of one another, and how friendships blend and develop between people all over the world.

Steve Angello at the BPM Music Festival 2012

This year’s lineup consisted of more renowned DJs such as Art Department, Jamie Jones, Damian Lazarus, Marco Carola and Richie Hawtin. Lee Foss, Danny Tenaglia, John Digweed, Steve Lawler and Lee Burridge were also be added to the list. As well as returning DJs such as Behrouz, Antonio Piacquadio, Nik Nik and more.
 The BPM Music Festival 2012

While in Mexico, I do suggest you take advantage of alternative options Playa Del Carmen has to offer. Playa is located in the perfect location and there are many opportunities for day trips to explore Mayan ruins, snorkel, swim in a cenote (underground cave), or explore the charming island of Isla Mujeres. The town is small enough where you can walk just about anywhere and purchase just about anything necessary for the next ten days.

 The BPM Music Festival 2012

As predicted, a music festival taking place on the Caribbean Sea is nothing short of amazing. Discovering BPM in its early stages, watching it grow, and celebrating its 5th year anniversary this year was an honor, and I’m already looking forward to next year.

Written by Nightlife Correspondent Pavlina Kovtsun

For more information on the BPM Music Festival, visit their website at


Sunday Funday

viral fashion 2011 nightlife restaurants night club new york city rocco ancarola lavo sundays

Even for nightlife revelers like me, view
to go hard-body on a Sunday night seems an impossible feat. To ensure that you have a party on hand for Sunday night (and for you to avoid thinking about on Monday’s dreaded commute), I introduce to you the Sunday Night Dinner Theater at LAVO.
A nightlife hybrid of restaurant and nightclub, the “Riviera Sunday Dinner Theater” at LAVO in Midtown Manhattan encompasses live theater with an interactive dining experience. A momentous three-course meal beautifully morphs into a glamorous dinner party, to say the least. By virtue of Sunday Funday, a.k.a. a Nightcrawler’s Sabbath, this Sunday soiree needn’t be overlooked.

Every Sunday night at LAVO, a different theme plays out: from the models to the music, Rocco Ancarola, a local celebrity of NYC nightlife and acclaimed party host, guises himself to the corresponding theme (i.e. Zorro, Che Guevara, the ‘Rocco’ Horror Picture Show, Bob Marley). Gregarious, animated, and a bit wacky are but few words to describe Rocco. He doesn’t just plan the party; he is the party…no matter what guise he hides behind.

viral fashion 2011 nightlife restaurants night club new york city rocco ancarola lavo sundays

The front bar area, which you’ll immediately walk into, also serves as a vestibule for the assemblage waiting to be seated. Beyond the bounds of the bar you’ll find the luxurious dining area, a congregation of patrons and servers. Although filled to capacity, the restaurant has an air of fast-paced turbulence; it does not at all feel chaotic or disorganized. It’s actually quite motivating…in the “lets get this post-dinner dance party started already” kind of way. The softly dim lighting and surrounding mirrors give the illusion of space, as well as the chance to check oneself out while meandering through the many tables.

Between 10pm and 11pm, the models begin frolicking and posing. They masquerade in their “Riviera” inspired outfits (or whatever outfit corresponds to the evening’s theme) amongst the rest of the glamourous crowd. My first night I was lucky enough to gauge the can-can theme, all clad in pink, for Breast Cancer Awareness Month. The second go-around it was the “Rocco Horror Picture Show” themed for Halloweekend (see our coverage here.)

viral fashion 2011 nightlife restaurants night club new york city rocco ancarola lavo sundays

LAVO’s Sunday night shindigs are extraordinarily underrated. Once the tables are cleared, the dance frenzy begins and the party experience becomes an interactive one (with props on the table!) Before you know it, you’re on top of a table or chair in a nightclub that welcomes that kind of exuberant behavior. This potentially haphazard form of fun is indeed a rare breed of party, but given the impending arrival of a case of the Mondays, it’s appropriate as an extension to your weekend festivities. So keep your party pants on and join the table dancing elite this Sunday at LAVO’s Sunday Night Dinner Theater esperienza.

P.S. Reservations recommended!

by Laura B.