Minarete - Tijuana, Mexico
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member Metro2
N 32° 30.972 W 117° 00.324
11S E 499492 N 3597654
Quick Description: This minaret is actually a chimney for a former incinerator and was once part of a large casino and resort complex in Tijuana.
Location: Baja California, Mexico
Date Posted: 3/22/2012 8:36:00 AM
Waymark Code: WME1NW
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member QuesterMark
Views: 2

Long Description:
This minaret is the remnant of a resort and casino and has become something of an icon for the city of Tijuana. This tourism website (visit link) informs us:

"During the 1920's, the U.S. Prohibition Liquor Laws made this border city an obvious magnet to liquor thirsty tourists from California and beyond. It soon offered casino gaming, horse racing, shopping, a world famous health spa, and Caesar Salads.
In the 1930's born Agua Caliente in Tijuana, Mexico. A lavish resort built by 3 American gangsters (Ben "Bugsy" Siegel was supposedly involved) and a Mexican Governor "Abelardo Rodriguez", Agua Caliente opened in 1928. Bungalows, waterfalls, several golf courses, gourmet cuisine, Agua Caliente was like a small town unto itself. Agua Caliente also had a racetrack operation for a while, opening in 1930. This was before there was a Las Vegas. Movie moguls and stars of stage and screen would take the jaunt down to Agua Caliente for the weekend and play the horses, golf, swim, and just be seen. More than 80,000 people attended the races there every weekend. Celebrities who played the Agua Caliente Casino or started their careers include; Jimmy Durante, Rita Hayworth, Tom Mix, Oliver Hardy and Fred Astaire.Charlie Chaplin, Clark Gable, Rita Hayworth, Glenn Ford and Spencer Tracy and Al Capone were guests.

The casino did tremendous business, but was closed down by the New Mexican president Lazaro Cardenas in 1935 and was replaced by 5 schools. Many Tunnels were found in the casino that were used by Al Capone and his people to cross liquor to U.S. and are actually closed."

This website (visit link) also explains that the minaret is an icon because it is a remnant of the city's past as a gambling and resort mecca for Americans:

"In 1928, the Agua Caliente Touristic Complex was opened, including hotel, spa, dog-track, private airport, golf course and gambling casino. A year later, the new Agua Caliente Racetrack joined the complex. During the eight years it operated, the Agua Caliente hotel, casino and spa achieved a near mythical status, with Hollywood stars and gangsters flying in and playing. Rita Hayworth was discovered there. Musical nightclub productions were broadcast over the radio. A singer known as "la Faraona" got shot in a love-triangle and gave birth to the myth of a beautiful lady ghost. Remnants of the Agua Caliente casino can be seen in the outdoor swimming pool and the "minarete" (actually a former incinerator chimney) nearby the southern end of Avenida Sanchez Taboada, on the grounds of what is now the Lazaro Cardenas educational complex.

In 1935, President Cardenas decreed an end to gambling and casinos in Baja California and the Agua Caliente complex faltered, then closed. It was eventually reopened as a school."

The newer nearby Caliente Racetrack no longer features horse racing...but reportedly continues to have greyhound races and the complex now operates again as a Casino.

The school doesn't seem to have an entrance for the public... but the minaret can be seen from the parking lot of the Centro Comercial Minarete strip mall where the coordinates were taken.
Type: Remnant

Fee: no

can be viewed from outside the grounds 24/7; not sure how one acquires permission to be on the grounds.

Related URL: Not listed

Visit Instructions:
Original photographs showing additional views of the Ruin/Remnant or even just its current condition are encouraged. Please describe your visit, especially if no additional photos are available. Did you like the Ruin or Remnant? What prompted you to see the Ruin or Remnant?
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Recent Visits/Logs:
Date Logged Log  
Metro2 visited Minarete - Tijuana, Mexico 3/11/2012 Metro2 visited it