Chichen Is Hot News?

September 28th, 2006 by ejalbright

Chichen Itza has been in the news quite a bit recently, but for diametrically opposed (and, I would argue, politically opposed) reasons.

Governor Patricio Patron Laviada and his Secretary of Tourism Carolina Cardenas recently went on a blitz of New York City to promote Chichen Itza to be named one of the new Seven Wonders of the World. Chichén Itzá is one of 21 finalists for the “New 7 Wonders,” the brainchild of Swiss adventurer Bernard Weber ( This is an international campaign to name a new seven wonders of the world, as all but one of the original Seven Wonders of the World no longer exists.

The governor’s trip to New York was covered by the mainstream Yucatan media, specifically Diario de Yucatan. At the same time, the newspaper of the “loyal opposition,” Por Esto, was publishing an expose that described how former Banamex president Robert Hernandez Ramirez (who the newspaper several years ago accused of being involved in drug smuggling to the US) had purchases several ejidos around Chichen Itza for peanuts and was poised to build resorts and other amenities to tourists. The fear, as revealed in an article today (), is that Chichen will become more privatized than it already is.

But the biggest news, which has been reported in Spanish language press around the world, is the scandal of all scandals. Thalia Sodi, the Mexican pop star married to Mariah Carey’s ex-husband, illegally had pictures taken of herself posing in Chichen Itza at locations currently closed to the public. How did she accomplish this feat? We can be certain that her sister, who until recently was director of Chichen Itza for INAH, had nothing to do with it. More about this tomorrow …

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