Mazatlán, Mexico


Mazatlán, Mexico     Photo: Darlo Lopez-Mills/AP

PR Challenge: In 2010, there were more than 300 murders in Mazatlán, many of them beheadings. The city was once a spring break mecca; now it’s a stronghold of the Sinaloa Cartel, and the U.S. State Department is warning people to stay away.

In the Hot Seat: Glenn Sorrie, proprietor of the Casa de Leyendas bed-and-breakfast and Macaw’s restaurant and bar

The Spin: “Our lodging business is down, but our tavern business is actually up. The problem is getting people down here. Once tourists are here, they have a great time. I’m not going to say terrible things haven’t happened—the beheadings are very real—but tourists aren’t going to see that stuff. There’s evil in every city in the world, but the travel advisory has become a self-fulfilling prophecy. It’s killing us.”

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