Cabo’s First Chess Tournament

Started by a well known and beloved musician


Local musician Mauri Acuna is well known to Cabo San Lucas Gringos. He plays guitar on his own and several other instruments with local groups. He plays to the expat crowd in Tanga, Sancho's Cabo Cantina, and anywhere else he can get a gig. Another of his passions is chess, and he’s posted online his ambition of holding a Cabo San Lucas Chess Tournament.

Most peple who frequent downtown Cabo know Mauri, at least by sight, because he plays at several venues around town, among them Tanga Tanga and Cabo Cantina


Chess has its origins in India, in the 6th century, making chess one of the oldest games that is still played. We said one of the oldest, we know Go is 2500 years old.

It is also believed the Persians created a more modern version of chess, so now they’ve dibs’d it as their invention.

Mauri says, “I posted a photo of the chess board on Facebook, and almost immediately, seven of my friends wanted to participate in this tournament. One of them, my friend Peñuelas, owner of Los Corrales restaurant, is an avid fan of the game, and said that we could use tables at her restaurant to host the first edition of The Juanito Memorial Chess Tournament.''

The tournament is named in honor of Juan Ramon Tatemura who passed away from esophageal cancer in 2015 at the age of 40. Juanito as he was known, owned Cabo Lounge, a bar very popular with the expats.

"Because everyone has a career and jobs during the day and all week, we chose Saturday, February 10, as the date for this exciting first edition event,''' added Acuna. They used serious, international rules.

"When I first heard about it, I said yes, right away,'' Leo Poblete told us. He originally hails from Arizona and has been playing chess for more than 16 years

The first victorious tournament winner was Ernesto Valdes. The tourney was best two out of three games and featured 12 players. All of them Mexican. Of the four ex pat Gringos invited to play, none of them showed up.

Mauri Acuna plans to hold another, similar event, during the spring season at the same Los Corrales Restaurant and Cantina, inviting the very same enthusiastic contestants and anyone else who wants to sign up. Talk to Mauri Acuna at any of his performances or call him at (624) 156-0983.