Foro Sol in Mexico City, set up for a Bruno Mars concert in February. (Courtesy Foro Sol)

Mexico city’s foro Sol sits atop our end-of-year Top Stops chart for 2018 after reporting total tickets sold of 1,100,481 over 16 shows for a gross of $56,560,706. Visits from Electric Daisy Carnival and Bruno Mars in February were atop the venue’s list of highest-grossing shows.
Jose Luis Esparza took a moment to talk about the success of the venue, which opened in 1993 near the Mexico City International Airport and is operated by Grupo CIE, and what it’s doing to keep the good times going.

What factors make Foro Sol such a powerhouse as a live music venue?
I think first of all the story of the venue. … Also, the capacity — it can hold over 64,000 fans — the size of the stage and the best technology, the fact that it has a (Formula One) racetrack  inside make it unique. But the most important is all the international talent that have performed all these years.

Talk a little about the current market for live music in Mexico and where you fit in.
OCESA is one of the three most important promoters worldwide. We operate venues and promote concerts, family shows and music festivals in Mexico and Colombia.

Festivals are an important part of your lineup. How do you bring them in? Do you participate in creating festivals for your venue?
We try to use the spaces the best possible way to provide an amazing experience for the fans. Yes, for over 20 years we have held one of the first festivals in Mexico. We have improved over the years in mixing music with experience, such as better distribution of the spaces, brand experience activations, good food court zones, resting areas, cashless payment and better VIP zones.

Artists like the Rolling Stones and Roger Waters continue to return to your venue tour after tour. What do they say about what keeps them coming back?
Foro Sol is an important venue. With our experienced operations and production team we try to bring the best experience to our artists and audience. On the other hand, our artists always comment that the Mexican public is one of the warmest in the world.

What kinds of premium seating do you have available for concerts? What improvements have you made lately at the stadium in seating, food, etc.?
For concerts we create the suites where you can enjoy the show in a private space with food and beverage included, a designated parking spot and special entrance.