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The Mercado – International Drive

The Mercado

The Mercado was a lively and vibrant destination frequented by 1000s of tourists and locals alike with the free nightly entertainment, dining and shopping. The free entertainment in the outdoor courtyard and Blazing Piano’s Red Hot Rock n Roll Piano Bar, made it seem similar to the original Lake Buena Vista Shopping Village and Pleasure Island, in a way.  Our family loved Blazing Pianos because you could bring kids and the free nightly outdoor entertainment.

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This commercial from 1993 highlights the shopping and dining and entertainment that was a nightly occurrence. VIEW

The Mercado Marketplace declined over the years and finally closed. This article in 2006 paints a very sad picture of what remained when the article was published.  READ

WATCH this video with images of the Mercado in 2007 with some of the businesses marked for demolition. Read the notes and comments, too.

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Comments to “The Mercado – International Drive”

  1. AJ Harrison says:

    I wish more photos and Videos existed of The Mercado, probably my favorite ever place in Orlando, as well as Belz.

    • Kim P says:

      Greetings AJ! So glad you shared your memories of The Mercado with Orlando Memory! We loved the dueling Piano Bar at Mercado and the free entertainment. Perhaps someone will post home movies from Mercado one day and we can link to them! Until then, we’ll hold on to our memories!

  2. Mary says:

    HI! I was hoping you could help me track down the name of a restaurant that used to be off I drive near the Mercado.

    It was an Italian restaurant in a strip mall, that when you walked in there were cold cases to one side where they had deli items then the restaurant part was separated by a fake lattice wall. The last time I was there was in the 90s

    • Kim P says:

      Hello Mary! Thank you for visiting Orlando Memory. There were two Italian restaurants in that area in 1990: Bergamos which, according to the Real Yellow Pages, was at Mercado, and Carmenti’s Pizza and Italian Restaurant on International Drive not far from Mercado.

      • David Watson says:

        There was Also DiVino’s restaurant in the Mercado. I know, I worked there. A great italian restaurant which was the sister restaurant to Bergamo’s

        • Kim P says:

          Thanks for sharing your memories of DiVino’s restaurant with Orlando Memory! We hope you will find more memories to share with us!

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