For Corona Extra beer drinkers, the holiday season is synonymous with a decorated palm tree on the beach.
If you grew up in the 90s, chances are you’ve witnessed this scene on TV.
A single cabana sits alongside the ocean at night, appearing from the outside to be just the right size for a vacationing couple. Ten seconds of silence are broken by a whistling rendition of “O Tannenbaum,” also known as the music to “O Christmas Tree.” Suddenly, one palm tree shrouded in darkness illuminates, covered in colorful lights. As the sky grows darker, a “Feliz Navidad” greeting from Corona appears in the bottom right corner of the screen.
You'd believe this commercial was filmed in a calm serene Mexican beach village. In reality, the area that the crew was working in was really marshy & filled with alligators. According to Mike Rogers, “there were alligators swimming right where [they] wanted to put the camera.”
“So we had to have alligator wranglers scoop the alligators and keep them out of the way. The cameraman was petrified, so we promised him he could go out there and set up the shot, and then escape.”
Despite nature’s threat of a potentially bloody end from the scaled reptile habitants of Mexico’s Yucatan region, Corona Extra’s "O Tannenpalm” commercial didn’t just get completed—it became an iconic staple of holiday TV programming.
The ad has been running for 30 years now, appearing every year from Nov. 1 through December, some “O Tannenpalm” viewers have literally grown up watching the commercial—and now buy the beer to go with it.
In case you've never seen the longest running beer ad in history, below is a YouTube recording for you to enjoy. After all, any production that resembles a plot straight out of an 80's creature horror movie & requires alligator wranglers deserves to be cheered for 🍻 ¡Feliz Navidad! 🌴🎄