ACAPULCO, Mexico -- The black-and-white photos still hang in the faded Hotel Los Flamingos. Over there is the muscled star of "Tarzan," Johnny Weissmuller, who owned the hotel for a time during Acapulco's heyday. There's Maureen O'Sullivan. Tyrone Power. Errol Flynn. Fred MacMurray.
They all came, mixed booze in a coconut -- called it a Coco Loco.
When mortals gazed at Acapulco, they saw romance itself smiling back. So they came too. As did a fortress of high-rise hotels that packed the beach and diminished the very thing everyone was chasing.
Now, just as it hopes to regain some of its cachet, Acapulco is confronting more than the weight of history. The famed resort city has been the scene of vicious fighting among rival drug gangs that has killed more than 650 people in four years, the fifth-highest count for any Mexican city, according to government figures. The toll includes 30 men slain two weekends ago in and around the city. Fifteen of them were decapitated.