‘Sensual, surreal, and seductive, Havana is simply sensational. To call the city “unique” is no cliché. Arguably Latin America’s best-preserved capital city, Havana is one of the oldest, grandest and most seductive cities in the Americas. It glories in historic import.’
Christopher Baker, author of the Moon Guide to Cuba
If Havana was a woman, perhaps she would not like you asking her age later this month (November 16) when she turns 495. You could at least reply with a straight face that she gets better with age. This issue is dedicated to my beautiful Havana. From the colours of the city to its architecture, its renovation and renaissance in Old Havana under the stewardship of Eusebio Leal and finally to the gregarious and unique habaneros who really give the city its style, its character and its life.
In the Last Summer of Salsa award-winning British writer Kester Aspden transforms himself from a patón (someone with two left feet who can’t dance) into a salsero. Thank you Kester. If you are feeling energetic this month, don’t miss Havana’s marathon on November 16 (7am start by the Capitolio). If you don’t want to do the full two laps, try the 10km. It is a good atmosphere and a nice way to see the city early in the morning. Fine, stay in bed—I am not convinced either!
November sees the start of Havana’s packed winter cultural calendar. From art to photography, theatre and dance, November really does have something for everyone and is a reminder of just what a cosmopolitan, cultured and simply great place Havana is. The International Ballet Festival continues until November 7. The Lucas Music Video Awards are Cuba’s most prestigious and a chance to see who’s hot in the music video medium—think pop, reggaeton, rock and Buena Vista, too! And Nov 15-23 sees the interesting Festival Internacional de Música Contemporánea take center stage.
Do check out our expanded Havana Guide, which is growing to accommodate the new bars, restaurants and casas particulares that continue to spring forth adding vitality and energy to Havana’s entertainment and hospitality scene.
November 2014 Highlights (Havana, unless stated)
- Oct 28-Nov 7, International Ballet Festival
- Nov 10-16, IBSEN Norwegian theatre week
- Nov 15-23, Festival Internacional de Música Contemporánea
- Nov 16, Marabana (7am start)
- Nov 16, Anniversary of the founding of Havana
- Nov 22-24, Lucas Video Music Awards
- Nov 27, Commemoration of the student martyrs
Thanks to all of our contributors, sponsors, partners and readers. Do please keep providing us with your feedback, comments and suggestions. All enquiries should be directed to Sophia Beckman at CubaAbsolutely@gmail.com. All the best. Viva Cuba!