The Hotel Nacional de Cuba has more than sixty years of history and still keeps its prestige among those belonging to GRAN CARIBE group. Considered as a CLASSIC FOR DISTINCTION, it was opened on December 30th, 1930. In 1992 it went through a general restoration preserving all the splendor of its eclectic architecture as a result of a mixture of Art Deco features with modern influences of that time.

With its privileged location in the middle of Vedado, the center of Havana, it stands on a hill just a few meters from the sea, and offers a great view of the Havana Harbor; the seawall and the city.

The Hotel stands out due to its refined elegance and its ancient splendor, which since 1930 has attracted a large number of personalities from the arts, science and politcs, such as British Prime Minister Winston Churchill, artists Frank Sinatra, Ava Gardner, Johnny Weismuller, Maria Félix, Jorge Negrete, and scientist Alexander Flemming.

The hotel's 457 rooms, 15 suites, and Presidential Suite are conveniently prepared and equipped for maximum comfort, while their location offers a magnificent view of the city.

Hotel History
On the coastal salient of Punta Brava, on the Taganana hill, toward the far end of the San Lazaro cove --customary site of pirate landings--, rises the Hotel Nacional de Cuba since December 30, 1930, the “flagship” of Gran Caribe.

During the 19th century, the hill on which the hotel stands held the famous battery of Santa Clara. The “Ordoñez” cannon, one of the largest of its time, still lies in the hotel’s gardens. On the headland of Punta Brava, Corregidor Don Luis Aguilar chastised the British during the seige and assault of Havana. The hotel’s most famous and luxurious restaurant is named after him.

The project and construction of this majestic building was completed in two years by the US companies McKim, Mead & White and Purdy Henderson Co.

Visitors are captivated by the galleries of the gardens that recollect monastic cloisters of Moorish-Spanish arcades, the main hall resembling three parallel aisles of a Medieval church, or the simulated beams of the ceiling that recall an old Catalan monastery with Arab reminiscences. Its eclectic architecture combining Art-Deco, neoclassic and neocolonial designs, the handsome Apartment of the Republic with its direct entrance and the necessary privacy for state guests, and its comfortable Presidential Suite have, time and again, attracted many distinguished personalities from the fields of art, literature, politics, commerce, science and business.

Among its first illustrious guests were artists, actors and writers such as Johny Weissmuller, Buster Keaton, Jose Mujica, Jorge Negrete, Agustin Lara, Tyrone Power, Romulo Gallegos, Errol Flyn, Marlon Brando and the famous Ernest Hemingway, who donated a blue fish specimen to the “Sirena” bar. The guestlist includes well known Italian American gangsters Santos Traficante, Meyer Lansky, Lucky Luciano and Frank Costello. The hotel’s reputation as a deluxe host is backed by patrons such as Winston Churchill, the Duke and Duchess of Windsor, scientist Alexander Flemming, and innumerable Ibero American Heads of State and European monarchs.

The hotel was refurbished in the late 50’s, when all the comforts that make it competitive were added without altering the original layout.

The protagonism of the Hotel Nacional de Cuba goes on, welcoming distinguished businessmen and ordinary folk from all over the world, hosting important international events and still remaining that “Enchanted Castle” that Alejo Carpentier spoke of, as dazzling as it was on its opening night.

 

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