Tryp Habana Libre hotel. A classic in Havana
Previously named Habana Hilton Hotel the birth of this Havana icon occurred in 1958, when Conrad Hilton himself came to Cuba for the inauguration. It is a hotel with a prominent history, prestige and a source of pride and sentimental value for Cubans.
This eye catching structure is situated in the popular Vedado district, right at the crossing of the 23 and M streets –one of the most transited areas in the city- . This privileged position in the city’s skyline 500 metres from Havana’s Malecón and 5 km from the historic city centre places the hotel near the University of Havana, the famous Coppelia ice cream parlour, ministries, businesses, shops, cinemas and other important sites. Many consider this to be the best placed hotel in Havana and definitely one of the more cosmopolitan and centric.
This benchmark building at the time of its opening was the biggest and tallest hotel in Latin America. Its modern looking 1950s architecture has turned it into a classic visible virtually from every spot in the western part of the city as it still is one of the tallest buildings in the capital.
For the Cuban people it’s a symbol of the revolution as it is indissolubly linked to the history of the country. In 1959 when Fidel Castro entered Havana he lodged at this hotel for a time period of three months turning it into the Revolutions’ headquarters. From there, he pronounced speeches, gave interviews, etc. His room has been preserved and can be visited by hotels guests and day-visitors.
After the political impasse between the United States and the revolutionary government this hotel was nationalized in 1960 and renamed as “Habana Libre hotel” (Havana Free hotel) embodying the liberation struggle.
It’s also very close to their hearts because it became the people’s hotel as it focused on national clients following the interruption of incoming American tourists, so for the first time working class people were allowed in and treated just like any other guest.
It housed the soviet embassy for some time and in 1974 it refocused on international tourists, becoming a reference for international personalities such as Valentina Tereskova, (first female cosmonaut), Salvador Allende (president of Chile at the time), artists Liz Taylor, Sara Montiel, Mario Moreno and many others.
The front part has an original décor from renowned Cuban artist Amelia Peláez, adding a touch of elegance. Stepping inside there is a collection of Cuban art paintings and sculptures coupled with Cuban fashion designer catwalks that are regularly carried out.
It’s a Four Star urban hotel, 25 floor tower with 572 rooms recommended for honeymoons, meetings and events. There is a Premium room floor with exclusive services and facilities that offers special care, tranquillity and privacy.
It is centred on conventions and entertainment, there are spacious lobbies with access to art galleries, swimming pool, bars and a buffet, shopping centre, “Casa del Habano” Cigar Lounge and Turquino party hall.
Its ample convention areas, polyvalent halls, a business centre and alternative locations for parties and banquettes make it ideal for hosting events. It has hosted big international events such as the “José Raúl Capablanca International Chess Tournament”, it served as the International Press Centre during president Obama’s visit in 2016, harboured the Pan-American Cocktail Championship among others.
Equipped with 10 multi-purpose rooms (1 flexible), 2 convention areas and alternative locations, such as the swimming pool, etc. Lobby for groups on the ground floor and second floor. Formats accommodating from 15 up to 900 people.
The rooms are spacious with balconies from which you can enjoy sublime views of the city and the sea.
For dinning there is a varied range of cuisine with 11 choices, 3 of them being à la carte restaurants and as a plus there is live music in some restaurants at night, there are also 3 bars and cafeterias.
While here make sure you try out the delicious “Adan y Eva” cocktail, this drink sure to make your stay unforgettable is an absolute must. It was invented in this hotel by barman Sergio Ramírez and it´s one of the best rum based cocktails in Havana having won first prize in the 2003 Seville Classic World Cocktail Making Championship.