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Inaugurated in 1931, the Tropicana cabaret, which has hosted Benny Moré, Nat King Cole, Jack Nicholson and ‘Lucky’ Luciano, among others, can accommodate 1,400 people and 200 dancers performing all the popular dances of Cuba in a Las Vegas-style show.
The dancers are beautiful and the costumes, choreography and numbers are excellent.
However, the food is more than mediocre, the show is a bit long and the place is invariably very touristy.
No substantial reforms have been adopted, and the basic formula has remained the same for years.
72 y 41, Marianao
Le Parisien is located in the Hotel Nacional and shares the richness of its history.
The show is much less pretentious than Tropicana’s and has fewer dancers, hence its intimate and welcoming atmosphere.
The dancers are very beautiful and the costumes, choreographies and numbers are excellent.
We advise you to leave before midnight, before the actor’s act and the start of the disco music.
Hôtel Nacional, Vedado
Hotel Cohíba, Vedado
This is where Vincent Vega would come to drink a $10 milkshake in Havana, and even if you can’t sit inside the Chevy, Pontiac or Buick, these cars on display here bring the chic touch of the 50s.
Not surprisingly, in the case of a facility located inside the Meliá Cohiba, the Havana Café is a quality space that offers impeccable service, even if the pompously Americanized gastronomic offerings are not up to Melia’s standard.
When the best Cuban orchestras, such as Van Van and the Charanga Habanera, perform there, the Havana Café is the best option and the cues form long before the opening.
Club de Jazz Café
Quiet, sophisticated and very cold because of the air conditioning, the Jazz Café is not only an excellent place to listen to some of Cuba’s best jazz performers – including Chucho Valdés – but also to converse in a pleasant atmosphere.
The gastronomy there is correct and the prices are very affordable.
- 1ra y Paseo, Vedado
Club de Jazz : La Zorra y el Cuervo
This box was named after the famous fable of the crow and the fox.
The facility – located in the basement – is accessed through a red telephone box made in the UK. Famous bands, both Cuban and foreign, come on stage at 10:30 pm. Intimate and intense atmosphere.
- 23 y O, Vedado
Bolero : El Gato Tuerto
Closed during the 90s, El Gato Tuerto reopened a few years ago.
Decorated in postmodern Art Deco style, the box, which is usually crowded, is the perfect place to listen to good boleros.
Connoisseurs usually go there. The pleasure will not be complete for non-smokers.
- O e/ 21 y 19, Vedado
Bar : La Taberna
This micro-brewery (a semi-public company between Austria and Cuba) almost only serves beer.
Located in the Old Square, beautifully renovated, it is the perfect setting to enjoy a Cuban “cerveza”.
Grilled chicken and pork are nothing extraordinary, but after five mugs they become a treat for the palate.
- Plaza Vieja, Vieille-Havane
To dance : Café Cantante / Delirio Habanero
These two addresses are part of the complex of the Theatre Nacional on Revolution Square.
Although you can dance in both of them, we recommend that you first visit the Café Cantante, in the basement, and then the Delirio, one of the few establishments in the city open until 5 in the morning.
The simple decor and its basement location do not prevent the “singing” café from attracting the best salsa groups of the moment.
To dance : Turquino
An absolutely chic site. This discotheque, located on the twenty-fifth floor of the Hotel Habana Libre, offers the best view of Havana.
The windows are like a wall, and a retractable roof revealing the starry sky: the decor is certainly that of a discotheque, the glasses are expensive and the atmosphere is not really authentic, but the view is always pleasant. It’s worth it at least once.
- 25th floor of Hotel Habana Libre, Vedado
To dance : Casa de la Música
Currently, Havana has two music houses. In general, Miramar’s clientele is more elegant and the “matinees” attract a crowd that prefers dancing rather than sitting down to watch and drink.
If you like to dance salsa, look no further.
You’ll return several times. When the most popular groups perform there, the price of admission goes up considerably, but the frenzy of the crowd makes it an unforgettable experience.
- Miramar and Galiano
Bar : Café Paris
Obispo y San Ignacio, Old Havana
Café Paris, which some people think is as Parisian as Middlesbrough, remains one of the few places in Old Havana where tourists rub shoulders with other tourists and Havanese.
Main attraction: Café Paris looks authentically Cuban and, true or false, its small and full bar, with an incredible band, maintains its frank popularity.
Friday Night House Party
Look for the Friday night party, the perfect opportunity to meet the trendy young people of Havana.
The seat changes every week. Last year it took up residence at the Morro Fortress, the Copa Room at the Hotel Riviera and the bar above the Karl Marx Theatre, among others.
- Morro-Cabaña Complex