Like its pastel-coloured streets and vivacious music, Havana, the capital city of Cuba, reverberates with a pulsating energy and a seductive charm like no other. The occasional unforgiving hot weather is outplayed by a kaleidoscope of architectural styles; of structures that beautifully blend the past with the present; of vintage cars that ply the roads like the bustling Paseo del Prado; of Habaneros dancing the night away to the beat of mambo, rumba or salsa.
Condé Nast Traveler’s former editor-in-chief Pilar Guzmán describes it as “a place where art and music not only prevail, but are irrepressible. Beautiful and tragic, elegant and crumbling, hopeful and destitute”. To which the French journalist Adolphe Granier de Cassagnac agrees, “No other city I know can compare to Havana. Havana has a look, a colour, a sound all its own: seen by day it has a rare grandeur, seen by night it is mysterious and poetic.”