Robaina's plantation

Friday 27 June 2014

Art In Cuba (A Pictorial) Havana May 2014

                These are just some random shots I took in hotel lobbies, restaurants and other public places in Havana. No names, no titles, just pictures of the Artwork. I'm always amazed at how you can be almost anywhere in Cuba and be surrounded by Art....and most of it is quite good, of course depending on your taste. I hope you enjoy the pictures as much as I did taking them.

Thursday 19 June 2014

La Terraza (Restaurant Review) Havana

                 Some of my readers come to my blog for information on new restaurants that open in Havana. Although 'La Terraza' is not a new restaurant, it is a restaurant I haven't been to in many years. I enjoyed it the last time I visited but I hadn't been to the top floor where the emphasis is on the grill. It was mid-afternoon, I figured a good time to find space on the patio...and I was right. We got a table overlooking Prado Street, a wonderful view. This is one of the buildings that is run by the 'Centro Asturiano' but I'm not quite sure if they actually own the building itself. Another restaurant I frequent and one of my favourites in another building run by this group is 'Castropol'. They tend to have better food and service than the average place.
                  As I said, the emphasis is on the grill and for the main course we chose the mixed grill plate which consisted of; Chicken, Pork Chop, Lobster Tail, Shrimp Skewer and Filet of Fish. The appetizer was a no-brainer, we chose the Pork Ribs. We were disappointed with some of the main course, the Lobster Tail and Filet were stinky and tasted bad....I think it gave me a touch of diarrhea, good thing I only took one bite. The Ribs were so good we ordered another. We only ordered the one main as recommended by our waiter, the dish was so big that two people could share it. While we were there we saw a plate go to a table which looked absolutely delectable, the leg of lamb, I have to come back for that. The Pork Chop on the Mix Grill plate was the best I've had in Cuba. I know it's only a Pork Chop but I love pork chops....and the Chicken was good as well. The Shrimp were fine but a hassle to peel when they're not large...even though these were slightly larger than the norm in Cuba. Because of the mishap I had with the fish I won't be ordering this plate again. I will be sticking with grilled meats or as I said, the Leg of Lamb....I noticed Rabbit on the menu as well, something else I may try.
                  The service was fine and the ambiance perfect. I will come back and recommend it to others. As far as price goes, if you're like me and order...order...and order, it could get pricey for Cuba. After all was said and done, our bill with tip added was 90.75. Considering what we had and compared to my Country, I found that reasonable but I think some might find that expensive. But considering we had: cocktails to start, bottled water, a bottle of wine, appetizers, a main course with vegetables, coffee, 3 desserts and a pack of wasn't too bad. In Canada the bottle of wine and pack of cigarettes would be more than half that amount (add the tip and it would be 2/3 that amount).
                  Give this place a try but stay away from the fish...have the fish at 'El Templete', my favourite spot for seafood in Havana.

La Terraza
Prado no.309 esq. Virtudes
La Habana Vieja
Tel. (535) 817-8778

Monday 16 June 2014

Bacardi Building (Havana)

                  The Bacardi Building in Havana, as the name implies, was once owned by the Bacardi Company when it existed in Cuba. The twelve story Art Deco building was completed in 1930 and at the time was the tallest building in Havana. After the revolution Bacardi left the island and the building was used for offices. As with many of the buildings in Cuba, time has not be good to them and many have fallen into disrepair, including the Bacardi Building. Renovations began in 2001 and were completed in 2003 but it seems to me that they're still underway from time to time. I've tried to go to the top floor on several occasions through the last few years and was always told that they're under renovations. Recently a friend visited and told me he was allowed to go up. A few months later, last month, when I tried again, I was told once again that it was under renovations. Well, not this time, I bribed the attendant and went up anyway. Just as I had thought, the views of the city are wonderful. Below are some of the pictures I took while I was there. I hope you enjoy them.