Cuba Libre

Words by Nathalie Grainger Bradbury

01 July 2020

Join Paul Oakenfold on Quintessentially’s experiential trip to Havana

Each December, Art Basel Miami Beach draws in over 200 of the world’s leading galleries from North America, Latin America, Europe, Asia and Africa, all exhibiting important works from the masters of Modern and contemporary art, as well as the new generation of emerging stars. But there are also some great cultural delights to be enjoyed, just a few hundred miles off Miami’s coastline.

For Art Basel Miami Beach 2018, Quintessentially has harnessed all of its worldly expertise to create an immersive 24- and 48-hour journey through Havana’s cultural heritage.

Quintessentially members can pick their dates, starting from Wednesday 5th December or Friday 7th December, to gain insider access to key locations around Havana, the capital of Cuba, just an hour or so by plane from Miami.

As a Quintessentially guest on this experience, you’ll get to explore on foot the UNESCO World heritage site of Old Havana’s distinct neighbourhoods, guided by a private expert through the milestone creations that have contributed to Havana’s history, and which continue to inform modern-day Habanero living.

There are many highlights on the itinerary, not least the nocturnal agenda that will have you mingling at an exclusive meet and greet with Paul Oakenfold at Havana House - a venue designed by curator Pedro Alonzo and artist Kadir Lopez to showcase the best of Cuban and International Contemporary Street Art.

From there, you’ll be escorted in a convoy of classic American cars for dinner at Tierra, an industrial chic restaurant located in La Fabrica de Arte Cubano (FAC), the epicentre of Cuba’s cultural creation, entertainment, and nightlife. Fans of music are in for a treat after dinner, with VIP access to a unique line-up of live performances by headliner act Paul Oakenfold, supported by a host of Cuban and international music artists, and followed by an after-hours party across Havana’s hottest dance venues.

There’ll also be further opportunity to get the feel of a classic American car during a driving tour of the city, taking in Revolution Square, El Morro, Fifth Avenue, and a visit to the studio of Grammy-nominated percussionist Yissy Garcia & Banda Ancha, who will chart her energetic approach to ‘high-speed’ jazz.

Should you choose the 48-hour experience, there’ll be time for a rum and cigar tasting, when your sommelier will unpick the secrets of the Cuban cigar, its production process, and how to fully appreciate the pairing of Cuban rum and smoke. Add to this, rooftop martinis at La Guarida - the backdrop for the classic film Strawberry and Chocolate - and an expert tour with one of Cuba’s renowned architects through Havana’s hero sites, and a private viewing of Havana’s mansion houses.

Your home-from-home during your immersive cultural experience will be Gran Hotel Manzana Kempinski La Habana, set in the heart of Old Havana.

Claimed as the epicentre of arts and culture, Quintessentially has its pulse on all things Miami Art Basel. For insider info on unique experiences, please contact your Lifestyle Manager to learn more about Miami’s Art Week.

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