Hello Havana!

By Jenn Rose Smith
Old Havana Inspiration Board | Camille Styles

Old Havana Inspiration Board | Camille Styles

Amidst the hub-bub of 4th of July weekend, a small group of Cuban New Yorkers celebrated a historic moment on Friday when they boarded Jet Blue’s first direct flight from NYC to Havana. Thanks to President Obama’s decision to renew diplomatic ties with Cuba, a holiday in Havana may soon go from fantasy to real possibility for some Americans. Personally, I’m dying to see the forbidden island that has always loomed large in my imagination. The architecture, the music, and the cars. Oh my goodness, the cars! For decades since the embargo, Cubans have kept classic American cars from the 50s and 60s on the roads and running. “Yank Tanks” or “máquinas” are what they call them and supposedly there are over 60,000 of them still on the road. The architecture of Old Havana is also incredibly unchanged, making it a place that looks like nowhere else on earth. I’m dreaming of sipping a mojito at the Hotel Florida and wandering through it’s palm filled courtyards. I’m also excited about meeting Cuban people, and hopefully greeting them as they enter the United States as visitors as well. In the meantime, I’ll be brushing up on Hemingway and looking for the perfect summer dress. Would you ever travel to Cuba? Are you worried that American tourism will change Cuba for the worse? (If so, I recommend this thoughtful article from The Paris Review). My answers: meet me in Havana, and let’s be gracious guests.

image sources {row one} period bustle via sydney stewart, palm leaf via arnhem, yellow wallpaper via audrey medy, photo of afro cuban actress candita quintana, ford via gleems {row two} green room by andrew moore, man in white shirt via mark d sikes, bar via rue mag, girl on tiles by nonda cousticos {row three} farmacia francesa triolet museo farmacéutoico de matanzas cuba by carlos alberto fleitasvogue 1959, palm leaf wallpaper from the 501 union,  cigar matchbook photographed by aaron delesie, courtyard of the hotel florida in cuba by francois swanepoel