Style in Spades :: A Day in Havana

By Lauren Smith Ford
Kate Spade + Camille Styles | Photography by Wynn Myers

We didn’t even have to board a plane to find the feel (and the tastes) of Cuba’s vibrant Old Havana. When our friends at kate spade new york asked us to bring some of the pieces from their latest Havana-inspired collection to life, we knew just where to go. Camille and friends hopped in to a 1957 Rambler Custom for a road trip to San Antonio’s beautifully restored Hotel Havana where pan-Latin influences throughout the hotel pay tribute to its colorful Cuban namesake. Come along for our fun road trip!

photography by wynn myers

The gals arrive to the Hotel Havana which overlooks San Antonio’s iconic Riverwalk. The lush exterior sets the tone for the style of the hotel that captures the festive spirit of the Caribbean island city.

 madison ave. collection francis skirt, jayna sunglasses & laguna court caning adelaide alysha: mariella dress, harmony sunglasses, henry lane emmy & imelda heels camille: astor row palmero & idelisa heels  kendra: madison avenue laguna court luxe penelope, amara 2 sunglasseskarolina heels kim: forest broome street capriivana heelscedar street perforated small harmony & keeley sunglasses

The hotel was originally built in 1914. Visionary hotelier Liz Lambert of the famed Bunkhouse Group (Austin’s Hotel St. Cecilia and the Hotel San Jose and Marfa’s El Cosmico) revamped the historic spot and reopened it in 2010.

kendra: madison avenue laguna court luxe penelope & karolina heel camille: astor row palmero & idelisa heels kim: forest broome street capri & ivana heels alysha: mariella dress & imelda heels

The dapper gent and local style icon Mike Casey opens the door for Camille in his perfect seersucker suit.


Bag Envy — Kim is the master of bringing together unexpected pattern combinations in the most delightful way. On our day in Havana, kate spade new york’s cedar street perforated small harmony tote in surprise coral was the just the right pop of color.

Our art director Jennifer Rose Smith, clad in her the madison ave. collection goodwin dress, takes a call inside one of Havana’s uniquely decorated suites. A quintessential Havana piece, the smoke and mirrors corbin bag rests beneath her.

Ladies who lunch — the crew headed to Ocho for a Latin-infused menu in the stunning dining room that feels like you are inside just about the most chic bird cage in the world. Camille donned the structured silk mini dress in cubanelle and one of our favorite bags of the day, the madison avenue laguna court luxe penelope, rests beside her.


Ocho’s Huitlacoche Quesadillas with avocado and poblano salsa were one of the highlights of our meal overlooking the Riverwalk while the Shrimp and Crab Campachena with spicy Twice Baked Saltines was a close second. I recently purchased the rio wave metro watch (pictured right), but love every timepiece in this season’s collection.

Cook up some Huitlacoche Quesadillas of your own with this recipe from Ocho:1. Open your 15 oz can of Huitlacoche and small dice 1 serrano pepper. Place it into a skillet, sauté on low heat and reduce liquid by half.

2. Get two flour tortillas and lay them side by side. Grab your evenly portioned cheese mixture of Oaxaca cheese and Monterey Jack cheese. On one side, place a cup of your cheese mixture and on the other 2 tablespoons of your sautéed Huitlacoche.
3. Sandwich together and griddle each side on a lightly buttered cast iron skillet. Once cooked, you can enjoy it with a side of fresh Avocado and Poblano Salsa.

A close up view of the charming smoke and mirrors corbin bag.

Camille wearing the structured silk mini dress in cubanelle and the madison avenue collection my gem in havana short necklace. Alysha (in the gwendolyn dress) gab over post-lunch cafe con leches.

Then, it was time for a mojito making class with bartender Miguel.

The group saddled up to the marble-topped bar for all his tips on making the perfect Cuban cocktail.


The forest broome street capri and ivana heels (pictured left) with the ready to dance the night away imelda heels.

One of the key ingredients for today’s cocktail!

Shake it up with the Havana Mojito Recipe:
  • 3 lime wedges
  • 6-8 mint leaves
  • 1 1/2 oz Rum
  • 1 oz simple syrup
  • club soda
  1. In a cocktail shaker, muddle limes. Rub mint leaves between your hands and add to the shaker, then add liquids.
  2. Shake and pour into collins glass. Top off with club soda.


No celebration is complete without a party favor!

Guests received a make-your-own mojito kit in a vintage cigar box as a parting gift to remember our day.


A post-lunch stroll along the Riverwalk was in order.

Alysha got in to the vibrant color palette of Havana in her gwendolyn dress, madison avenue capri earrings & harmony sunglasses. 

Kendra is wearing the amara 2 sunglasses, the varadero tile necklace , the madison avenue collection tropical jungle cuff & the madison avenue laguna court luxe penelope.

Camille walks past the ivy-covered walls after checking out Havana’s inviting underground bar that you can’t miss on a visit to the Hotel!

Jenn grabs a beverage from the retro SMEG fridge (each room at the Havana has a different color) before our road trip comes to an end.


Our driver awaits…

Alysha bids farewell to our unforgettable day at Havana with kate spade new york in her mariella dress, harmony sunglasses, & grande bouquet statement bangle.