Cuba is arguably the hottest destination for travelers right now, but there's a catch: lodging. From shabby-yet-expensive government-owned hotels to unattractive hostels, the country's accommodation situation hasn't caught up to the demand for tourism. Perhaps it's why airlines such as American and Jet Blue have scaled back service to Havana.
But this will soon change with the opening of The Gran Hotel Manzana Kempinski La Habana, a UNESCO World Heritage site located within the historic Manzana de Gómez building in the heart of Old Havana, serving as Cuba's first-ever five-star hotel. The property will feature 246 oversized rooms and suites, posh perks like a rooftop terrace and swimming pool, three restaurants, a lobby bar, and cigar lounge, along with an on-site spa managed by Resense.
Xavier Destribats, Senior Vice President of the Americas and General Manager Gran Hotel Manzana Kempinski La Habana, tells ShermansTravel that, "This beautiful property marks Kempinski's re-entry to the Americas and will be the first real five-star luxury hotel in Cuba. With our European heritage and management know-how and together with our partner Gaviota, we are convinced that this hotel will take the luxury hospitality to a new level; the quality of this hotel is outstanding. The arrival of Gran Hotel Manzana Kempinski will restore Manzana de Gómez from faded glory to its former role as a stylish destination in Cuba's capital, the place to be at the heart of Old Havana."
The 120-year-old Swiss company, which currently operates 75 five-star hotels and residences in 30 countries, recently announced this new endeavor. The Gran Hotel Manzana Kempinski La Habana is expected to open in the second quarter of this year, and will surely make great strides for luxury tourism in Cuba.