Havana’s Past & Present

March 7-13, 2015


Engage in a meaningful exchange of ideas with Cubans from all walks of life—including preservation, music, architecture, planning, art, cuisine, and literature.

Study Leader Information

Mary Werner DeNadai, FAIA For the past 30 years, 26 of which have been in association with John Milner, Mary Werner DeNadai, FAIA has focused her architectural career on the field of historic preservation. Ms. DeNadai is personally involved with the firm’s projects that primarily include historic institutional, commercial and ecclesiastical buildings in the full spectrum of architectural styles and periods. Her professional expertise is broadly recognized in the management of large, complex projects including historic structure assessment, feasibility analysis, development of preservation priorities, master planning for multi-phased projects and creative approaches to adaptive reuse programming and design.

Tour Itinerary

March 7: Arrive in Miami and check into your hotel for an overnight stay. Attend a welcome reception and dinner with a program overview provided by your tour expert.
March 8: Depart from Miami International Airport on a charter flight to Havana. Before lunch, visit the Morro Castle, built in 1589 to help protect the bay. Later, check-in to the Meliá Cohíba, a well-appointed hotel located along the lovely Malecón and affording water views. Gather for an informational briefing with introductory remarks by your tour manager and Cuban guide, followed by a welcome dinner in Old Havana. (L, D)
March 9: Begin the day with a visit to “The House with Green Tiles,” a restored American Queen Anne-style house, and meet with a representative from the City’s Historian Office to discuss the city’s preservation efforts. After the presentation, depart for the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Old Havana, founded in 1519 and now a world class preservation site. Join a walk through the city’s Colonial architecture and historic squares. Accompanied by Esuebio Leal, the Havana City Historian, visit a restoration training facility to learn about how Havana is keeping up with the demand for a qualified workforce. Before dinner, attend a reception at the Hotel Riviera and learn about the building’s history. Then enjoy dinner on your own at a local paladar, a privately owned restaurant that Cubans have been able to set up in their homes as one of the first opportunities for private enterprise allowed. (B, L)
March 10: Today, discover the 20th-century architecture of Havana and the neighborhoods outside of Old Havana with a representative from the City Historian’s Office. Next, visit the National Art Schools, Cuba’s premier art institute and one of the country’s most outstanding architectural achievements of the Cuban Revolution. Then depart for a forum at the University of Havana and take the opportunity to relate directly with the students. (B, L)
March 11: Depart this morning to Finca Vigía, Ernest Hemingway’s home. The 12-acre property contains original furniture and personal memorabilia collected by the author. Learn about the National Trust for Historic Preservation’s involvement in restoring the property. Then meet with an owner of a paladar to discuss the challenges of being an entrepreneur and the need for agricultural sustainability in Cuba. Later, take a guided walk down the Prado, a pedestrian boulevard lined with some of Havana’s most important buildings. (B, L)
March 12: Begin the day by visiting the Cementerio de Colon. With a specialist, learn about one of the most distinguished cemeteries in Latin America. Then take the opportunity to Cuba’s most important art collection at the National Museum of Fine Arts or visit the adjacent Revolution Museum, housed in the former Presidential Palace last used by Fulgencio Batista. After lunch in the gardens of the famed Hotel Nacional, enjoy a unique musical and dance performance by one of Cuba’s most exciting dance troupes. This evening, gather for a farewell reception at the hotel before setting out for your final dinner in Havana. (B, L, D)
March 13: Check out of the hotel and transfer to the airport for your return charter flight to Miami. (B)


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