El Floridita, Havana
I appreciate the historical connection this old Havana bar has to the world in regards to its association with famed author Ernest Hemingway. I've always liked finding cafes, plazas, and old hotels where famous historical figures spent time while in these various cities. Apparently old Hemingway enjoyed more than a few nights hanging out in El Floridita when he lived in Havana back in the 1950's. The bar has even placed a life sized monument depicting Hemingway at his usual spot at the corner of the bar. Most tourists find themselves embracing the bronze Hemingway like they were old pals out for a drink. The bar is old & probably hasn't changed a whole lot since the days of Hemingway. It's worth a visit, but if you go there for their famed Daquari's be prepared to shell out some good money. It's worth a look just to say you've been there, done that!
Dress Code: I don't think they'd turn away a paying customer.
Directions: Everyone knows.
While there's a lot of places to have a drink in Havana Old Town, its all very tame stuff and there's little excitement happens. The Floridita isn't much to get excited about but its the better of the 2 Hemmingway bars at least because its bigger than the other and also located nearer to Parque Central. There's a steady ebb and flow of people coming and going because it gets so many tourists, thus its always fairly busy. There's live music, very capable performers indeed. Of course every few songs someone from the band will circulate among the crowd looking to sell their CDs and then use that as opening to ask for some cash (this seems to be standard in Cuba).
Watch your change, at least one guy behind the bar is desparate to embrace capitalism at any cost.
Directions: Everyone knows.Add to your Trip Planner
One of my "had to do"'s while in Havana was to sip a daiquiri in this infamous old haunt of Ernest Hemingway. This was Hemingway's favourite drink, though rumour has it that not only was he an alcoholic but that he was also a diabetic!
I came upon the bar quite by accident when wandering the old town of Havana, and the first thing that surprised me was the old plastic backlit sign over the building advertising "La Floridita." As so much effort has gone into renovating Old Havana I was expecting something perhaps a little different.
However, as soon as the smartly dressed doorman opened the glass dors to admit me I knew I had entered someplace special. The exterior belies the comfort and style of the interior, which is crowded with tourists sipping daiquiris. Almost nobody seems to drink anything else!
Smartly dressed men in suits go around with humidors selling the best Cuban cigars. A band plays rhythmic caribbean music and everyone is right into the swing of things. They take requests, too.
A big bronze statue of Hemingway stands in the corner by the bar and people pose for pics beside the infamous author.
There's a restaurant at the back behind heavy velvet drapes, and I wished I had a reservation.
Altogether a place I am longing to go back to.
Do confirm 30 types of Daiquiri, the ones that we tried really delicious the most expensive cocktails that we had in Cuba - around €6 each...
the place was bit deserted though in the evening when the tourists flows were gone back to Varadero - specially in comparison to the other popular local bars.
Directions: Everyone knows.