April 5 – 7, 2017
- 3:30 AM – Depart Biltmore Hotel Miami for Miami International Airport (approximate 30 minute transfer).
- 6:00 AM – Havana Air flight EA 3139 departs for Havana.
- 7:00 AM – Arrive in Havana, the political and cultural center of the island.
- As you make your way into Havana enjoy an introductory bus tour of city. Then, get acquainted with Old Havana on a guided walking tour visiting the four city plazas and the Maquieta de la Habana Vieja, a scale model of the city.
- Transfer to Old Havana for lunch at La Moneda Cubana, a restaurant established in 1924 known for authentic Cuban cuisine.
- Check in at the Hotel Saratoga, a hotel just steps from the iconic Capitolio.
- Gather for a special Welcome Reception and Dinner at Café del Oriente, a landmark restaurant featuring elegant decor, tuxedoed waiters and delicious Cuban cuisine. End the evening at Café Taberna, featuring a musical performance including members of the famed Buena Vista Social Club. The Buena Vista Social Club was a members-only club that closed the 1940s, but remains a vital part of the Cuban culture and music scene today. This rousing live performance will feature a musician from the Club accompanied by the in-house jazz band.
Dress: Day – Comfortable Travel; Evening – Evening Casual. Slacks or dressy jeans and short sleeve collared shirt for men; dresses, skirts, or capris and blouse for women. No flip flops, please.
Day 2, Thursday, April 6: Havana Activities / Tropicana Nightclub Show
- Following breakfast, join ASEE/EDI for morning sessions at the University.
- Transfer to the Miramar area for lunch at El Abije, a restaurant offering a variety of Creole and Cuban dishes and well as its signature dish, El Ajibe chicken.
- After lunch, step into the world of Cuba’s famed cigars with a visit to a local cigar factory, where guests observe the time-honored techniques of local cigar rollers.
- Continue the afternoon tour to Colon Cemetery (Cementerio de Cristóbal Colón), regarded as one of the world’s most important cemeteries. This magnificent and historically significant cemetery was founded in 1876 and contains grave sites and monuments representing over a century of Latin history.
- Afterwards, shuttle over to the Almacenes San Jose Artisans’ Market, located in what was once a warehouse on the port of Havana. Shop for leather items, toys, ceramics, natural material sculpture and paintings while meeting local craftsmens. In addition to marveling at the handiwork of local Cubans, enjoy the beautiful steel structure of the building and the magnificent view of the bay.
- Gather with your ASEE/EDI hosts at a Cocktail Reception at the iconic Hotel Nacional de Cuba, accompanied by live musical entertainment. Following the reception, enjoy dinner and drinks at La Guarida, the filming site of the 1993 Oscar-nominated movie “Fresa y Chocolate.” End the evening with a cabaret performance at the Tropicana Club, one of Havana’s legendary destinations, or head back to the hotel for the night.
Dress: Day – Active Wear/Casual. Please wear comfortable walking shoes. Don’t forget to bring a camera. Please note that shorts and flip-flops are not allowed at the Tropicana Club.
Day 3, Friday, April 7: Travel Day
Morning / Afternoon:
- Following breakfast at the hotel, check out and transfer to the airport to depart Havana for home cities.
Dress: Comfortable Travel
Frequently Asked Questions:
Have questions about traveling to Cuba? Please review the Cuba Traveler FAQ to find answers to questions about currency, electricity, cellular service and more.
Important Numbers on Travel Day:
Casey Lazar, Cuba Incentive Travel Associates — 281.704.3355 (cell)
Register now for this program! The cost of this program is $2,675 per person double occupancy. If you will not be sharing a room there is a single occupancy supplement cost of $700, which brings the total to $3,375. These prices include round trip airfare from Miami, accommodations at the Hotel Saratoga, transfers in Havana, all meals and activities included in this itinerary, and gratuities. Payment information is listed on the main registration page. Please register as soon as possible, and remember to e-mail a copy of your passport (clearly showing your passport number and expiration date) to email@example.com.
Round trip airfare between Miami and Havana has been included in the cost of this program. Our flight schedule will be:
All documentation required for travel to Cuba will be included by Havana Air, including the required Cuban medical insurance, travel visa and affidavit. These items will be given to you at the airport prior to departure.
Reopened in 2005, Hotel Saratoga is one of Havana’s historic attractions, featuring a neoclassical façade, luxury interior appointments and high profile clientele to match. Hotel Saratoga boasts a prime location near the iconic Capitolio, the Partagàs Cigar Factory and the Parque de Fraternidad.
- 96 Guestrooms
- 2 Restaurants, 2 Bars
- Swimming pool
- Sun deck
Paseo del Prado No. 603
Municipio Habana Vieja
C.P. 10200, Ciudad de La Habana. Cuba
Havana is in the Eastern Time Zone.
Comfortable attire is recommended for the flight. Be sure to pack “smart casual” clothes. On this trip, no suits, ties or formal wear are required! Casual dress is appropriate. Attire for our Final Night Dinner will be evening casual. Please remember, shorts and flip-flops will not be allowed at Café Taberna or the Tropicana Club.
Internet & E-mail Access
Many public areas do not have Wi-Fi and travelers should plan for limited email correspondence and the use of print maps rather than GPS. It is best to tell friends and family that you are ‘off the grid’ during your stay in Cuba. However Verizon, AT&T, and T-Mobile offered service in Cuba as of last year. If one of these carriers is your cellular service provider you may be able to make calls back to the U.S. for approximately $3 per minute. For emergency situations please advise friends and family to contact Casey Lazar at 281-704-3355.
Because U.S. medical insurance is not accepted in Cuba, Cuban-issued medical insurance is required for the length of stay. Insurance is provided with the purchase of an airline ticket, which is included in this program. This will allow any visitor access to medical care while in Cuba.
- Accommodations at Hotel Saratoga (2 Nights)
- Breakfast (3)
- Lunch (2)
- Dinner (2)
- Welcome Dinner
- Final Night Dinner
- Group Activities (2)
- All ground transportation and transfers in itinerary
- Bilingual guides
- On-site Cuba Incentive Travel Associates staff
- Cuba Incentive Travel Associates customer service support
- All taxes, tips and gratuities for activities and meals included in this itinerary
Not included in this program are: items of a personal nature, including laundry, mini-bar charges, telephone charges, and other room incidentals, as well as meals not included in this itinerary.
Group Activity, Day One:
Walking Tour of Old Havana — Embark on a walking tour of the following sites as a knowledgeable, bilingual guide discusses history and points of interest:
- Plaza de Armas – The oldest of the main plazas, Plaza de Armas rests on the site where Havana was founded. During the colonial period, it was the parade ground for the military and home to the governor’s palace. Today, the palm-lined square boasts Hotel Santa Isabel, a monument to “Father of the Nation” Carlos Manuel de Céspedes, and the El Templete monument marking the city’s founding.
- The Maquieta de la Habana Vieja – Featuring a 1:500 scale model of Old Havana, this exhibit is the perfect way to see how the capitol city fits together. Curators can also describe the urban planning methodology presently in use by the Cuban government.
- Plaza de San Francisco de Asís – This plaza takes its name from the Basilica Menor de San Francisco de Asís, a Franciscan monastery which is now used for music concerts. It is also well known for its Fuente de los Leones, which was once a fresh water supply to passing ships.
- Plaza Vieja – This plaza, translated as “Old Square,” was built as a residential area in the 1500s. Over the centuries, it has served a variety of purposes, from open-air market to bullfight arena. Today, it is nearly completely restored and surrounded with a mixture of colonial residences and decorative architecture distinguished by flowing curves and asymmetrical shapes. In addition to galleries, shopping, cafes and restaurants, the lively plaza also is home to several progressive sculptures.
- Plaza de la Catedral – Cathedral Square is one of the main squares in Old Havana and the site of the Cathedral of Havana from which it takes its name. It contains the Colonial Art Museum (Museo del Arte Colonial) and a number of restaurants.
Group Activity, Day Two:
- Cigar Factory Visit – Step into the world of Cuba’s famed cigars with a visit to a local cigar factory, where guests observe the time-honored techniques of local cigar rollers. As with much in this historic city, walking into a Havana cigar factory is like stepping backward in time to a different era.
- Colon Cemetery Visit – Havana’s Colon Cemetery, regarded as one of the world’s most important cemeteries, both historically and architecturally, and certainly the most important in Latin America. It was named for Christopher Columbus and designed with a structure defining the social rank of the dead. This cemetery is composed of more than 140 acres showcasing elaborate sculptures, and over 500 estimated major mausoleums, chapels, and family vaults.
- San Jose Artisans’ Market Visit – Located in what was once a warehouse on the port of Havana, the San José Artisans Market now offers an opportunity to browse and purchase the crafts of local artisans. Here, leather items, toys, ceramics, natural material sculpture and paintings are exhibited. Guayaberas, the traditional loose linen shirt for men may also be found at the market. In addition to marveling at the handiwork of local Cubans, you may also enjoy the beautiful steel structure of the building and the magnificent view of the bay.
For more information, please call Cuba Incentive Travel Headquarters: 832-482-3950 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.