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How long before Cuba/Havana goes "Caribbean Resort"

How long before Cuba/Havana goes "Caribbean Resort"

Old Jun 7, 17, 5:51 pm
  #1  
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How long before Cuba/Havana goes "Caribbean Resort"

Went to Havana last month, just for a few days, and had a fantastic time.

The architecture (contrast from Spanish colonial all the way through Soviet influence), the history, the people, the food, and the character/uniqueness in general.

I know Cuba has been a major destination for Non-Americans for quite some time, but now that it's opening up to Americans, what do some of the educated folks on here think will happen, and over what time frame?

How long before you think Cuba (Havana especially) will be just another Caribbean resort spot, full of chain hotels, cookie cutter activities, etc?

I've been telling several friends to go - and I keep saying "go before it changes" - but I'd like to hear speculation on when that will be.
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Old Jun 7, 17, 8:05 pm
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Originally Posted by Presguy View Post
Went to Havana last month, just for a few days, and had a fantastic time.

The architecture (contrast from Spanish colonial all the way through Soviet influence), the history, the people, the food, and the character/uniqueness in general.

I know Cuba has been a major destination for Non-Americans for quite some time, but now that it's opening up to Americans, what do some of the educated folks on here think will happen, and over what time frame?

How long before you think Cuba (Havana especially) will be just another Caribbean resort spot, full of chain hotels, cookie cutter activities, etc?

I've been telling several friends to go - and I keep saying "go before it changes" - but I'd like to hear speculation on when that will be.
Well, given all the current speculation about Trump reversing Obama's changes any minute now, probably at least not for the next 4 years. Go before he closes things down again, yeah.
And even when the embargo is ended, I don't think the culture and the people will change significantly. The culture is too strong and the people are too proud of it.
The next guy in line for leadership of Cuba is not radically different from the current one, just younger.
The government still regulates (and currently prohibits close to Havana) any building along the coastline.
It'll take decades after the embargo is lifted before Cubans can earn enough to afford enough new cars to change the visuals and to fix up buildings they own, even if the relatives in Mami help.
But maybe the cases will be able to get mattresses whose springs you can't feel, reducing back aches.
Right now Veradero is wall to wall resort hotels, BUT if you stay in the casas on the town end of the peninsula, you'd never know they existed.
And personally I don't think a Cuba with better food, even MickeyD's beef not pork burgers, is a bad thing.
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Old Jun 8, 17, 12:42 am
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Thanks for the thoughts - I was actually hoping you'd be one to answer.

I had certainly given thought to how the US political climate might affect things - I hadn't considered as strongly how Cuban "cultural, political, and economic inertia" might help preserve the lifestyle. I also didn't know about the prohibitions on building near the coastline.

MickeyDs? Really? One of the thing I enjoyed most about the trip (granted, I like to eat), was the fresh fish, good ham and pork, and the crisp veggies (way better than mainstream US produce). I'd happy take that all day long, and twice on Sundays, before MickeyDs.
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Old Jun 8, 17, 1:35 am
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Well when it does hopefully that will be a sign the average Cuban has actually gained something......
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Old Jun 8, 17, 6:26 am
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It will be the end for Cuba. Look at Panama and Puerto Rico, what disasters. The average Cuban will not gain anything but instead they will lose everything they already have. Back to Batista days.
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Old Jun 8, 17, 11:53 pm
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Originally Posted by djjaguar64 View Post
It will be the end for Cuba. Look at Panama and Puerto Rico, what disasters. The average Cuban will not gain anything but instead they will lose everything they already have. Back to Batista days.
I think that would truly be a shame. I'll be honest and say I don't see too many parallels been Cuba and Puerto Rico's current crisis, but I would hate to see the Cuban people worse off than they are.

I think "cookie cutter tourism" might end up being a slight boost to the economy and standard of living overall (provided the government writes policies that allow this).

However, I do think the uniqueness of the Cuban experience (and there are fewer and fewer such places left) will disappear fast.
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Old Jun 10, 17, 2:05 pm
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Originally Posted by Presguy View Post
MickeyDs? Really? One of the thing I enjoyed most about the trip (granted, I like to eat), was the fresh fish, good ham and pork, and the crisp veggies (way better than mainstream US produce). I'd happy take that all day long, and twice on Sundays, before MickeyDs.
Crisp veggies? The only crisp veg I saw was the slivered cabbage that passes for salad in most places. Three lettuce leaves and a slice of cute added in the fanciest places. Or a couple of teaspoons of mush that came when a "side" of veggies was ordered. The famous eco restaurant in the country was too busy with buses to bother seating two.

Fancy Colonial restaurant with live music and fish in thin, dried out filet, no taste, cooked to death. Cardboard. Inedible. Same at others in other cities.
Shrimp with overpowering garlic.

Dry pork "hamburgers" at food stalls. Mickey's would have been gourmet in comparison.

Stringy, overlooked lamb disguised by heavy sauce. At two different places.

Something masquerading as Alfredo.

More bad food in 2 trips than any other destination I've ever been to.

I tried.
Fresh fish came to the casa particular in Havana at my request, three nice big ones in a plastic bag, just out of the water. Fresh shrimp from the black market "store" around the corner at higher than US prices per pound.
Good roast pork sandwich at a local rumba.
Good sandwich at a hole in the wall in Havana Vieja.
Decent lagosta and fried seafood, surprisingly, at a fancy inland restaurant where the chair height put the table just under my chin.

Thank goodness my appetite diminishes in the extreme heat.
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Old Jun 10, 17, 2:16 pm
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Originally Posted by djjaguar64 View Post
Back to Batista days.
Batista days? When US criminals schemed to build expensive hotels? And rich US tourists paid big money to drink and dance and eat fancy food, calling the place quaint and charming, and hoping it would stay that way, while Cubans went without?
Sounds eerily like today.
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Old Jun 14, 17, 9:48 am
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I thought there was a lot of Americans there in April already. Can see things turning quick enough to be honest.
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Old Jun 15, 17, 1:14 pm
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Yeah, well........
http://www.miamiherald.com/news/nati...156337129.html
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Old Jun 15, 17, 1:41 pm
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Rubio is a behind kisser, a loser and so is his master. mmmhuh, 60 years of American policy did not do nothing and lets see what Tramp can do. In the background I am sure his sons are there building tramp towers.

I think China, Canada and Europe should lead in Cuba.

Last edited by djjaguar64; Jun 15, 17 at 1:47 pm
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Old Jun 17, 17, 12:23 am
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I am supporting the withdrawing of the travel opportunities for americans. Already now Cuba has changed a lot and not to the better. Comparing nowadays Havanna to 10 or 15 years ago it has lost already a lot.

Americans should travel to Panama, Pattaya or Disney World Resort in Orlando but please do not come to Cuba. :-)
I am selfish.
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Old Jun 17, 17, 9:19 pm
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Originally Posted by carpetbagger View Post
I am supporting the withdrawing of the travel opportunities for americans. Already now Cuba has changed a lot and not to the better. Comparing nowadays Havanna to 10 or 15 years ago it has lost already a lot.

Americans should travel to Panama, Pattaya or Disney World Resort in Orlando but please do not come to Cuba. :-)
I am selfish.
^^^
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Old Jun 18, 17, 4:58 pm
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Originally Posted by carpetbagger View Post
Already now Cuba has changed a lot and not to the better. Comparing nowadays Havanna to 10 or 15 years ago it has lost already a lot.
Yeah, lost a lot, like the privations of the Special Period. I'm sure Cubans who suffered through that period fully agree with you that life is worse now that they can open their own businesses and buy things to improve their lives.
Let them all continue to suffer so you can be "selfish"?
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Old Jun 18, 17, 6:05 pm
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I disagree with the premise of the question posed in the subject line. The majority of non-U.S. visitors to Cuba arrive with a package and stay at the beach. Go to any big resort and it will be packed with Canadians and Germans, among other nationalities. That type of tourism has officially been off limits to us Yanks for over a half-century. U.S. hotel chains have been prohibited from setting up shop during that time too, but Barceló, Iberostar, Meliá, and Blue Diamond have happily swooped in to fill the vacuum. The U.S. did not plop down the Meliá Jardines del Rey and its almost 1,200 rooms on Cayo Coco. Spain did that in partnership with the Cuban government and with the support of all the Canadians and Europeans who are eager to stay at such resorts.

So, my question is this: What do you think we Americans are going to do to Cuba that Canadians and Europeans haven’t already done? Haven’t you folks already turned Cuba into a big beach resort? We may have started the Cuba-as-fun-in-the-sun-destination ball rolling before the Revolution, but you guys took off with it and didn’t look back.

The answer to the question in the subject line is that Cuba is already there, and it was there long before the opening to Americans in 2015.
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