This report comes to you from sunny Havana where I have been enjoying the Partagas LCDH 15th anniversary celebrations.
The gala dinner was held at the Melia Cohiba Hotel and was a splendid affair with Massimo holding the auction and raffle and raising 32,000 Pesos for the Cuban National Health service. Well done Massimo, conducting an auction in 3 different languages at the same time is no mean feat.
The evening was filled with entertainment provided by some first rate Cuban singers and we were given many excellent and specially banded cigars including Flor de Leopoldina rolled by La China and some fantastic “109’s”
It was quite an honour to be called to the stage and recognized as an “Amigo de Partagas” as well as presented with a book style cabinet of 10 cigars specially made for the event.
Cigars certainly do bring friends together and as well as half of Italy being in Havana 🙂 I herfed with friends from the UK, Japan, Costa Rica, Canada, US and France to name a few countries that attendees came from.
Great to see my Italian friends Angelo, Massimo, Salvatore, Francesco, Valerio and others, I’m sure I heard more Italian than Spanish on this trip!
Zaff aka “UK Smoker” was spotted smoking his way through Havana. Finally met up with Scott from Canada ( and his lovely wife Kathleen) My old friends Amir and Tim from Canada are here of course. Naka from Tokyo looked very smart in his tux at the dinner.The only other British cigar merchant spotted was Ajay from Broadweighs cigars (where is everyone else from the UK???!!!)
Sadly no interesting cigars to be found in the cigar shops or should I say nothing we don’t have already in the UK or Germany so I’m guessing that Habanos now supplies Europe before they supply the Havana LCDH shops but that didn’t spoil the fun as we had some fantastic custom blended “Maravillas” sized cigars rolled for us at the Melia Habana as well as Villa Conde de Nueva. Both of these shops are a real buzz as is the Partagas LCDH which really has become my Havana meeting room 🙂 I’m afraid the rest of the shops had nothing special going on.
Saturday evening I was invited to dinner at the home of Valerio Cornale the owner of LCDH Grand Cayman and also the owner of one of the most important collections of Cuban cigar related antiques (another important and ever growing collection is on permanent display in my London office !) Valerio is a most gracious host and the Champagne did not stop flowing
Time for some Afro Cuban jazz, mojitos and cigars at Casa Amistad followed by modern jazz at The Jazz Cafe opposite the Melia Habana….. tough life and all that 🙂
I’ll pop some photos up on the website in the next few days:-)
Peaceful puffing from Havana.