- Style Retro Cuban remix
- Setting Sight-studded River Walk
From its enviable location just off the tropical River Walk in San Antonio, Hotel Havana pays a tribute to old-world Cuban decadence and glamour through muted pastels, wrought-iron accents and moody lighting. The sexy candlelit lounge is a perfect place to hide away with a mojito while imagining those opulent good old days.
Need to know
- Rooms 27, including 11 suites.
- Rates Double rooms from $115.00, excluding tax at 16.75 per cent.
- More details Rates exclude breakfast, from US$20.
- Facilities Private parking, free Wi-Fi throughout. In rooms: flatscreen TV, pre-loaded iPod with dock, fully stocked Smeg minibar, radio, and Red Flower toiletries.
- Check–out 12 noon, but flexible up until 2pm. Earliest check-in, 3pm.
Children Little Smiths are welcome, with cots and roll-out beds available free. That said, the hotel is more suited for romantic getaways.
- Eco‐friendly During the renovation of this historic structure, only locally sourced (and often salvaged) materials were used.
- Also Pets are welcome, for US$25 a day.
In the know
- Our favourite rooms We love the exposed brickwork and modest price tag of room 15, a Havana King. Room 12, a Queen suite, has even more exposed brick, and a separate living or working area, sectioned off by large floor-to-ceiling windows. For full-blown luxury, room 31, the Penthouse Suite, is definitely worth the splurge. The duplex apartment features a dramatic blue wrought-iron staircase that leads up to the mezzanine bedroom. The ensuite is tiled in a retro sky blue and contains a huge tub, exposed drencher shower and a mustard yellow velour armchair.
- Packing tips A sunhat for battling the Texan heat; active types should pack running shoes: the Riverwalk is a picturesque favourite for joggers.
- Also If you ask at the front desk, they’ll bring an Apple TV, loaded with Cuban movies, to your room.
Food and drink at Hotel Havana
- Hotel restaurant Ocho restaurant has a tempting pan-Latin menu, glass walls, a soaring ceiling (opened up in warmer months) and a prime perch overlooking the River Walk. The inventive breakfast menu has caused a bit of a buzz: try the plantain griddle cakes with Mexican crema and blueberries or the shrimp and crab campachena.
- Dress code Rakish open shirts, smouldering skirt suits – channel Bogart and Bacall in To Have and Have Not.
- Top table The terraces dotted around the hotel are perfect for evening mojitos.
- Last orders The bar opens at 5pm, and closes at midnight (2am on Fridays and Saturdays).
- Room service None.
- Hotel bar Hidden in the basement, Ocho Lounge is a sexy speakeasy lit with dozens of candles encased in red glass. The saffron yellow, red, brown and orange furnishings contrast with cool turquoise walls, and the drinks menu includes mescal coffee, Mexican beer, rum, and cocktails. In keeping with the Cuban spirit (if not it's still-embargoed tobacco exports), cigars are available to smoke from the hotel’s terraces.