Museo de Ambiente Histórico Cubano
Casa de Diego Velázquez
The oldest house still standing in Cuba, this arresting early colonial abode dating from 1522 was the official residence of the island's...
If there's an archetype for romantic Cuban street life, Parque Céspedes is it. A throbbing kaleidoscope of walking, talking, hustling,...
Catedral de Nuestra Señora de la Asunción
Santiago's most important church is stunning both inside and out. There has been a cathedral on this site since the city's inception in...
This cinema, next to the cathedral, is one of only a few currently operating in Santiago de Cuba. Occasional English-language films.
Hotel Casa Granda
Positioned like a whitewashed theater box overlooking the unscripted cabaret of Parque Céspedes, the Casa Granda's Parisian-style...
Museo de Ambiente Histórico Cubano information
On Parque Céspedes' northwestern corner lies the Casa de Diego Velázquez. Dating from 1522, this is the oldest house still standing in Cuba. Restored in the late 1960s, the Andalusian-style facade (you'll know it by its enclosed balcony with the fine, Moorish-style woodwork) was restored in the late 1960s, and opened in 1970 as the Museo de Ambiente Histórico Cubano.
The ground floor was originally a trading house and gold foundry, while the upstairs was where Velázquez lived. Today, rooms display period furnishings and decoration from the 16th to 19th centuries. Check the two-way screens, where you could look out without being observed: a Turkish influence (Turkey had a big influence on European style at this time). Visitors are also taken through an adjacent 19th-century neoclassical house.