Hotel Habana Libre

Hotel in Vedado

This icon of the Havana skyline opened in March 1958 on the eve of Batista's last waltz. Originally the Havana Hilton, it was commandeered by Castro's rebels in January 1959, who turned it into their temporary HQ. Now managed by Spain's Meliá chain it is by turns spectacular (behold the views!) and sloppy (old-school TVs, slow wi-fi, shaky elevators).

The hotel's communal areas easily outshine the slightly outdated rooms. The 25th-floor cabaret El Turquino with its retractable roof is a city institution.