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Last updated: 27 April, 2022
Expert travel writer: Claire Boobbyer

Havana’s first five-star hotel is still its best: oozing class, and in a perfect position on the edge of the historic old city. Rooms are light and bright and comfortably cooled by air con; the rooftop infinity pool is a balm with its extraordinary views of the baroque facades of grand buildings; and the breakfast spread is the most sumptuous in the city.

It’s a one-minute stroll to the heart of the old town; the Ladies in Red Kempinski concierge reserves top restaurants for dinner; and tutti-frutti coloured classic American cars wait outside to whisk you off to other parts of town.

The Kempinski is perfect for those who like luxury and want to be at the heart of things.

Surrounding area

The Kempinski faces a cobbled square which is closed to traffic save taxis arriving at the hotel. The surrounding historic Old Havana streets are busy by day but fairly quiet at night as the attractions it surrounds are open by day but the main clusters of restaurants and bars for nightlife are found much deeper into Old Havana.

The hotel is opposite the Museum of Fine Arts (Universal Section) as well as Ernest Hemingway’s favourite bar, El Floridita. It’s a short walk to all the attractions of Old Havana, as well as Central Park with the Alicia Alonso Theater and the Capitol Building. Behind it is the gorgeous art deco Bacardí building. Taxis are available very close to the entrance.

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Key facilities

Airport transfers*
Beach: None
Fitness centre
Fitness classes
Golf course
Hot tub
Kids club
Parking: Not available
Pool (adults only)
Pool (indoor)
Pool (outdoor)
Pool (kids)
Tennis courts
WiFi: Free

Food & drink

All inclusive
Kids menu
Restaurant on-site
Self catering
Additional charge

Room types


Room facilities

Air conditioning
Flat screen TV
Jacuzzi (private)
Pool (private)
Tea & coffee making facilities

Bedding options

2+ bedrooms
3+ beds
Connecting rooms
Rollaway/sofa bed

Bucket list experiences our writer says you must do in this destination, closest first

The Malecon

Havana, Cuba[0.9 miles]

Join the locals on this famous sea wall for rum and sunsets over Havana’s skyline.

Best for ages: 8+ | Free

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Castle of Los Tres Reyes del Morro

Havana, Cuba[1.4 miles]

An impressive fort, which took 50 years to construct, that has become the iconic symbol of Havana. Climb the 19th-century lighthouse for a view of the entire city and Malecón.

Best for ages: 18+ | Free

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Other worthwhile experiences in this destination if you have the time or the interest, closest first

Havana Museum of the Fine Arts

Havana Museum of the Fine Arts

Havana, Cuba[0.1 miles]

Cuba’s most impressive museum, housed in two separate buildings almost next to each other, showcases the best of Cuban art (in one building) from the 1600s to the modern day, and international artists over 5 art-filled floors of a second building.

Best for ages: 13+ | £6

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People in front of El Floridita, historic fish restaurant and famous cocktail bar in Old Havana / Habana Vieja, Cuba, that was regularly visited by Ernest Hemingway

El Floridita

Havana, Cuba[0.1 miles]

Legendary American writer Ernest Hemingway downed a record 16 daiquiris in one sitting at this, his favourite Havana bar. The bartender mixed him a sugarless and double rum tipple and named it the Papa Doble. Come early to bag a barstool at the glamorous scarlet bar.

Best for ages: 18+ | Free

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National Capitol Building

National Capitol Building

Havana, Cuba[0.3 miles]

This imposing wedding-cake mansion is the seat of the Cuban government. Stop by to see the marble 400ft Hall of the Lost Steps, the gigantic Statue of the Republic, the bronze bas-relief front doors, and the statue of the devil in a patio devoid of shade.

Best for ages: 18+ | Free

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El Cafe

El Cafe

Havana, Cuba[0.4 miles]

This funky, Cuban-run cafe and coffee roastery in Old Havana is a popular stop. It sells arguably Havana’s best coffee, great breakfast and exceptional sourdough sandwiches including ample vegan and vegetarian options.

Best for ages: 13+ | Free

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Destination guides including or relevant to this place to stay



Sensual and sultry communist Caribbean capital, home to captivating, crumbling architecture, and enlivened by dance, music, avant-garde art and cocktails.

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