06 July 2007

How Quaint.

I have sarcastically called Castro’s Cuba a “totalitarian amusement park” in the past since unless I’m talking to a Cuban or someone who has gone out of their way to search for the truth all I hear is tales of marvels about a quaint place with old cars, no Mc Donald’s and friendly people.

But it’s not an amusement park. It’s more like a theme park where tourists from all over the world can go and experience feeling superior and marvel at the quaint surroundings that seem stuck in a 50’s time capsule.

The regime has decided to cater to these quaintness seekers by opening “boutique hotels”.

For example, take British executives Julie Connery, 37, and Richard Foster, 40. According to the Sun Sentinel article these two


visited Cuba to experience one of the world's last socialist nations and would gladly return.


they asked to stay an extra night after a week at the art nouveau-style Hotel Raquel in colonial Havana, but staff said the room rate would double: The new reservation did not come through their travel agency. The couple moved out, disappointed that managers would not accommodate them at the same rate."They just haven't bought into customer service,"

"They're friendly. But whereas in the United Kingdom it seems as if everyone is aspiring to be the CEO, here it's just a job."


Friendly little brown colonials -friendly but lazy. That’s why Fidel has to provide everything for them, like children. They haven’t “bought into” that whole work ethic thing yet.

How quaint.

7 comments:

Charlie Bravo said...

The Raquel was re-built with some solid Israeli capital. Amongst it famous guests you have the man who caught Eichmann, Rafi Eitan, who reportedly is involved in the citrus business in Cuba.

El Gusano said...

Israel is one of those countries that should be tapped for ideas and capital to help with the reconstruction.

Charlie Bravo said...

Yeah, the funny thing is that kasstro supported Arafat, Al Fatah, and Hamas. Israel is already present in Cuba, investing some monies here and there. And yeah, they are cementing their position in Cuba for a kasstroless future, just as much as others.

CUBAWATCHER said...

Been sayin' it for years - the indifference and sometimes overt support Europeans often confer unto the Cuban regime displays a great deal of arrogance and prejudice against the Cuban people - as you said: "those quaint Cubans" with their cute old cars.

Matt said...

Just with regards to these two guys, I've met this type before. One guy I met last summer told me he wanted to visit Cuba before Kasstro died because he didn't want it to change. I didn't say a thing to him. I was taken aback by the self-centeredness of this guy and his utter lack of concern for all those Cubans stuck under the system's boot. Pathetic. It's something I will never understand: how people can support a system in another country that they would clearly never want in their own.

Anonymous said...

A lot of people who live in countries who are or who have been imperialism have this attitude. I always get treated 100% better when I tell Americans that I am Cuban as opposed to Latina. They are enamoured of Cuba in this very fetishistic virgin way. They imagine it the way the imagined Hawaii or Japan in previous times. They don't want it to change, they want to be able to go over there and pay 50 cents for everything and pat the locals on the head....

Joolz Connery said...

As one of the people you've all been talking about (and just to put you right Matt, you've never met me before so really can't judge what type I am).. our trip to Cuba was to experience the culture of the country, not to support any particular regime or pat any locals on the head. I would suggest that you don't judge people before you've met them and also take into account that people are often misrepresented in the local rags. Our comments were in response to being overcharged unnecessarily and not because we expected everything for nothing. The intention was to visit an interesting country, not lord it up as capitalised Europeans. Shame you decided to jump to conclusions instead.