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[h=3]The AACA Museum is offering you the opportunity to explore Cuba!

April 23 – May 1, 2015[/h]Explore Cuba – The people, the culture and the classic cars!

The AACA Museum is excited to announce a trip to Cuba April 23 – May 1, 2015!

The weather in Cuba during the time of the trip should be just perfect with temperatures in the mid-upper 70’s.

Highlights:

• Visit a car museum and attend a meeting with Havana’s Classic Car Club

• Visit Hemingway’s former home, Finca Vigia

• In-Studio discussions with a variety of Cuban artists

• Sampling of local fare at privately owned paladars

• 20 meals

• Tour galleries & museums under the guidance of experts in local art & history

Important points:

* Availability is limited and will be on a first-come, first-served basis.

* Sign up must be completed by January 6th

* Initial deposit is $600 per person

* You will need a current passport

Our Travel Consultant & Agency Partner for this trip is International Expeditions (License CT-2013-299822-1). Our tour coordinators for this trip, is Sherry Boyd and Sherry can be reached at sherry.boyd@ietravel.com or via telephone at Toll-free: 800-633-4734 ext. 122#.

Visit http://www.aacamuseum.org/aaca-museum-cuba-trip-spring-2015/ for more information on this exciting opportunity!!

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WOW, I would be right on that, however I will be on a trip to Viet Nam, Cambodia, Laos, and Thailand during those dates.

I have always thought that Cuba would be a fun trip. Back in the day we Americans did a lot of vacationing down there.

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Is it a flight or a cruise, total cost is what and will Cuba require visitor or Non-immigrant visas ? Wayne

Free phone call or e-mail!

Our Travel Consultant & Agency Partner for this trip is International Expeditions (License CT-2013-299822-1). Our tour coordinators for this trip, is Sherry Boyd and Sherry can be reached at sherry.boyd@ietravel.com or via telephone at Toll-free: 800-633-4734 ext. 122#.

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Thank you both. Yes the information is there. I find it very pricy. I have travelled to Cuba most years for the last 10 from Canada. For meals, drinks, accommodation at their best hotels, and flights I have been paying less than. $1000 dollars. From what I see this trip is about $6000. Can someone explain the difference ?

Wayne

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What you're getting from this tour is immersion with real-life car culture people of Cuba, and the timing couldn't be more incredible. Could you do it on your own on the cheap? Sure, but you better speak Spanish and expect to barely scratch the insider angle that the trip offers. Wish I could afford it, 'cause it'll be a blast and, for those who do go, I bet the lucky Americanos will be treated like royalty!

Classic American Cars Of Cuba, produced for PBS in 2002, 47 minutes.

<iframe width="512" height="376" src="http://video.pbs.org/viralplayer/1317690969" frameborder="0" marginwidth="0" marginheight="0" scrolling="no" seamless></iframe>

Another good one, Cuba, the Accidental Eden, for Nature in 2010, 53 minutes.

<iframe width="512" height="376" src="http://video.pbs.org/viralplayer/1598230084?chapter=1" frameborder="0" marginwidth="0" marginheight="0" scrolling="no" seamless></iframe>

It's not every day that us tacky Americans get to intimately discover a New World, one that's only 90 miles away.

What an opportunity! :D

TG

Edited by TG57Roadmaster (see edit history)
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  • 2 weeks later...

cuba_aos50s__56.JPG.1024x768_q80_crop-scale.jpg

cuba_aos50s__79.JPG.1024x768_q80_crop-scale.jpg

Found this interesting archive of pre-'55 photos at Cubania, a French site. It shows plenty of cars when they were new and shiny, and the pics are a unique look into infrastructure improvements and American companies there at the time. Photo 246 near the end is the brand new (1953) American Embassy.

The former Embassy was in the Horter Building owned by a friend's grandfather, at Calles Obispo and Oficios, seen below just before the Embassy relocated, now the home of the Museo Nacional de Historia Natural de Cuba.

US%20Embassy%20in%20Havana.jpg

View from the Plaza de Armas.

I think the folks are going to like the pedestrian-only Obispo, if this piece from from Cubania is any indication (translate with one right click; there's a lot of info to be gleaned from the site). Take a look at 19th-Century Cienfuegos, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and Trinidad, and the Castillo de San Pedro de la Roca, Santiago de Cuba.

Tourism is going to explode in Cuba, and with it renewed American investment.

TG

Edited by TG57Roadmaster (see edit history)
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I would totally do this if were after June 1 when I am off until August! I have always wanted to visit Cuba and meet Fidel! (I love meeting famous people! Among these are actors, politicians (including 2 VPs) and other people of note!

Fidel Castro has not been President for several years. After becomming very ill he named his brother Raul Castro president. What makes you think you will meet the president if you journey to Cuba ? Wayne

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1. The cost is way high and someone or some people are going to be getting a big profit from it.

2. Most all of the old cars there are frankensteins of new car parts in old bodies. Original old parts have been largely unavailable for many decades and these cars are daily drivers for most Cubans so the wear and tear has been far greater than most old cars found in the US.

3. If you do not care about the money or the fact that most of the cars are frankensteins, it could be a fun trip for someone who is not used to international travel.

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I will give anyone a tip that is going to go to Cuba. DO NOT DRIVE any kind of vehicle in Cuba when you go there!!!!!!!!! If you get in a fender bender your passport will be taken away and not allowed to leave until all maters are settled in court. You see it in the Canadian news every winter where some person is stuck in Cuba for months on end waiting to settle in court costing you thousands and thousands of dollars in expenses if you win or loose.

Another issue people do not realise is the embargo also stopped parts from being shipped there. Most of the cars are a Frankenstein repair with European diesel engines to parts being fabricated to work. A fellow from Oshawa Ont. brought a 1931 Buick touring from one of the islands many years ago and he was saying how it was extremely worn-out and parts cobbled up to work but no rust.

Edited by Joe in Canada (see edit history)
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For their farewell soiree in Cuba, the lucky group will dine on the terrace of Xanadu, begun in 1926

by Irénée du Pont, used as a family winter home for decades, turned into a hotel and golf club

clubhouse by the Castro regime.

For some excellent reading on Cuban architecture and history, I recommend these two books;

check your library or get them at Amazon.

"The Splendor of Cuba: 450 years of Architecture and Interiors"; you can preview part of the book at this link

(use the "Look Inside" function), and get a fascinating snippet on how Xanadu was photographed here.

"Great Houses of Havana: A Century of Cuban Style" is a lushly-photographed gem waiting to be mined,

full of palacios, mansion, embassies and important historic dwellings that have been maintained

and/or restored through the years; some are museums.

Granted, the AACA'ers will not get the access afforded the photogs and authors of these tomes,

but a mini archi-tour would be high on my list of priorities if time and scheduling permitted.

For decades we've been led down a garden path to believe that Cuba is a rat hole full of poverty,

crumbling buildings, rundown old cars, all clapped out and unworthy.

Capturing the grandeur of the former Capital of Colonial Spain and its environs,

these books seem to prove otherwise, and I'm thrilled to have them.

TG

Edited by TG57Roadmaster (see edit history)
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For decades we've been led down a garden path to believe that Cuba is a rat hole full of poverty,

crumbling buildings, rundown old cars, all clapped out and unworthy.

Capturing the grandeur of the former Capital of Colonial Spain and its environs,

these books seem to prove otherwise, and I'm thrilled to have them.

TG

For decades, people have been risking (and losing) their lives to escape the " ... grandeur of the former Capital of Colonial Spain ...". You have some BOOKS that seem to prove that Cuba is other than what it is: a totalitarian dictatorship? Yes, I've been to Cuba, and yes, I lived in South Florida for more than 40 years. Yes, I believe the Cuban embargo should be lifted immediately and should have been lifted years ago.

Happy New Year,

Grog

P.S. There are NO 20 year old rust-free cars in the Caribbean. Think about it.

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Under Communism since 1959 and nothing has changed, and I mean nothing. The same buildings, the same cars, they haven't even been painted.

You can see the difference between Communism and democracy from outer space. See the satellite photo taken at night of Korea with the south brightly lighted and the north completely dark.

https://www.bing.com/images/search?q=korea+night+satellite+picture&id=0EF842BF86DA4C81EB447367DAD5F99B2EE0FD99&FORM=IQFRBA

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Cuba also has a world class free medical plan for all Cubans.

That may be but many of those that can afford it travel to Canada for medical treatment ! Also the staff at hotels and resorts in Cuba are very, very greatful if you give them aspirin, Tylenol or band aides. A friend of mine takes all the dollar store eye glasses she can because they are in such need ! Wayne

Edited by AlCapone (see edit history)
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That may be but many of those that can afford it travel to Canada for medical treatment ! Also the staff at hotels and resorts in Cuba are very, very greatful if you give them aspirin, Tylenol or band aides. A friend of mine takes all the dollar store eye glasses she can because they are in such need ! Wayne

Every little bit helps; however, all of the aspirin, Tylenol Band Aids, eye glasses etc. that the Cubans receive under their "World Class Free Medical Plan" are absolutely free!

Here in the USA, we'll be getting a.... Balance of snarky political comment deleted by "Grogedit"

Cheers,

Grog

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Al,

I started to make a political comment, but realized that this is not a political thread, so I used "Grogedit" to delete the rest of the sentence. "Grogedit" is another name for the Delete Key on Capn Grog's computer keyboard. All too often, my attempts at levity/humor fall flat. My apologies. It won't happen again or until the next time.

Cheers,

Grog

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Al,

I started to make a political comment, but realized that this is not a political thread, so I used "Grogedit" to delete the rest of the sentence. "Grogedit" is another name for the Delete Key on Capn Grog's computer keyboard. All too often, my attempts at levity/humor fall flat. My apologies. It won't happen again or until the next time.

Cheers,

Grog

I took no offence whatsoever. If there was a funny there I did not want to miss it.

Wayne

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...............so I used "Grogedit" to delete the rest of the sentence. "Grogedit" is another name for the Delete Key on Capn Grog's computer keyboard...................

I have a bruise on my forehead, as I tried to decipher Grogedit????????

"Bong"!!!! Whacked right beside the forehead when I split the word, Grog! :confused::D

"Grog-edit"

It's a little slow here in Virginia today! :o

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A trip to Cuba may be an interesting cultural experience,

but I suspect it won't be as in-depth and people-oriented

as the correspondents on this forum hope. Remember it is

a totalitarian dictatorship, which has an iron grip on its people,

many of whom live in poverty and fear with no way to get out of it.

As Communism has seized people's property, any grand homes and palaces

are likely occupied by the highest echelon of the Communist government.

Knowledge, not naivete, is strength. If you think the statements above are overreaching,

the quotations from a recent Wall Street Journal (Dec. 22, page A15,

column by Mary O'Grady) give a glimpse:

"in the first six months of this year, according to The Havana

Consulting Group, there were 327,000 visitors to Cuba from

the U. S."

"The isolation...is caused by the police state, which

controls and surveils foreigners' movements, herding

most visitors into resort enclaves...

"More visitors won't do anything to reduce Cuban poverty.

The regime pockets the hard currency that they leave behind

and pays workers in worthless pesos. Foreigners who

decide to reward good workers without state approval

can face prison."

Edited by John_S_in_Penna (see edit history)
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I find it odd that countries with oppressive regimes have not stopped people from visiting the Great Wall of China or St. Petersburg, Russia. My holidays this year began with a bad cold that had me stuck in bed for about 10 days so, after reading about the Museum's Cuba trip, the time was spent studying Cuba, particularly Havana. Cuba had always been off my travel radar, given both by the U.S Embargo that's been in place since I was four-years-old, and the general bad press about the place that we've been fed. In the meantime the rest of the World has been beating a path there, be it for luxury resort getaways or more modest vacations.

Having discovered Santo Domingo's Zona Colonial on a business trip to the Dominican Republic last April, my long-time enjoyment of Spanish Colonial architecture and historic, walled fortress cities has been rekindled. I like photographing such places, whether they're restored and pristine or decaying to the point of being ruins; subsequent trips to the DR have only whetted my appetite for more, and Havana (plus Cienfuegos, Trinidad, and Santiago de Cuba, among others) beckons.

Many have noted the expense of the Museum's trip, that it can be done cheaper, but let's remember that this is also a fund-raiser for the Museum. That the trip is built around Cuba's colorful car-culture will make for some amazing photo-ops, even if the subjects are considered to be "Frankensteins". Will it stop Cubans from risking their lives to leave their homeland for better living conditions? Certainly not, nor does anyone expect such an outcome. From a purely cultural exchange, it should be very exciting to learn about a place that's been off-limits (to most of us Americans, at least) for more than half a century.

That said, I really like the DK Eyewitness Cuba Travel Guide with its neat pictures, isometric views of important buildings, and historical info. It's a great study guide whether you're going on a package tour or striking out on your own (not a good idea until restrictions are eased).

There's some insightful reading in "What's On Havana!", published by a UK/Canadian couple who travel there often.

Their site is Cuba Absolutely.

TG

Edited by TG57Roadmaster (see edit history)
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Tg57Roadmaster, from my understanding, countries with

oppressive dictatorships still admit visitors because they

love the strong Western currency--which usually goes into

the pocket of the leader or the upper echelon.

Such regimes are typically very wary of Westerners, and

keep them under secret surveillance, as my previous posting

states. They also like to post a false attractive facade so

you'll tell others how "wonderful" their country was when you

get home: just as Hitler did for visitors to the 1936 Olympics,

or like people in current times who have believed the myth of splendid

Cuban health care.

Romanian dictator Nicolae Ceausescu, when he visited the R. H. Macy

department store in New York on an official tour of the U. S., was

amazed at the wealth of products on display. Accustomed to deception,

he thought it was a made-up display prepared just for his arrival!

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