Bailar! Bailar! Bailar!

Lessons

  • Baila Habana – An organization that claims to pay 80% direct to the teachers. I signed up for two hours of lessons. The organization was very good and the administrator/owner Sabine was friendly, professional and helpful as were the teachers/admins that I met in Havana. I was so happy with my teacher Vivian that I asked her to continue with another two hour lesson the same day. Had I not been leaving town I would have continued on with additional lessons. Very good location, very good attitude and teaching. I recommend this school.
  • La Casa Del Son – friends have had good experiences here.
  • Casino Tradicional – Associated with Julio Montere who also does 7 Days in Cuba package tours. I believe they have a school in Habana classes or can hook you up with lessons. Recently collaborated with Elito Revé and the Proyecto rueda de casino group on the Cuba Baila Casino video
  • Marisuri
  • A Lo Cubano - you may be familiar with YouTube videos of Lisandra Garcia dancing. This is her school
  • Salseando Chevere

Dancing

Live music and dancing

  • Cheverie – dancing may be more the focus, but they do have good live bands – we saw El Noro Y Primera Clase there on a Saturday night.
  • Casa de Musica Miramar – maybe the best venue for live timba bands and also good for dancing. Powerful A/C, good cheap drinks, attached BBQ restaurant is good, amazing sound system, spacious. This is the place to be in Havana. Bands like Alain Perez, Habana De Primera, Maykel Blanco, El Nino y la Verdad, Bamboleo, Elito Revé play here regularly
  • Casa de Musica Galliano/Centro – newly renovated and now open with some top-notch acts such as El Hijo de Theresa y la Llegada, Pupy, Azucar Negra, and more.
  • Casa de Musica Plaza – live shows
  • Habanaciendo “piano bar” at Casa de Musica Galliano – this is a smaller related venue just around the corner and up a flight of stairs with live music by lesser known acts.
  • Cafe Catante Mi Habana – I found a hard time getting good listings but saw some good shows here such as Haila in the past. In a basement on revolution square. I believe there are still some great shows happening here such as Qva Libre, Manana Club y Papucho, etc.
  • Delirio Piano Bar – in the same building above Cafe Catante Mi Habana – again I found it hard to get listings but saw good bands such as Maykel Blanco here in the past
  • Olala – only heard about this after I returned from Havana but they have lisings with top names like Los Van Van. Will definitely keep an eye out for this club if and when I return
  • EGREM studio patio – on San Miguel in central habana near-ish to Galliano walking towards Vedado. I only discovered this after it was too late for me to catch a show, but they were offering son and rumba etc shows. Looks good.
  • Salon Rojo – just across from the Hotel Nacional. I was hoping to see El Noro y Primera Clase here but when we showed up it turned out to be Alan Daniel instead. A beautiful venue with powerful A/C, good cheap drinks, food smelled good, and the sound system was good. Spacious. We paid $5 CUC. I would keep an eye on this place if and when I return
  • Cafe Habana - in the Melia has big name shows
  • El Paparazzi – not sure if they are doing shows, but if so sounds like it is worth checking out
  • Bar Saltzucar - worth checking into
  • Dale Play Bar - not sure if they are doing shows, but heard that it could be a good spot
  • El Sauce – not sure if what is going on here, but heard that it may be good
  • Casa De Musica Vedado – I’ve heard that this is more for kids (maybe electronic music?) but would be worth looking into
  • Fabrica Del Arte – not really a timba venue, but we caught Tony Avila there and it was a wonderful time – art/theatre/music/dance/drinks/food/shopping
  • La Tropical – legendary spot, I’ve heard mixed reviews lately – may be a bit dangerous
  • Sangri-La - concerts
  • Don Cangrejo - concerts

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