Edificio López Serrano, Havana

The Edificio López Serrano Apartments in Havana, Cuba.

We are fortunate to have a guest post from author and travel blogger Will Linsdell. He has published several books about rail travel and other subjects which you can see on the Hornbill Publishing website (https://hornbillpublishing.co.uk/). Will is the creator of the Wilbur’s Travels blog: (https://wilburstravels.com/) which can take you almost anywhere in the seventy countries he has visited thus far. Among these is Havana, Cuba where his post comes from.

I have always appreciated an aesthetically pleasing building and my appreciation of Art Deco was heightened when I visited Miami in the early 2000s.

Although I don’t exactly go out of my way to spot certain buildings, if they happen to be located where I find myself I will go out of my way to photograph them.

Havana has some fine examples of neoclassical buildings and besides this has a few Art Deco jewels, including the López Serrano building.

The construction of the building was promoted by José Antonio López Serrano, a publisher who ran La Moderna Poesía, once Cuba’s most famous bookstore which stood for over a hundred years but sadly is a building no longer in use and fading fast.

See the Tripadvisor page about La Moderna Poesía here.

The López Serrano building was designed by the architect Ricardo Mira in 1929 (in 1941 he also designed La Moderna Poesia bookstore), and was constructed in 1932 when it became the tallest residential building in Cuba.

Centrally located above the ten stories of the main building sits a tower of four apartments that are supported by ten steel columns.

I took the photo that you see below from our high-rise hotel with fabulous views of the city stretch of Caribbean Ocean known as the Malecon.

An Art Deco tower by the beach.

Whilst the building (like much of Havana’s fine period architecture) is looking slightly worn, it is still a fabulous sight and worthy of any skyline.

The Havana skyline with the Edificio López Serrano far left

One interesting if not entirely pleasant fact about the building regards congressman, senator, political activist, government critic and presidential candidate Eduardo Chibás.

Eduardo was living on the fourteenth floor penthouse at the time that he committed suicide by shooting himself in August 1951, just after finishing his political broadcast on CMQ Radio and a day after his 44th birthday.

A view from the neighbourhood.

Photos and text ©2021 Will Linsdell and Wilbur’s Travels

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