Dirty Dancing in Havana – My New Year’s Eve at the Cathedral Plaza

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The clocks chimed twelve. I looked into his big brown eyes. Somewhere far off into the distance music was playing. I didn’t notice though, or all the people twirling and spinning around me. All I saw was him. His hand was stretched out. I felt a sensation, like no other felt before, this made me scarred.

I hesitated but his gaze was fierce. I gave my hand and it fit delicately into his. I muttered some apologies. Our dance began. I would like to say that people parted from our path as we span to the song, but they didn’t. We managed to punish a few chairs though. Crash! Another one to the floor. I stammered through the first few steps, the rhythm was fast and rigorous. Breeze turned to wind in my hair and we spun round and round in a blur full of color and light. It was wild, it was fantastic. A massive crescendo and then clapping.

The world righted itself. Javier, the overweight middle aged waiter shook my hand and smiled. Thank you Javier for my very own dance in Havana.

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New Year’s Eve at the Cathedral Plaza was incredible and was by far the best New Year’s Eve party I have ever been to. Book your tickets in advance, at the tourist office (there is one at the Hotel Sevilla) and you will not be disappointed. We were greeted by actors dressed in fancy dress as we walked down the red carpet to the event. Come early and get a table closer to magnificent light facade of the Cathedral, where some of Cuba’s best musicians and dancers will perform all night long. The variety of the music, the quality of the dancing was outstanding.

The meal consisted of 7 courses, with additional side plates, such as paellas if desired. Drinks flowed freely all night. Cava, red wine, all cuban cocktails, whisky and any other drink under the sun were all included. The tables and seats were beautifully decorated and each person received masks and a party bag, which are often given to children at the end of the party. All groups had their own separate table but as the night went on we built up great relations with the neighboring parties.  People got up and dance, some by their tables, others on the stage. A giant magnum was then cut with a saber?! and a giant cake flambe after midnight. After the count down, everyone danced together and the night turned into one massive party. Can not recommend this enough, the best place in the world to spend new year!

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