Traveler Spotlight: Alli Gulliver’s First Inner Circle Adventure to Cuba

March 8, 2019 • By THIRDHOME


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THIRDHOME member Alli Gulliver just returned from Cuba on Mariel Hemingway’s Hidden Havana Adventure – See what she has to say about this extraordinary experience.

“Mariel Hemingway’s Hidden Havana” was our first THIRDHOME Adventure and it will certainly not be our last! We arrived in Cuba with certain preconceived notions about the country and we departed with completely altered and improved impressions.

Wade Shealy in a car Cuba Unique architecture in Cuba

We entered Cuba on the basis of “Supporting the Cuban People” and THIRDHOME left no stone unturned as they exposed us to the stunning culture and beautiful artistry of these wonderful people. We toured a cemetery and art gallery and also attended a popular nightclub which doubled as an art gallery. We visited the gallery and home of a well-known artist and enjoyed a private performance of a young dance troupe. We were able to have lunch with a famous radio announcer and drinks with a popular musical artist. This all in addition to the more common yet also incredible tourist attractions such as the Partagas Cigar Factory and Ernest Hemingway’s favorite bar, Floridita. The main highlight for us was the private cigar and rum pairing activity, which also impressed members who had never smoked a cigar before!

THIRDHOME Members rolling cigars THIRDHOME Members touring the streets of Havana, CubaEvery restaurant was carefully chosen and exposed us to the wide range of culinary skills to be found in this fascinating country. We also enjoyed a special cooking and mojito making class in a much beloved local restaurant outside of Havana.

Gourmet breakfast at the private villas Traditional Cuban dish

Mariel Hemingway was charming and very approachable and her insights into her grandfather’s life and legacy were invaluable and impressive. We were given unprecedented access to his home, Finca Vigia, and the opportunity to meet and speak in detail with the grandson of Gregorio Fuentes. Both very intimate and extraordinary experiences that brought so much of what we had read previously to life.

Mariel Hemmingway sharing stories at lunch Mariel Hemmingway with THIRDHOME members

Our guides were impressively knowledgeable and their command of the English language was flawless. They answered our many questions with great insight and honesty. We truly felt as if we were being given an insider view into this interesting and somewhat complicated culture.

Stephan Haas and cuban driver guide THIRDHOME Adventure tour guides

THIRDHOME Members in Cuba with Mariel Hemingway

Our villa was charming and comfortable and every morning we started with an impressive breakfast buffet. The villa staff were attentive and pleasant. Our group dynamic was one of instant chemistry and mutual enjoyment. We have no doubt that we will remain friends with the people we met on this trip and all of us hope to plan travel together again soon.

THIRDHOME Members enjoying breakfast at their villaMariel Hemmingway entertaining THIRDHOME members at the villa

THIRDHOME Members driving in a vintage cuban car

We cannot speak highly enough of this experience and the unbelievable attention to detail by THIRDHOME. It is unusual to travel for a week and find nothing to fault. The movement of a group of 30 people was seamless and smooth and the itinerary was extremely well rounded and considered. Our Cuba experience was both memorable and influential. We would not hesitate for a minute to travel with THIRDHOME Adventures again.

Cuban Cabaret at the TropicanaTHIRDHOME Members walking into Finca Vigia

Alli and Richard Gulliver in CubaAlli is a longtime THIRDHOME member and loyal traveler to our Adventure & Custom Travel Division. 

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