The value and transcendence of Santiago de Cuba’s Dranguet House makes the institution an indispensable destination in the so-called Ruta del Café (Coffee Route), an attractive Cuban tourist product that is promoted worldwide today.
Last Wednesday, French journalists, photographers, tour operators and other specialists linked to tourism industry knew about the wealth it collects in its permanent showroom, which some call “Coffee Museum”. They were visiting the place to see at first hand the potential attraction this institution may have in the European market.
Dranguet House suggested the visitors the specialized guide where the history of coffee is explained, ranging from its arrival in America and Cuba, the large number of the crop-related edges, processing and tasting of the aromatic grain, until reaching a newly opened room that exhibits the different ways to prepare the famous beverage, among the most consumed ones in the world.
The visitors highly praised all the culture linked to coffee, which covers craftwork, Cuban traditions, such as handmade processing (roasting, shelling and filtering in the coffee sock) and the old machines that are already obsolete worldwide, but constitute irrefutable evidence of the transcendence of this grain in different nations.
Coffee cultivation has linked Cuba and France for several centuries now, a bond that reaches us today through an international project called “Los Caminos del Café” (Coffee Roads), financed by the European Union, the French-Belgian Molongo Foundation and Santiago de Cuba City Historian’s Office, which has enabled the restoration of both the Dranguet House and the old “La Fraternidad” Coffee Farm.
PhD in Science Yaumara López Segrera, Coordinator on the Cuban side of “Los Caminos del Café”, claimed that the works in that old settlement not only will benefit those rural communities based on the precepts of responsible tourism development, but also will become an attractive proposal, because the site will be a living museum, which parallely will exhibit the cultivation and processing of the aromatic grain in its modern and old-fashioned ways.
López also explained that thanks to “Los Caminos del Café” project Santiago de Cuba City has today an institution that shows, in the broadest possible way, how attractive coffee is and its links with the industry, arts and agriculture.
As part of their tour, the French visitors not only will come closer to “Coffee Route”, but will also get to know the attractions of “La Ruta del Cacao” (Cacao Route), journey that will take them to such destinations as Baracoa, Bayamo, Gibara, etc.
The mountainous geography of Santiago de Cuba has great part of the traces of the Haitian-French immigration of the late 18th and early 19th centuries, a legacy that translates into old farms, which are both World Heritage sites and attractions for visitors, since they show the splendor of a time in the Caribbean and a cultural heritage that is combined, in addition, with the attractive nature of the area and the numerous traditions, thus making up a tourist product of one-of-a-kind characteristics.
Translated by Jorge Mesa Benjamin / Cubasi Translation Staff