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A Heart in Havana: Exploring the Enchanting Interiors of Cuba

United States relations with Cuba are undergoing a historic shift, opening up opportunities for Americans to explore the vibrant island. As we anticipate the changes to come, let's take a moment to appreciate the unique...

United States relations with Cuba are undergoing a historic shift, opening up opportunities for Americans to explore the vibrant island. As we anticipate the changes to come, let's take a moment to appreciate the unique interior design found in Cuba. It's a captivating blend of mid-century luxury, minimalist communism, and colorful Caribbean influences. These homes, captured by photographers like Michael Eastman and Werner Pawlok, offer a glimpse into a world where natural degradation becomes art, sunlight shapes architecture, and tile floors become kaleidoscopes of color.

A Delicate Symphony of Glass and Colors

cuba design Photograph by Michael Eastman

In one room, a glass doorway takes on a poetic, delicate form. Its assemblage-like appearance engages us in a conversation between the top paned glass window, the stained glass panel on the left, and the frenetic pattern of the floor. With minimal furnishings, this room exudes an incredible vitality. Don't miss the periwinkle archway and the vibrant red circular wall hangings.

Light as an Architectural Masterpiece

cuba Photo by Michael Eastman

Here, light becomes an integral element of architectural design. The natural rainbow gradient that floods the room is a result of the sun reflecting off nearby buildings. The bright tiles, reminiscent of Middle Eastern patterns, create a playful atmosphere. The records adorning the walls speak to the resourcefulness of the Cuban people, while adding a touch of spirited charm to the space.

Drama Unveiled in Red

cuba Photograph by Michael Eastman

Prepare to be amazed by the bathroom that feels like a still from a Fellini film. The intense red-on-red color scheme creates high drama. But it is the stained glass window that elevates the room to another level of wow. Amidst the crimson, a simple clothesline and a pair of slippers provide a humble touch. Imagine the sensory experience of being in this room, where color vibrates from the brick and the stained glass. A morning bath here would truly be a dream come true.

The Painterly Beauty of Degradation

cuba home Michael Eastman

Layers of peeling wall treatments create a painterly effect, with subtle color variations that give the walls a velvety appearance. This room exudes a refreshing simplicity, even with its intricate details. The clean concrete on the right complements the overall aesthetic, adding a touch of modernity to the space.

A Play of Contrasts


This room is a captivating blend of elements. The black and white diamond floor serves as a visually engaging base, while the ultra-feminine pink floral wall adds a touch of elegance. The glass coffee table reflects the surrounding beauty. Layers of paint, including hints of pink and French-ultramarine blue, tell a story of the room's evolution. Classical European paintings and a portrait of Che Guevara proudly displayed on the wall serve as reminders of the space's cultural context.

Optical Illusions and Balance


Graphic and slightly askew tiling creates an optical illusion, forming a solid foundation for this room. The textured floor and sheer chair coverings help to balance the strong wall design, ensuring a harmonious and visually pleasing space.

A Royal Ambiance

cuba design

The combination of grey and gold in this room exudes a regal atmosphere, even in its current state of degradation. Although we can't fully see the ceiling, the intricate molding and window designs suggest its exceptional beauty. This room is a testament to the enduring grandeur of Cuban interiors.

An Elegant Vignette

cuban kitchen

A stained glass panel at the end of the staircase creates a captivating vignette. The intricate details on the banister and ceiling add a touch of formal elegance to the room. The turquoise wall and stone floor, reminiscent of the Caribbean, distinguish this space from its European counterparts. A beautifully worn sofa, showcasing its rough edges, adds character and a sense of lived-in charm.

Pots, Pans, and Vibrant Tiles


In this kitchen, it's all about the vibrant tile and the lively display of pots and pans. The architectural elements add to the joyful ambiance of the room, creating a space that is both functional and visually engaging.

A Time Capsule of Beauty and Emotion

For those who have had to leave their homes and hearts in Havana, these spaces hold a mixture of dreaminess, eeriness, romance, and emotions. They seem like hallucinations from a bygone era. Cuban interiors, with their dimensional colors and captivating light, are like jumbled time capsules. They possess a detectable quietness, while also bursting with high-energy details. These unique spaces, created by the ingenuity and resourcefulness of the Cuban people, deserve to be preserved as we journey into the future.

Note: The images used in this article are courtesy of Michael Eastman and serve as visual representations of the captivating interiors found in Cuba.

Now, let's embark on a visual journey through Cuba's enchanting interiors!