The facade of the historical building was practically destroyed. So far, authorities have confirmed that at least nine people have died, 30 citizens were injured, and other 13 remain missing.
At around 13:00, the Police reported a partial collapse of the building, which they ruled out that could have been subject from an attack.
"Solidarity and dismay at the explosion at the Saratoga Hotel in Havana. Painful images for our entire nation. Heartfelt condolences to victims' families and full support from our people and institutions for the injured," Cuban Foreign Affairs Minister Bruno Rodriguez tweeted.
Although the hotel had been closed for over two years because of the COVID-19 pandemic, most of its workers were present at the time of the incident because they were preparing it for a possible reopening.
Soon after the explosion, President Miguel Diaz-Canel and Cuban Communist Party (PCC) Secretary in Havana Luis Torres went to assist injured citizens, who are being transferred to local hospitals.
"All of our doctors and resources will be available to these people," Integrated Emergency and Medical Emergency Service (SIUM) Director Carlos Perez stated, adding that several citizens have volunteered to donate blood to the wounded people.
"On behalf of the Venezuelan government and people, I express our deep regret for today's Havana's Saratoga Hotel incident. The solidarity of Bolivarian Venezuela goes to the Cuban government and people and the victims' families and friends!!" Venezuela's Foreign Affairs Minister Felix Plasencia tweeted.
Antigua and Barbuda's ambassador to the United States, Ronald Sanders, revealed that the Caribbean Community countries would consider absenting themselves from the Summit of the Americas if the exclusion of #Cuba#Venezuela and #Nicaragua from the summit was implemented. #VIDEOpic.twitter.com/iAEeusO4Zm