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A British traveling magazine has published the list of top 50 best neighborhoods around the world according to parameters such as art, culture, and food.
British traveling magazine Time Out has chosen Old Havana as one of the most interesting places to visit in the world, coincidently, the same year that the city celebrates its 500th anniversary of foundation.
“The ancient Spanish colonial roads of tutti-frutti mansions and apartments are packed with roadside music bars, fruit and veg sellers and pedicabs, and picturesque corners smell of crushed fruit, freshly brewed coffee, tobacco, and diesel,” the article says about its charms.
The publication goes on to describe it as “somewhere you’re sucked into and will find it hard to leave” and highlights the vivid and harmonious architecture styles and buildings that coexist there, with its primped up plazas, ragged buildings, baroque churches, alfresco cafés, cool bars, shops, galleries and creative neighborhoods.
Ranking 39 in the list, Old Havana shares pages next to other iconic places such as Strasbourg-Saint-Denis in Paris, Astoria in New York or Poblenou in Barcelona. The selection is based on the opinion of 27,000 people around the world and also experts and collaborators of the magazine.
On Nov. 16 Havana will celebrate 500 years since its founding. As part of the celebrations, the Cuban government has implemented a restoration program all around the city including avenues and urban areas not localized in the neighborhood.
Tourism has become one of the key economic sectors for the island, this why United States President Donald Trump's hostility towards Cuba has targeted this industry.
The Republican administration's resumed hostility towards Cuba began with the application of apparently small restrictions on U.S. citizens' trips to the island. On the first moment, licenses for passenger and recreational cruisers, authorizations for educational group visits, and licenses to private airplanes were removed.
Subsequently, however, punitive actions became tougher as the White House began to reinforce instruments aimed at halting foreign direct investment flows towards Cuba, a socialist country which has been attracting significant European investments in its tourism sector since the 1990s.
If Cuba had received the income it ceased to receive as a result of U.S. sanctions, its gross domestic product would have grown by an average of 10 percent over the past 10 years, Cuba's Foreign Minister Bruno Rodriguez denounced last week.
Although the damage is large, the U.S. will get "no political concession from our government. They have failed for six decades and they will continue to fail," he added.