We went to this house as it came highly recommended by some friends and we read excellent reviews of it on tripadvisor. As we arrived, we were warmly welcomed by Lidia and Felix. The house is a nice colonial house in Vedado. Our room was big, although dark and a bit old, and although we had a private bathroom, this was not in the room, which meant we had to walk across the hallway, even at night, if we needed the bathroom. It was a bit uncomfortable. As we arrived, Felix made us sit for a chat and gave us some rum. He gave us a number of recommendations, such as the need to watch out for Cuban men trying to get paid or offered drinks (he called them jineteros) etc. When we eventually went to shower, we found the bathroom was not very clean (something that actually has not happened again to us in Cuba, and that the shower was cold (despite the fact that all houses claim to have hot water, most of the times we only got lukewarm water). We were too tired from the flights in order to complain, but the day after, when we again had to take a cold shower, we did complain. As it was Monday, Lidia told us she'd be able to cook her famous lobster only on a Tuesday night. So we decided to go to see the cerimony of the Canonazo at La Cabana fortress. Felix offered to come with us and we welcomed the offer, as he is very knowledgeable about Cuban history. However, when we came back in the afternoon he told us he had to work till late as he was teaching the day after, so he offered the company of Lidia's cousin, who agreed to come along although he seemed to be extremely shy. When I asked what time he'd come to pick us up, it emerged that he does not have a car, so we'd have to ride a taxi with him, pay for it, pay for his entrance fee at La Cabana, and eventually, on coming back, since we had not had dinner and we'd want to eat, offer him dinner and a drink. In exchange, he was meant to protect us. In practice, we were warned against jineteros but then one was forced upon us. We were so infuriated, we decided to tell them we were tired and left the house saying we'd go have dinner and not go to the cerimony. Instead we went, we negotiated a very good price for the taxi on the way there and back, we enjoyed the cerimony and that was all. No protection needed for sure. The day after, we tried breakfast outside the house. As the coffee was bad, when we got back home to shower we asked to have some, and also some tea. Lidia gave me the only tea she has (green tea, which I hate, and which I drank anyways as it was offered to me as it seemed rude to refuse). She claimed the tea had been actually brought to her by some Italian friend. In fact, the brand was Italian. That night we also had dinner at the house, and Lidia went above and beyond to make sure to cook a lovely lobster that did not contain any ingredients to which we may be allergic (we had warned her in advance). She was very kind indeed. We then asked Felix to call the house we were meant to stay in Santiago to confirm our arrival. Of course he had his own opinion on where we should stay, and instead of saying that the phone call was from Claudia to confirm our arrival on 6 February, he just asked whether there was a room available. The obvious answer was no. Needless to say, I did make a phone call myself from outside, I told the house in Santiago I had made a reservation, and indeed they said they were waiting for me. The best surprise was the bill. You can make sure NOTHING we had in the house was free, not even the green tea I had, for which I paid 1 CUC (yeah, you heard me!!) and which was something the owners never even paid for as they were simply left over bags from other people who stayed in the house. I am sorry, but this is not hospitality to me. I should have been told from the beginning that I was going to have to pay for that - but we learned our lesson and from then on we just asked the price of every single service. Overall, we found the house ok, the room ok although uncomfortable to have the bathroom all the way across the hall, we thought Lidia was sweet but her husband overly pushy towards us.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC