Cuba Tour April 28 – May 6, 2014

A Revolutionary Exploration of Cuban Music, Fine Arts and History

Since the re-launch of the People to People group travel programs to Cuba in 2011, Americans have been legally permitted to visit Cuba on a limited basis. In the summer of 2012, a representative of Lakeshore Music (LMI) traveled to Cuba in search of a cultural exchange. One small concert in the historic city of Cienfuegos on Cuba’s southern coast made this cultural exchange possible and leads to our People to People tour departing April 28, 2014 that will become the benchmark for Fine Arts and Cultural Exploration of Cuba.

This inaugural Lakeshore Music program will be hosted by American music producers Woody Wilson and Neil Birnbaum under the authorization of Cal Cuba Art Project (OFAC License No. CT-18253). Wilson is president and founder of Lakeshore Music, an Arizona-based presenter of jazz and world music, and Birnbaum is executive director of the Northwest Sinfonietta in Seattle, WA. The creative partnership between these two experienced arts presenters has resulted in this multi-faceted cultural experience, including numerous meaningful interactions with locals from all walks of life, to which few Americans have ever been exposed.

Pricing and Schedule

Depart Miami: Monday, April 28, 2014
April 28 - May 1: Three days, three nights in Cienfuegos at Hotel Jagua
May 1 - 6: Five days, five nights in Havana at Meliá Cohiba Hotel
Return to Miami: Tuesday, May 6, 2014

COST:  $3,975 per person, double occupancy
$4,735 per person, single occupancy

Pay Now - Cuba

Download Application Itinerary at a Glance


  • 3 nights in Cienfuegos at the beautiful Hotel Jagua, and 5 nights in Havana at the 5-star Meliá Cohiba Hotel
  • 8 breakfasts, 5 lunches, and 3 dinners. Five Open nights to explore the local cuisine at paladars (recently approved private restaurants).
  • Roundtrip airfare between Miami-Cienfuegos and Havana-Miami
  • Seven private performances in intimate private venues not generally accessible by Americans
  • All activities and events include admissions and ground transportation
  • Baggage transfers and handling at airport and hotel arrival and departure
  • Cuban visa fees
  • Insurance during your stay in Cuba for medical expenses due to illness and accident: $25,000 plus $7,000 evacuation.


  • U.S. domestic airfare to Miami
  • Passport
  • Cuban departure tax (25 CUC)
  • One meal per day (3 lunches and 5 dinners)
  • Independent and private ground transportation for activities not on the itinerary
  • Any baggage charges or fees
  • Travel Insurance
  • Personal items such as internet access, telephone services, laundry, etc.
  • Tips for Tour Guide, Bus Driver and hotel housekeeping.


Any member of the community is welcome to travel with us on this historic tour. To secure your space, please fill out the application packet and submit your deposit to Lakeshore Music, Inc., 1982 E. Oxford Drive, Tempe, AZ 85283, or call 602.679.0590 to make your reservation by credit card.

The Journey Begins in Cienfuegos – April 28 - May 1, 2014

The City of Cienfuegos on Cuba’s south coast was founded on April 22, 1819 and quickly became one of Cuba’s most prosperous cities. Along with its beauty, the city is renowned throughout the Caribbean for its rich musical and cultural history. Our group will fly directly from Miami to Cienfuegos the morning of Jan. 6. Once we clear Cuban customs, we will be joined by university English students for a tour of scenic Cienfuegos Bay. Following the tour, our boat will dock for lunch at the Hotel Jagua, Cienfuegos’ finest hotel, and the headquarters for our time in this beautiful city, known as the Pearl of the South.

Scheduled concerts for our three-day stay include the world-renowned Buena Vista Social Club at the historic Teatro Tomás Terry in central Cienfuegos. Also included are exclusive performances by Cienfuegos’ treasured Concierto Sur Chamber Orchestra and Cantores de Cienfuegos, plus multiple evening concerts at jazz clubs and private paladar restaurants throughout our stay. Every musical artist and group has been hand-selected by the program organizers.

North to Havana and the Cultural Heart of the Caribbean – May 1 - 6, 2014

For nearly 400 years, Havana has been the heart of cultural life in the Caribbean. The city is alive with world-class musicians, artists, dancers, poets and writers, all of which are celebrated throughout the world and Latin America. Our stay in Havana will feature a performance by the world-renowned Ballet Nacional de Cuba, plus an exclusive concert every day by one of Cuba’s most famous classical or jazz artists. Already scheduled are concerts by Camerata Romeu, Cuba’s revered all-woman chamber orchestra. Pianists Aldo López Gavilán and Ernán López Nussa will perform privately for our group, either solo, or with their ensembles in some of Havana’s most elegant venues.

In Havana our group will tour historic sites such as the magnificent Moro Castle, the former Presidential Palace, Old Havana, the Belle Arts Museum, and many other important landmarks of Cuban cultural heritage. Along the way, our professional staff of translators and experienced guides will be available to answer any and all questions our patrons may have as we walk through the streets of Havana. Every activity will include an opportunity to interact with Cuban artists, local experts, students and members of the community to assure that you will have memorable and meaningful interactions with locals throughout the trip.

As Cuban music and art are the central focus our visit to Cuba, we will visit the Institute of Superior Art and meet with its faculty and students. We will also meet with University of Havana professor, Carlos Alzugaray, a world-renowned lecturer and expert on US studies and US/Cuba relations.

There will be a private performance and jam session by jazz pianist Aldo López Gavilán and his ensemble of Cuba’s finest musicians. Other notable jazz artists featured on the itinerary are father and son Alberto and David Faya, legendary percussionist Oscar Valdés and Diakara, and Ernán López Nussa. And, Havana’s premiere jazz club, The Jazz Café, is directly across the street from the Meliá Cohiba Hotel.

The Food – Cuban Cuisine at its Finest

The growing movement of private restaurants, or paladars, in people’s homes is flourishing in Havana. This movement is the vanguard of economic change in Cuba. The best dining in Havana is in paladors along the backstreets and alleyways of Old and New Havana. The restaurants are being reviewed internationally and Havanaphiles are slowly finding their way to these wonderful free-enterprise culinary destinations. Many of our lunches along the way will be taken in paladars. And, for the evening meal, our patrons will be given the names and locations of Havana’s best private restaurants, all within a ten-minute cab ride from the Meliá Cohiba.

The Meliá Cohiba Hotel – A Five Star Experience on the Sea

Our headquarters for the Havana leg of our trip will be the five-star Meliá Cohiba Hotel on Havana’s historic Malecon. Meliá Cohiba is one of the finest hotels in the Caribbean. After a busy day in Havana, Meliá Cohiba is the place in the city to relax, have a cold drink, check your email with available Wi-Fi, look at the sea, or take a stroll along the Malecon at sunset and be inspired by the beauty of Havana coming to life after dark. There is no place like the Malecon in the New World.

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Historic Moro Castle at the entrance to Havana Harbor Historic Moro Castle at the entrance to Havana Harbor
Ballet Nacional de Cuba Ballet Nacional de Cuba
Hotel Jagua on the Ciefuegos Malecon Hotel Jagua on the Ciefuegos Malecon
Camerata Romeu will perform in the 16th Century Basilica Menor de San Francisco de Asis Camerata Romeu will perform in the 16th Century Basilica Menor de San Francisco de Asis
Celebrated Cuban jazz pianist Aldo López Gavilán in his home on the Malecon Celebrated Cuban jazz pianist Aldo López Gavilán in his home on the Malecon
Dona Eutimia in Old Havana is one of the city's leading paladars Dona Eutimia in Old Havana is one of the city’s leading paladars
La Moraleja paladar in downtown Havana is another example of fine dining off the government grid La Moraleja paladar in downtown Havana is another example of fine dining off the government grid
Meliá Cohiba Hotel on Havana’s Malecon Meliá Cohiba Hotel on Havana’s Malecon