A "casa particular" is a "bed &
breakfast" place where you can rent a room and get meals when staying there.
Though the quality of the
accommodation varies most offer a good room often with a private bath and
air-conditioning. The meals offered are often better and larger than the
ones that you can get in the state restaurants.
It is the best way to experience
Santiago de Cuba: living amongst and with the people.
Most casas still list their prices
in dollars, but as from November 15 2004 the dollar will no longer be legal
tender in Cuba. Payments will than have to be made in "peso convertible"
(also known as "chavitos"). Casa owner will insist on being paid in this
currency as they will lose 10% on all dollars they exchange for peso
convertible, the currency in which they do their purchases.
The casa owners are heavily taxed.
The pay a flat monthly fee per room (U$ 100 to U$ 200) per month and a
percentage of annual earnings at the end of the year.
Their operations are strictly
regulated and they risk losing their license if they do not follow them by
the book. One of the basic rules is that all guests have to be registered.
A registered casa is identified by
the following sign:
OLD (up to 2006):
One of the best mini-portal to
find a casa particular anywhere in Cuba is: