Sitting smoking a hookah pipe, eating a chicken shawarma while watching a belly dancing show maybe not in most visitor’s to Cuba top ten of things to do but it certainly has its charms. Cubans seem so wonderfully capable that the only real give away is that they do the show with a little too much style!
El Beduino itself has been open for just over a year now and is still somewhat finding its footing. Located in the ample terrace of a typical Vedado mansion it takes kitsch to a whole new level. Kitsch but not cheesy there is a welcoming and calming environment as you enter through the main house.
In terms of the food it is excellent, hummus (mashed chickpeas), tabbule salad (roasted corn salad, tomatoes, onion, parsley), falafels and tasty as hell chicken shawarmas are some of my favorites but the menu is ample with many more North African, Arabic and some international dishes. It is one of the eternal mysteries of the new paladeres where they get all of these ingredients! My only grumble and this probably is more me than the place is that I am never comfortable sitting on cushions on the floor or even on the low raised tables. All arms and legs getting crossed and uncrossed. This is why I should not have skipped my yoga class!
The belly dancing show is only on Saturday night so if you are in Havana and fancy a fantasy escape or simply want to cash in your wife for 15 camels then look no further. It is very close to the Melia Cohiba and on the right hand side as you go down Calle 5ta (in Vedado not Miramar).