Hotel Capri

Coordinates: 23°8′31.96″N 82°22′57.35″W / 23.1422111°N 82.3825972°W / 23.1422111; -82.3825972
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Hotel NH Capri La Habana
Hotel Capri, circa 1958
General information
LocationCalle 21 / Calle N, Vedado, Havana
Coordinates23°8′31.96″N 82°22′57.35″W / 23.1422111°N 82.3825972°W / 23.1422111; -82.3825972
Opening1957 (original), 2014 (reopened)
OwnerRevolutionary government
ManagementNH Hoteles
Technical details
Floor count19
Design and construction
Architect(s)Jose Canaves
Other information
Number of rooms220

The Hotel NH Capri La Habana is a historic high rise hotel located in central Havana, Cuba.


Hotel Capri in 1973.

In 1955, President Batista enacted Hotel Law 2074, offering tax incentives, government loans, and casino licenses to anyone wishing to build hotels in excess of $1,000,000 or nightclubs for $200,000 in Havana. This law brought Meyer Lansky and his "associates" in the mafia flooding to the city to take advantage.

The Hotel Capri de Havana was one of the first mob hotels to be built. Located on Calle 21, 1 Mp. 8 Vedado, only two blocks from the Hotel Nacional, it opened in November 1957. With its 250 rooms, the nineteen-story structure was one of the largest hotel/casinos in Havana during its heyday. It boasted a swimming pool on the roof.

Owned by mobster Santo Trafficante, Jr. of Tampa, Florida, the hotel/casino was operated by Nicholas Di Costanzo, racketeer Charles Turin (aliases: Charles Tourine, Charley "The Blade"), and Santino Masselli of the Bronx NY(aliases:"Sonny the Butcher"). After it opened, George Raft was hired to be the public front for the hotel's club during his gangster days in Cuba.[1] It was believed that he owned a considerable interest in the club.[2]

The hotel was designed by architect Jose Canaves and owned by the Canaves family. The hotel, along with its famous casino, was leased to American hotelier, "Skip" Shephard. The Hotel Capri was nationalized by the Cuban government in October 1960, and the casino was closed.[3]

Hotel Capri in 1974.

The hotel was known as the Hotel Horizontes Capri in the 1990s, before it closed in 2003. It reopened[4] in January 2014,[5] following major renovations[4] managed by the Spanish NH Hotel Group as the Hotel NH Capri La Habana.[6]

In 2017 the hotel was one of several sites of a suspected acoustic attack against American diplomats, described as "Havana syndrome".[7] Reports of piercing, high-pitched noises and inexplicable ailments were investigated, but a source of the phenomenon was never definitively determined.[8]


  • The rooftop pool can be seen in the opening scene of Mikhail Kalatozov's film "I Am Cuba".
  • The main entrance and adjoining square are visible in the Soviet spy miniseries "TASS Is Authorized to Declare..." (episode 2, 55:05-55:43), based on a novel of the same name by Yulian Semyonov.
  • In Francis Ford Coppola's movie The Godfather Part II, Fredo Corleone brings a suitcase containing $2 million to his brother Michael at the "Hotel Capri". The movie refers to the involvement of the American mafia in the gambling and hotel industry in Cuba during the Batista dictatorship. The film was shot in the Dominican Republic, where the Hotel El Embajador doubled for the Capri.


See also[edit]



  1. ^ Havana Before Castro by Peter Moruzzi, p.176
  2. ^ Cuban Information Archives, Document 0126
  3. ^ Foreign Claims Settlement Commission of the United States - In the Matter of the Claim of Horwath and Horwath September 20, 1967
  4. ^ a b "Capri Hotel on". Retrieved 2014-02-01.
  5. ^ Classic Cuba: Famed art-deco hotel reopens after renovation Desert Sun March 1, 2014
  6. ^ NH Hotel Group - Hotel NH Capri La Habana
  7. ^ Hitt, Jack. "The Real Story Behind the Havana Embassy Mystery". Vanity Fair.
  8. ^ Broad, William J. (1 September 2018). "Microwave Weapons Are Prime Suspect in Ills of U.S. Embassy Workers". New York Times. Retrieved 2 September 2018.

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