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Casa Barmarin

Owner interview: Casa Barmarin

You can book your stay at Casa Barmarin with NovelaCuba.

It is Camila Yero’s house, she is born Cuban in Havana City. Since 1998 she travels regularly to Trinidad with Thomas Verwacht her ex-husband, an architect. The couple fell in love with the city and its colonial environment, the bucolic landscapes, and its adjoining valleys. In 2006 they bought the building and turned it into a guest house.

Where?

In Trinidad.

Who will receive you?

You will be received by the managers of House Barmarin who will assure the continuity of the house’s essence in design just as the love and care that Camila and Thomas put into it.

A muse

“Our house is like a person based on a lineage of women’’. Camila and her sisters continue with the initial project. The name Barmarin has a story of its own. It was chosen in honor of Thomas drawing professor in school, Elisabeth Barmarin, revered painter and sculptor from Belgium, and a friend of the family. ‘’The artist has been a guardian angel for the house since day one’’

The soul of the house

The artist Elisabeth Barmarin has been several times in Cuba and visited Trinidad. It was her love for architecture, painting and art in general what inspired Camila and Thomas. She also was the inspiration behind the restoration, in maintaining the original colonial elements, the decoration of the spaces and cohabiting of art and Cuban hospitality.

The initial project consisted of a contemporary art gallery and residency for artists.

During the first years, the couple organized cultural and musical events like ‘’Peña de Nueva Trova’’ where young talents would participate.

The style

What distinguishes house Barmarin and makes it unique is its privileged location in the historic center of Trinidad, its colonial architecture, the peacefulness given by the jasmines that perfume the inner garden and the quality of service from the staff, a mixture of Cuban hospitality with a European touch.

‘’House Barmarin has kept its essence through the whole transformation process’’

Hospitality

House Barmarin is a humane association. The whole team is proud to represent its city and work towards to divulge its heritage.

‘’We want to show the best of Trinidad and Cuba. We are aware that the grass isn’t greener in the city but we also know that without a level of fidelity to the houses identity, Cuban culture and to ourselves, this job would be mediocre and commercial’’. Camila expresses.

The marmalades, the pastries and yogurt served for breakfast are made by the house staff, the sites and activities Camila and her team recommend is because they have seen and experienced them themselves.

Camila´s favorite moment

For Camila, her favorite part of the day are the appetizers. At that hour the temperature goes cooler and the jasmine flowers bloom. ‘’Our minds are still filled with radiant images from the day, but after showering and dress up for dinner and dancing, the evening is riddled with promises’’.

Camila’s favorite place

What is her favorite place? Her heart can’t choose between the internal patio of the house with the jasmines and tropical plants, or the window in the living room that has the view of the street where the market of embroidery and other artisans are.

The internal patio is an oasis of vegetation, a space for life and sharing. From the covered gallery we have a panoramic view. ‘’On rainy days, we can stay there for hours watching the water run through the terracotta tiles on the floor. It’s a place for breathing’’. When it comes to the window in the living room, it’s a typical element of colonial architecture style that was built during the foundation of the city by the Spanish colonizers. Its base consists of a bench where you can sit and observe life in the streets of Trinidad.

Spence of detail

There’s priority in decorating with the local colors. It’s demanded by Camila. The Cuban atmosphere reins in every corner of the house. Camila also has favored hand-made fabrications: from bed covers to table cloths made by embroiders from the Trinidad, even the bread baskets. The tapestries of the lamps are sowed with natural fibers, the furniture and closets made of wood, tiles and pots made of clay, pillow cases signed by the Cuban designers themselves, etc. ‘’It’s our way of supporting the local economy and to showcase the creative talent of Cubans’’.

Places recommended by Camila

La Marinera
A restaurant that specializes in shellfish located in Casilda. ‘’For me this is the best restaurant of Trinidad. It’s not the prettiest but the food is fresh and tasty with the most authentic of services. Maybe the waiters don’t have the mannerisms of a high-end restaurant, but they are spontaneous, attentive, friendly and know that they serve high quality food’’.

The bar at the hotel Las Cuevas
“In this case my opinion doesn’t differ from the restaurant La Marinera. It’s not one of the very best of Trinidad, but thanks to its location at the city heights with a lovely view, in the peninsula of Ancón, and courteous staff, which always makes me want to go back and watch the sunset over the Caribbean Sea’’.

The artisans of Callejón de Peña
Located in the same neighborhood as House Barmarin, Camila recommends all of the artisans in this place. ‘’We have worked with them for years and gotten to know each other, appreciate and discover their abilities. This market is called La Candonga’’.

The little house in the Santander neighborhood.
The workshop of Coqui Santander, the famous family of potters from Trinidad, The Santander’s
Maceo no.443

Gallery-Workshop Deustua
The gallery of the Painter and potter Alejandro López Bastida
Maceo n ° 396.

The Natural Park El Cubano
“Our favorite family excursion. Entering Trinidad, coming from Cienfuegos, it is there with its cascade and natural pool “El Salto de Javira”. It’s possible to reach by car, by on horse it is much better and more fun. The last two kilometers before arriving to the cascade will be on foot through the paths of the tropical forest’’.

Sabine Bouvet
Author Placeholder

For Novela Cuba, this freelance journalist gives voice to those who receive you. She paints house portraits and serves up slices of Cuban life. In search of places near or far and inspiring encounters for travel, lifestyle, adventure, and publishing press; Sabine shows the beauty of the world and highlights those who protect it.

Follow her look on Instagram @sabine.bouvet

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