“Los Caminos del Café” project is jointly organised and funded by the European Union, the Malongo Foundation and the Conservation Office of the Town of the Santiago de Cuba, which contributes to sustainable socio-economic development, on the basis of coffee plantation heritage and the regional culture of Santiago de Cuba, with the support of responsible tourism.
The home of the coffee plantation owner, Don Carlos Dranguet, was restored thanks to the project initiatives. This home is now the Interpretation and Information site for Coffee Plantation Cultural Heritage (Centro de Interpretación y Divulgación del Patrimonio Cultural Cafetalero).
Located in the Historical Centre of the town of Santiago de Cuba, Casa Dranguet is designed to promote the exceptional values of coffee culture, and how to protect and highlight these values. For more information on the activities of the institution, take a closer look at the Permanent Exhibition and Café Dranguet, as well as the services provided by the Information Centre. You can also contact us using the form or directly by asking our specialists.
One of the fundamental initiatives of the “Los Caminos del Café” project, focused on the rural part of Santiago de Cuba, is the creation of the Fraternidad Archaeology Park. The Fraternidad coffee plantation has been fully renovated and the ruined Santa Paulina, San Felipe, San Luis de Jacas and San Juan de Escocia coffee plantation homes have been maintained; This park includes a series of exceptional sites combined into an interpretive circuit with both natural and heritage features, offering a unique experience to visitors.
These plantations are emblematic architectural remains that look great, which are still home to aqueducts, stair cases, gardens, mansions, lime kilns, dryers, fermenting tanks and camps, and cover 14 square km.
The area around La Fraternidad is magnificent and full of natural wonders such as rivers, woods, mountains, and various plant and animal species (including some endemic species), creating an ideal environment to allow visitors to soak in this special universe, promoting tourism based on nature and adventure.
The Fraternidad camp was set up and equipped to easily accommodate the specialists, technicians and other members of personnel involved in the project. The camp is located in the village of Nueva Isabel (just 1 km from the Fraternidad site), integrating the site into the local community with staff living there as neighbours, and simplifying local communications, both essential factors.
Sociological considerations are important in a large-scale project such as “Los Caminos del Café”, which is expected to lead to high-impact social results. On this basis, reports are periodically drafted, guiding the actions of the project team for both restoration and conservation operations, and in both socio-cultural and economic terms.
One of the key benefits of the project is the recognition of coffee plantation heritage by the younger members of the community. Activities have been launched aiming to advertise the cultural and aesthetic values of this heritage to children and teenagers with this in mind. It is important to ensure that these groups are familiar with, recognise and feel part of these activities, but above all, that they understand the need to protect this heritage.
One of the essential components of the “Los Caminos del Café” project, is the Interpretation and Information Centre for Coffee Plantation Cultural Heritage (Centro de Interpretación y Divulgación del Patrimonio Cultural Cafetalero), which includes its own Information and documentation centre where printed and electronic texts, mainly relating to coffee plantations and the French presence in Cuba, are available, although information on other topics can also be found.