The XXth Habanos Festival Showed the best of Habanos in 2018

In 2017 Habanos s.a. reported 12% growth in sales

There are 144 Casa del Habano boutiques worldwide and 5 of them Kaliman Caribe manages within Bulgaria, Armenia and Albania; as well as 14 Cohiba Atmosphere Sofia being one of the top licensed Habanos representatives of the 14 in total around the globe

Five days of diverse activities marked two decades of success at the Cuban cigar Festival Habanos, which is traditionally held in Havana. More than 2000 guests fond of Cuban masterpieces from over 70 countries became part of the emotional celebration.

The Festival presents Habanos as a symbol of tradition and exclusivity, raises the value of the whole process of Cuban cigars and the emotion and enjoyment of the world's best tobacco. All activities during this special week aim to promote the Cuban cigars culture by tracking all the processes: from the agricultural part and the work of the vegueros through the tobacco producers who care for the preservation and the aging produce, till the craftsmanship and the art of the torcedors. All processes are entirely hand made and require dedication.

Among the most interesting activities are the visits to plantations and factories, where guests can get acquainted with some specifics and touch the magic of creating the Havana cigar. The route also includes visits to harvesting and processing, sorting and aging of tobacco leaves.

Additional activities in the program include thematic evenings with exclusive presentations of new products, master classes for cigar wrapping, Habanos Sommelier contest, as well as international seminars with theoretical sessions that presents Habanos as a mix of tradition and authenticity. The seminar is of outstanding cultural importance, giving in-depth knowledge in the sphere.

The Habanos Sommelier contest is gaining increasing popularity and international reputation. It gathers the most prominent representatives in the profession and challenges them for their knowledge: cutting, lighting and serving a cigar as well as a combining it with drinks and cocktails. The winner of the XVII edition of the International Habanos Sommelier Contest is the British Darius Namdar.

This year's Habanos World Challenge, the first of its kind, which assesses the knowledge and skills of Habanos lovers all over the world. The winners of the pilot edition were Alexis Tsielepis and Rafi Der Gara Btian from Cyprus after a challenging competition with two ladies from Cuba.

The evening celebrations are ones of the most awaiting ones within the Festival, each of which is organized in a different place and goes under the name and presentation of an exclusive cigar edition. El Laguito's ballroom was the chosen venue for the opening night of the 20th Habanos Jubilee Festival with the flagship of Cohiba Reserva Cosecha 2014 in the Robusto format.

Marti Theater and Grand Theatro de la Habana were the places chosen for the presentation of the special humidor edition for the Festival –  Romeo y Julieta Grand Churchills (56 x 190 mm). The edition is unique and in a limited amount of 450 humidors. Guests also had the opportunity to taste another special vitola – Hoyo de Monterrey Le Hoyo Río Seco (56 x 140 mm).

The most emotional is the Gala Dinner of the closing night, which this year was dedicated to Partagas. The culmination of the ceremony was the launch of the exclusive Linea Maduro series in the brand portfolio, which includes two new vitolas: Maduro N2 (55 x 120 mm) and Maduro N3 (50 x 145 mm) as well as Maduro N1 (52 x 130 mm) launched for the first time in 2015 specifically for La Casa del Habano. Now it joins the standard portfolio, creating this new line. The dark color of the cigar wrapper is the result of an additional fermentation period.

Attendees also enjoyed outstanding music performances by internationally acclaimed artists, emerging stars in Cuban music, as well as the well-known Cuban National Ballet and the Cuban National Circus. The musical peak and the impressive end of the Gala was put by Orishas, which rejoiced the crowd with unique Cuban rhythms.

To keep the tradition the Festival ended with a humidor auction. Seven were the fine creations full of cigars, and the money raised from their sale amounted to 1 485 000 euros and was donated to the Cuban healthcare system.

During the evening, the program was rich with a variety of activities, and the Habanos Awards ceremony also contributed to the high level of emotions.