Chanel landed in Havana, their first show in Latin America. From the moment their boat docked, loaded with aforementioned celebrities and models, Chanel put out all the stops for its "Cruise 2017" collection.
While it was clear to me in Havana that U.S. isolation tactics have failed the Cuban people, it was also evident that their government's tight grip over the economy is the greatest obstacle to life on the island. Therein lies the root cause of many of Cuba's problems.
As the economy expands, the hope is that Cubans across the island will have access to a more varied diet. In a world where so many people still go hungry, Cuba could become a model of how to grow the pie -- and make sure that everyone gets a piece.
Nearly two decades have passed and they are still imposing limits and prohibitions incompatible with development and with life. As if in this social laboratory they want to test what they can do to get the guinea pigs -- which are us -- to keep breathing, clapping, accepting.
Visiting Apretaste!, I remember a phrase I always repeat when I encounter something hard. "Creativity is the capacity to open a window when the door is closed," I tell myself, like a mantra in complex situations.
The day started with a certain nightmarish atmosphere. The little sip of morning coffee was missing, because the seller with a thermos and paper cups wasn't on the corner. So she dragged her feet to the bus stop, while keeping an eye out for a collective taxi. Nothing.
Last year in Cartagena, the message was unanimous: Cuba next time, or no Summit. Obama can again dismiss this message and lose even more influence in the Americas. But the stars are aligning for Obama to make a big legacy move by 2015.
They don't turn iron into gold, but they are skilled at replacing ingredients and adulterating almost every product. The streets are full of glue sticks that, when you press them, only contain air. Bottles of shampoo mixed with clothes-washing detergent. Soap with plastic shavings.
Why, instead of so much persecution, don't they authorize the work of "merchant." Buying, transporting and reselling articles in high-demand should not be a crime, but rather a regulated activity that also contributes to the treasury through taxes.
After being stigmatized for decades, these banned bankers have returned without licenses or pity. As necessary as he is slandered, the moneylender is just one link in the illegal financial chain of our reality.
Even in East Asian countries, with far larger markets than that of Cuba, state promotion of foreign investment was oriented toward the promotion of exports, where competition performs with greater rigor.