Asia House

Built in 1688, the former see of an influencing Dominican cleric in the 18th century, it was turned into a slum in the 20th century until its restoration in 1997, the Asia House-Museum devotes itself to remember the bonds with the Asian world and its culture.

Trade and later the arrival of communities which integrated into the Cuban nationality, are displayed in this institution's ample exhibition.

There is a classroom for people interested in learning Japanese language and traditional artistic expressions from Far East, as well as stores where eastern goods can be acquired.

A tour through the Asia House permanent exhibition rooms shows the Manila Galleon slicing through the waters of the Pacific Ocean, loaded with exotic goods; sumptuous objects for the enrichment of the Spanish metropoli's coffers, which left its trace in Cuba, especially in the city, because the Havana port was a compulsory meeting point for the fleet that guarded and carried wealth to Spain.

The main collections of the 20th century have been enriched with pieces donated by President Fidel Castro, given as gifts to the top Cuban leader.

Different cultural activities take place in its spaces, such as transitory exhibitions, conferences, events, courses, workshops, shows, among others, whose objective is to divulge the diversity and richness of a millenary culture.

It also have a library that promotes literature from Southeast Asia and the Far East, with a wonderful collection about Buddhist topics, as well as a newspaper library with holdings from more than eight countries of the region. Among rare copies, it holds The History of China, by the French writer Du Halde; The 24 Cases of Filial Mercy; and the collection Picturesques Journeys, from the early 20th century. It also holds videos, discs and cassettes about various topics.

Mercaderes Street Nº 111, between Obispo and Obrapía. Old Havana.
Telephone: (537) 863-9740
Open from Tuesday to Saturday, 9:15 to 16:45; Sunday, 9:15 to 12:45
The entrance fee is free.