By LIM CHIA YING
GUESTS had the opportunity to puff away Cuban cigars and sip on Cuban vodkas and wines during the recent dinner reception hosted by the Embassy of the Republic of Cuba to celebrate the arrival of Cuban tobacco producer Don Alejandro Robaina.
The reception on May 18 was part of the programme line-up in conjunction with the Festival Cubano 2005.
A press conference was held on May 18 at Qba, Westin Hotel Kuala Lumpur, to mark the launching of Festival Cubano the following day.
The hosts for the evening were Cuba ambassador MA Pedro Monzon Barata and wife Silvia Baeza de Monzon.
(From left) Guests Kamarul Ariffin, Barata, and Bioven Holdings Sdn Bhd
Johan Indot chatting with Don Alejandro and Hirochi.
Don Alejandro's visit to Malaysia was at the invitation of the Havana Club, Concorde Hotel Kuala Lumpur. Accompanying him was grandson Hirochi Robaina.
Many took the opportunity to pose for photos with the 86-year-old Don Alejandro who was seated on a sofa in the embassy hall.
Colourful oil paintings dominated the interior of the place while quirky handicraft items and figurines fill the nooks and corners.
Malaysian cigar lovers learned, from Don Alejandro, about tobacco production in Pinar Del Rio, a province in Cuba.
His tobacco production company, Vegas Robaina, is one of the largest tobacco producers in Cuba.
And such synonymous is the Robaina family with the world of cigar that there is a brand called Robaina.
The Robaina family has been involved in the cigar business for six generations now - a heritage which is claimed to be unmatched by other cigar companies in Cuba so far.
The hall was soon shrouded with strong cigar smoke and it was obvious that all guests were enjoying themselves.
(From left ): Ambassador of Chile in Malaysia Patricio Torres with wife Cecilia Torres, and Asian Business Solutions chairman Tan Sri Ernest Zulliger having a good time at the dinner reception with renowned Cuban tobacco producer Don Alejandro Robaina.
Host Barata said a few words in honour of Don Alejandro.All were then invited to tuck into dinner served at the alfresco patio of the embassy.
It was a night of merriment as they partied away with sumptuous food and servings of Mojitos - the signature Cuban cocktail.
Copyright 1995-2004, Star Publications (Malaysia) Berhad. 10894-D.