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Chanel hosts fashion show on Cuba's streets

May 4, 2016

It was a special kind of revolution: the first Chanel fashion show in Cuba took place on a beach boulevard in Havana.

Chanel fashion show in Cuba Copyright: picture-alliance/dpa/EFE/A. Ernesto
Image: picture-alliance/dpa/EFE/A. Ernesto

Dressed in bright colors and wearing sombreros, the models presented the French fashion house's latest collection on the open-air catwalk on Tuesday evening (03.05.2016) in Havana. The spectators were local residents, as well as celebrities like Hollywood actors Tilda Swinton and Vin Diesel.

Only those with an invitation were allowed to see the presentation of the 2016/17 collection - many Cubans had to watch from a distance. The balconies and terraces near the boulevard were full of people trying to catch a glimpse of the show.

"Finally Cuba is opening up"

The Paseo del Prado is located in a poor area of Havana. "Finally Cuba is opening up," says Mariela Castro, daughter of President Raul Castro and known homosexual activist. "Everyone wants to taste the forbidden fruit. They all want to discover and enjoy Cuba."

After the half-hour show, Karl Lagerfeld presented himself on the catwalk - as usual in a dark suit, sunglasses, powdered ponytail and black gloves.

The Chanel fashion show is one in a series of international events that have taken place on Cuba since the Communist-ruled island opened up diplomatically, politically and culturally. The United States and Cuba introduced a normalization of their relations in late 2014.