Balneario “Hijas de Galicia”

“Hijas de Galicia” Spa: a milestone of Galician heritage in Cuba

Havana Cuba. — The Galician community founded places of special significance in the largest of the Antilles. One of them was the Club-Spa “Daughters of Galicia”sponsored by women from that region of Spain who had arrived on the island at the end of the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th.

At the time of its inauguration, in 1912, the association was baptized with the name of “Solidaridad Pontevedresa”. Five years later it began to be called “Hijas de Galicia”, a name that was extended to the club-spa, a quiet and welcoming coastal place to which women registered in the clinic that bore the same name and those who did not have access to private medical care.

The Today gynecologist hospital It had been created to provide health services to immigrant ladies who could not associate with the Centro Gallego. The society “Hijas de Galicia” took care of the construction of the clinic in the Luyanó neighborhood and the club-spa, in the current municipality of Playa. Initially, its objective was the solace and recreation of the associates; later it became a space for the meeting and celebration of Galician families.

Built by the architect Aquiles Capablanca Graupera, it was a middle-class club with fixed membership, to which male clients or mixed-race or black customers could not access.

Game rooms and other recreational options were added to the enjoyment of the beach. Galician gastronomy was always present as a way of preserving the culinary traditions of the region. Sports such as yachting, water skiing and tennis were practiced. Bacchanals and baskets were organized for ladies of different tastes and ages; the invited musical groups were made up only of women and the dances had among their objectives the dissemination and preservation of the musical and dance heritage of Galicia. Festive days were also celebrated according to the Catholic saints, and historical dates, or dates of great cultural impact, were commemorated.

After Fidel Castro came to power, the “Hijas de Galicia” Spa-Club was converted into the “José Luis Tassende” social circle for the enjoyment of the working class.

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