Suhad Shtayyeh
Amman, May 4, 2016
by Suhad Shtayyeh

Forget The MET Gala, Karl Was In Cuba Making History For Chanel

All You Need To Know About The Historic Chanel Cruise Runway Show

Celebrities dance the night away at the MET Gala…

Meanwhile in Havana, Cuba history is being made as Karl Lagerfeld hosts Chanel’s cruise collection in the elusive capital on Tuesday evening, May 3,’16. This is all you need to know.

1 || They Are All Coming

In the past few months Cuba has seen an influx of international celebrities. From US president Barak Obama’s recent visit, the Pope and of course Jay Z and the Rolling Stones. Chanel is the first major fashion house to stage a runway show in Cuba in recent history. The Dior boutique officially closed it’s doors in Cuba in 1959!

2 || Not Without Controversy

This show is not without controversy, in a country with an average annual salary of $5000, approximately the price of an inexpensive Chanel handbag. The question remains, 'is it the right venue?' Chanel executives have defended their decision explaining that on the contrary the step aims to highlight Cuba in the best light possible. And beautiful it is, “To live in Havana”, wrote Graham Green in 1958, “was to live in a factory that turned out human beauty on a conveyor belt.” Six decades on, although most of the city is so decayed that only will-power and defiance keep it standing, there is still a jaw-on-table degree of beauty - human, architectural and mechanical. Unlike other Cruise collection venues such as Seoul, Dubai and Dallas. There will be few local sales from this show! In Bruno Pavlovsky’s own words…

3 || The Inspiration

Karl Lagerfeld has shared that his inspiration for the Cruise collection was the “cultural richness and opening up of Cuba”. Although the collection was no real departure from past Chanel collections there was a thread of colorful and jovial improvisation, a reflection on the Cuban people themselves and their way of dressing.

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