Los Angeles Times

Preservation effort makes Hemingway's Cuba home look like he never left

SAN FRANCISCO DE PAULA, Cuba - "Did you see the war correspondent's uniform?" a dazzled visitor asks a companion, as both peer at a musty closet housing vintage garb, much of it martial in nature.

"And the white shoes!" he adds, alluding to the jaunty footwear invoking Gatsby revelry amid the khaki attire and lace-up boots.

Such scenes unfold daily at one of Cuba's most popular tourist destinations - Finca Vigia (Lookout Estate), the 12-acre villa that was the longtime residence of Ernest Hemingway. It's the place that the restless ex-pat author called home longer than any other, for the better part of two decades.

Twelve miles east of downtown Havana, Finca Vigia now houses the government-run Hemingway Museum, drawing "Papa" aficionados from across the globe.

There's no politics here. The conservation project - including the grounds and, crucially, thousands of Hemingway papers - stands out as a singular example of cooperation

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