Pedro Murias’ La Meridiana: Cuban Cigars Historic Factory
MONUMENTAL. LEGENDARY. CIGARS BIRTHPLACE
In the late nineteenth century, Pedro Murias’ La Meridiana factory was one of the largest and most significant manufactures of Habanos in Cuba. Located in the district of old Havana – Habana Vieja, on Calle Agramonte, the magnificent building occupied an entire block on Calle Agramonte, covering an area of almost 1,400 square metres. A factory with a great story to tell and the birthplace of many premium Cuban Cigars brands - like the La Flor de Murias Cigars and the El Rey del Mundo Cigars, here we touch on the history of one of Cuba’s most exceptional factories, Pedro Murias’ La Meridiana.
La Meridiana factory is located close to the Estacion Central de la Ciudad Habana - the city’s main railway station, for a good reason. With considerable amounts of tobacco been constantly transported from the Vuelta Abajo plantations to the factory, the railway line that had just been constructed, served as the ideal mean of transportation for this purpose.
Top Left: Portrait of a local in Cuba, Bottom Left: Colourful car on the streets of Havana, Top Right: Stand with fresh fruits in Cuba, Bottom Right: Picturesque balcony in Havana
“LA MERIDIANA – THE FIRST LARGE CIGARS FACTORY IN HAVANA”
THE MURIAS QUALITY – Although today the name Pedro Murias is almost forgotten, at the end of the nineteenth century, Murias was one of the leading manufacturers of cigars in Havana. From Limited Editions smokes to regular production cigars, the Murias name was synonymous with great tobacco quality and construction. Like many reputed Cuban cigars brands, the Murias manufacture was a family business - producing cigars for not only his own company but, also, for his relatives, Antonio and Felix Murias.
Having started making Habanos in 1860, his manufacture was firstly located in a small Chinchal – tobacco shop, on Calle Corrales. Soon after this, the demand for cigars skyrocketed and, with the capital he had acquired over the last two decades, Murias was the first to build a large cigars factory in 1882 – La Meridiana. Overall, the company was in a glorious path - being constantly profitable and, thus, successful.
AFFECTED BY INDEPENDENCE WAR – With many industrialists, manufacturers, and investors leaving the island at the begging of the war, the cigars industry suffered a great deal. In a similar way, Pedro Murias and his business failed financially as a result of the political unrest and the Cuban War of Independence. Tobacco was no longer supplied and there were repeated strikes in La Meridiana factory, making it almost impossible to maintain a consistent production.
Pedro Murias' La Meridiana factory in Havana, Cuba
“THE FACTORY WAS TRANSFERRED TO AMERICAN OWNERSHIP”
THE END OF THE MURIAS LEGACY – The situation following the Cuban War of Independence became increasingly hard for Pedro Murias, and as to not lose everything, he decided to sell the major part of his business, including La Meridiana factory to the English company Henry Clay and Bock Ltd. In 1904, the historic factory was then transferred to American ownership and served as a tobacco warehouse for a few years.
THE EL REY DEL MUNDO ERA – Sometime around 1910, the magnificent building was acquired by the Diaz brothers and used to produce their own cigars. An exceptional brand amongst the Habanos produced there was the El Rey del Mundo brand, which is considered as one of the most prominent and famous Cuban cigars brands to this day. Small in length yet capable of delivering excellent flavours, the El Rey Del Mundo Demi Tasse Cigar reflects the excellence of the brand’s manufacturing process – exactly as it used to be at La Meridiana factory years ago. If you still want to appreciate the manufacturing quality of the El Rey del Mundo cigars but prefer a longer puro, the El Rey del Mundo Choix Supreme Cigar is the right one for you. With a distinctive light to medium flavoured profile, this puro features a Hermosos No.4 vitola, excellently crafted as it used to be at La Meridiana factory. Secure a great and even burn with the Ligne 2 S.T. Dupont Lighter and enjoy a consistent yet full flavoured smoke too.
LA MERIDIANA TODAY – This once glorious factory is now used as a residential building with the former tobacco drying rooms serving today as apartments. The outside of the building is in generally poor condition, however, the rooms and apartments, regardless of being relatively small, they seem well preserved by Cuban standards.
Left: El Rey del Mundo Demi Tasse Cigar, Right: El Rey del Mundo Choix Supreme Cigar
The Cuban cigars industry has a longstanding and complex history. Despite their troubled and intricate past, Habanos have always been excellently manufactured containing only the best of Cuban tobacco leaves. Read more from our latest blog posts and find out now all there is to know about Cuban Cigars Online.