A Dictator’s Dream, a Squatters Paradise
November 22, 2022 6:59 AM   Subscribe

In the 1950s the Hotel Humboldt was built overlooking Caracas, by the dictator Marcos Jimenez. It was abandoned for many years and finally renovated in 2007 and is now open to the public, in whatever way that means in current Venezuela. In 1994, I stayed there while in Caracas looking for a friend. During that time I was with a couple of companions who would be continuing on to Brazil. We spent a couple of days in the city looking for our friend and realizing it was nearly an impossible task- this being a time when we had no internet or cell phones. I am trying to find more information, images, or history of this place!

How we ended up there- we met some jewelry artisans on the sidewalk one day and they invited us to stay with them “outside of the city”. We thought they were interesting and took them up on it. We all hopped into a car belonging to a friend of theirs, a taxi driver, and proceeded out of the city and up into the surrounding mountains. It seemed to take forever to get to the top and then we hiked for a long time until we finally reached their home…which was an old abandoned high-rise hotel with servants quarters which were low lying buildings on the slope behind it. There was a helicopter pad, and destroyed ballroom! There lived a small community of artists and punks.

After a few days with them we went on to Barquisimeto and never returned. So many years later, one of my companions went through their diary and started to write about their journey to Brazil. They had not written much about our time in Venezuela and they asked what I could remember. I found, in my papers an unsent letter that I had written to someone. Scrawled on a paper towel was a good description of our experience there.

But in looking for outside information about the unknown history of the Hotel Humboldt’s abandoned years, we cannot find much.

So Metafilter! Anyone have experience or knowledge of this place during it’s abandoned years?
posted by catrae to Travel & Transportation around Caracas, Venezuela 5 users marked this as a favorite
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