516 Duval Street
Key West, FL 33040
San Carlos Institute
The San Carlos is one of Florida's most beautiful and historic landmarks. It was founded in 1871 by Cuban exiles of Key West as an educational, civic, and patriotic center.
The San Carlos is a multi-purpose facility that serves as a museum, library, art gallery, theater, and school. Located in the heart of Key West's historic district, the San Carlos is considered to be the cradle of Cuba's independence movement. It was at the San Carlos that José Martí united the exile community in 1892 to launch the final phase of his campaign for Cuba's independence. Martí so loved the San Carlos that he called it "La Casa Cuba". The San Carlos is open to visitors and hosts many events during the year. Come visit us.
A visit to the San Carlos will take you back to the late 1800s. You will feel the legacy that Varela, de Céspedes, Martí, Maceo, García and many other patriots left us. Bring your children and grandchildren to marvel at the beauty of the buildings architecture and to experience Cuba's proud heritage.
The San Carlos Institute stands as a monument to the perserverance of the Cuban people in their quest to free their homeland and preserve their culture. Founded by Cuban exiles in 1871 as a patriotic and educational center, it was subsequently destroyed by fire in 1886, demolished by a hurricane in 1919 and condemned in the 1970's due to the abandonment and structural decay. Like the Phoenix, however, each time its end seemed near, the San Carlos has risen to new heights to resume its epic role in the history of the Cuban people. After being closed down for almost two decades and coming close to demolition, a beautifully-restored San Carlos reopened in 1992 as a multi-purpose facility that serves a museum, library, art gallery, theater and school. Today the San Carlos glows brighter than ever welcoming thousands of visitors annually. They come to learn about the Institute's history or attend the outstanding programs, exhibits and lectures that are offered throughout the year or just to marvel at the beauty of the building's architecture.