Ribbon cutting with Oliva Cigar Co. Marketing Director John Conroy, T.V. personality Dr. Karent Sierra, artist Carlos Navarro, Louis Puig and wife, and Miami Mayor Tomas Regalado
(Miami, Florida) July 10, 2012— This month marks the 40 year anniversary of the Ramon Puig Guayabera brand here in South Florida which was celebrated in grand style with cigar sponsor Oliva Cigar co. The King of the Guayabera legacy continues with his son Louis Puig. The reputable and world famous guayabera brand not only celebrated four decades of style, but also a new location this Thursday June 28th 2012. The festivities highlighted the revamped brand via a by-invitation Grand Opening of the new Downtown Miami store location and include a presentation by Miami Mayor Tomas Regalado.
John Conroy with Cigar roller Jesus Roche
Ramon Puig opened his first guayabera store in Cuba in 1943, in the ancestral home of the garment, Sancti Espiritus, the city of his birth. His attention to detail, cut, and style soon led customers all over Cuba, the Caribbean and South America to coin him "el mago de guayabera" (The Guayabera Magician). The guayabera shirts he designed made of crisp white linen, slimmed customers' waistlines and added to their appearance a look of elegance. As his reputation grew, Puig drove to the major cities in Cuba to take client's measurements, and then made the return trip to personally deliver his custom fitted guayaberas.
In 1968, Puig departed his country and arrived in Miami, with his wife Juana María and his then eight-year old son, Louis. In 1971 Puig was able to open his first shop in Little Havana, next to Versailles restaurant and thereafter a larger one, further west on Southwest eight street. Rapidly making connections in Miami's Cuban and Latin community, he built his business into an International success with client celebrities, actors, athletes and musicians such as Sylvester Stallone, Robert De Niro, Andy Garcia, Alex Rodriguez, Alonzo Mourning, Ice Cube as well as every US President since President Ronald Reagan who began sporting Puig's authentic guayaberas. Reagan toured Miami wearing Puig's garments and rechristened "El Mago de las Guayaberas" as "El Rey de las Guayaberas" (The King of the Guayaberas).
The guayabera shirt was developed in Cuba and has become synonyms with Cuban culture. When Jose Oliva of Oliva Cigar Co. was asked to take part in the celebration he immediately jumped on board. Although Jose himself could not attend due to his prior commitments Oliva Cigar Co. was in full force as Director of Marketing John Conroy was present along with their acclaimed cigar roller Jesus Roche. Event guests were able to sample Oliva Serie V cigars which have been named one of the best cigars of the year by Cigar Aficionado from 2007-2011. A sense of old Cuba hovered around the event as over 400 guests paid homage to the late Puig by wearing his world famous guayaberas, smoking cigars, and trading stories of the late Ramon Puig. The event culminated with a ribbon cutting ceremony which included Mayor Tomas Regalado, Oliva Cigar Co.’s own John Conroy, T.V. personality Dr. Karent Sierra, world famous artist Carlos Navarro, and Luis Puig.
Louis Puig chatting with Oliva Cigar co. representative
Today, Louis Puig is carrying the legacy of his father. “We must embrace the past and understand the direction of the future in order to be successful. We have added updated styles, fabrics and colors to further expand our existent inventory and please our wide customer base. This new store exemplifies the new direction we are taking our brand while remaining true to the dedication and pride my father had for his craft. For almost 70 years we have made the best and most authentic guayaberas in the world, I am proud to continue my father’s legacy.”
Louis Puig holding up a guayabera cake (the cake has an Oliva Cigar in shirt pocket)
The Ramon Puig Guayabera Store Grand Opening /40 Year Anniversary will took place Thursday, June 28th, 2012 6:00-9:00PM at 24 W. Flagler Street, Miami, FL 33130. The event was co-presented by: Bacardi, Oliva Cigar Co. Cigar Snob Magazine. Charity and promotional partners featured include: Neat Stuff for Kids, Sharing Smiles and the Greater Miami Convention & Visitors Bureau.