We had the good fortune of connecting with Anaely Delgado and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Anaely, what’s the most important thing you’ve done for your children?
I have a 5-year-old daughter, and since an early age my husband and I made it our goal to expose her to different cultures, people, cuisines, etc., but at the same time we have made sure that she knows where we come from. She was born in the United States, but both my husband and I were born and grew up in Cuba, so our culture is very important to us and we have worked hard to make sure our daughter is proud of her roots as well. It is my hope that opening her eyes to the beauty that exists in a diverse and inclusive world, while also honoring her heritage, will influence her to be a confident, compassionate and open-minded adult.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I have always been inclined to art. At a very young age I knew I wanted to be an actress, but when I moved to the United States I decided to study Graphic Design instead. The way I see it, both career paths allow me to express and communicate feelings and emotions, just in different ways. I have always felt the need to tell a story and connect with others through emotions and I think that’s what sets my small business apart from others that may be within the same niche. Cuban phrases, words and idioms are at the center of my designs, but every item that I put out there has a story that comes from me and my experiences, and I know others connect with that too.
I came up with the idea of Guanhabana at least 2 years before I decided to launch it and make it public in 2020. Being a mom and having a 9-5 job left me with very little time to work on my small business, but little by little I started creating designs and coming up with ideas until I felt it was ready for the world to see it. My biggest challenge continues to be not having enough time, but I have learned to be patient and kind with myself, and as long as I continue to push my business forward, no matter the pace, that’s success in my eyes. That has been my biggest lesson, to learn to look at my own successes, and not compare my progress to anybody else’s.
Guanhabana is basically me, it’s my family, the country I grew up in and had to leave. As such, I want to make sure that when others look at my brand they can connect with my story, but most importantly I hope they always remember theirs.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
I’m a lover of arts, so I would start by checking out what’s on the schedule at Tower Theater, the Carnival Studio Theater at the Arsht Center, Miami Dade County Auditorium or Flamingo Theater. Those are my go to places when I want to watch a good movie, go to a concert or attend a play. If we catch a movie at Tower Theater, we can have some yummy food at Lung Yai Thai Tapas down the street, and then check out Azucar Ice Cream for the perfect dessert. This is all located on lively 8th Street, so on a weekend night, it’s the perfect place for people watching and walking off that meal while listening to music coming out of all the restaurants.
Another favorite spot for me is Lincoln’s Beard Brewery. This is such a chill place to have a beer inside or outside on their beautiful, mural-adorned patio. This place is family and pet friendly too which is a big plus!
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
The inspiration behind my small business, Guanhabana, comes mainly from my Cuban culture, and I would say specifically my grandfather. Since an early age I would hear him say Cuban phrases and sayings in every conversation. There wasn’t a domino game where my grandfather wouldn’t blurt out something that to new ears would make no sense, but to the seasoned Cuban was just a common phrase. As I got older and left my home country, I realized how important language and idioms are to the preservation of a culture. I’m 34 years old now and it blows my mind that I still learn new Cuban phrases every now and then. Those idioms, and some words that were very particular to the time when I lived in Cuba are part of my idiosyncrasy, and I want to make sure that lives on for my daughter and, hopefully, future generations.