Cigar Culture and Lifestyle in Kenya

Although smoking cigars is not rocket science, the art of cigar smoking is commonly associated with rich and wealthy individuals and this can’t be further from reality. Cigars are luxurious as history depicts. By the 1600’s cigars had been introduced into Spain and having even a single cigar stick was associated with a symbol of conspicuous wealth. Two centuries later, luxurious hotels and trains were held in high regard if they had smoking lounges and smoking carriages respectively, as cigars were being smoked by French and British nobles, royalties and war veterans. In fact, Winston Churchill, a well-known cigar aficionado, had high regards for the puff and only smoked privately labelled Cuban cigars.

Smoking cigars require a certain level of mastery infused with a delicate touch, which qualify to be identified as cigar smoking etiquette or cigar smoking ritual. There is no doubt that smoking cigars is a luxurious and costly hobby, but those who see the fun in indulging in this exercise, open their doors to a very rich lifestyle, culture and tradition that is well associated with relaxation, celebration and light conversations among friends. Rest assured that cigar aficionados are not pursuing just a mere nicotine buzz. 

The cigar smoking culture has slowly taken root in Kenya and its only growing day after day.  Most of the cigar aficionados in Kenya have taken the high road of being collectors of their favourite cigars as well as rare cigars. Being collectors and avid smokers, also requires being in possession of a wide collection of accessories that accompany the art of aging, storing, carrying and smoking cigars.

Another group of cigar aficionados in Kenya have resulted to creation of private social clubs and fashion/lifestyle cliques where they meet, interact and enjoy over aged drinks and premium cigars. Usually these meet ups are not simplistic as they sound. There is a dress code for this sort of thing and a theme that accompanies the activities that would take place. One outstanding activity is the art of paring cigars with premium rum, whisky and wine.

Cigar smoking in Kenya has also become prevalent among the youth who have the curiosity of trying something new. Although cigars themselves are costly, there are small sized cigars like the puritos and cigarillos which are quite affordable and simple to indulge for a beginner. Proper education from the tobacconist also makes the beginner’s first time enjoyable and hence keep coming back for more and eventually advances to bigger sized cigars like the panatelas, demi-coronas and full coronas.

winston churchil famous quote


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