Rocky Patel Cigar Factory Tour – Day One

Each year, Smokey Butts and I attend a cigar event together. We live 1,500 miles apart but we always find an event somewhere in the world to meet to enjoy the cigar lifestyle. Our annual trips have taken us to Cigar Safari in Nicaragua, CigarFest in the Poconos, Cigarnival in Pennsylvania, and The Big Smoke in Las Vegas, to name a few. These are all great events and we plan to attend them again in the future. This year, however, we decided to go crazy and partake in the Rocky Patel Cigar factory tour in Honduras and Nicaragua. We attended the event on March 5th through 8th, 2014. The best part was that we arranged for 10 friends to join us on the trip.

Before I go any further, I must thank Shami at Burke Cigar in Burke, Virginia, for sponsoring our trip. Shami Rocks! Also, on behalf of the group, a special thanks to Rocky Patel Premium Cigars for a wonderful and educational visit to Honduras and Nicaragua.

The group made our way to Miami from various parts of the U.S. and we left Miami around 11:00 am EST on March 5th. Our flight was a special treat as the travel agent for Rocky Patel Premium Cigars was able to secure first class tickets for us for a tad more than the coach tickets. Let’s face it, everyone loves first class and we enjoyed the great service and food provided by American Airlines.

Our plane landed in Tegucigalpa, Honduras at around 12:30 pm CST. Landing in Tegucigalpa has been described as the “most dangerous”, “trickiest” and “most thrilling” landing in the World. I had heard all about it from different friends but in the end, it was pretty cool. If you can imagine landing while the back end of the plane is sliding out or drifting out, you get the idea. If your imagination sucks, don’t fret. Watch this video:

After clearing immigration and customs, we left the airport proper and were met by our bus driver, a guard, and Patrick Vivalo from Rocky Patel Premium Cigars headquarters in Bonita Springs, FL. As it turned out, Patrick was on the plane with us but had not become our best friend, yet! We loaded our luggage and ourselves on the bus and Patrick was kind enough to hand us our first Rocky Patel cigar and a Honduran beer. We then started our two-hour ride to Danlí. Traveling through the streets of Tegucigalpa was like driving through most capital cities in the Third World, tons of traffic of all kinds, horns blaring, no reason to stop at a traffic light, etc. Add in the mix a bus driver who aspires to be Mario Andretti and we had a great time racing through the city. This was not a bad thing as Tegucigalpa is the murder capital of the world and we wanted to get the hell out of the city as fast as possible.

After a couple hours on the road, we made our way to Danlí, Honduras, a city with around 45,000 residents. Our new home was located in downtown Danlí. Some might call it a villa; others might call it a compound. Either way, our new home had 15 feet high concrete walls around the entire place, a pool, five rooms, a kitchen and dining room, a bar, and various lounge areas. Below are some pictures of Villa Rocky Patel.


Rocky Patel Lounge Area
(Click on photo for a larger view.)


Rocky Patel Pool
(Click on photo for a larger view.)


Rocky Patel Lounge Area with Bar and Fireplace
(Click on photo for a larger view.)

p1040695-resizedRocky Patel Bar
(Click on photo for a larger view.)

We settled into our new home, lit another cigar, and enjoyed Honduran beer and Flor De Caña Gold four-year-old rum. At around 7:00 pm, we received the dinner call and headed to the dining room. Our dinner consisted of chicken, chorizo, beef, black beans, rice, and fried plantain chips. The food was superb. After dinner we returned to our cigars, beer, and rum, added in a little poker, swimming, and whiffle baseball, and finally wandered to our rooms for some rest.

Part Two of C.Gar and Smokey Butts’ cigar escapade.



c.gar loves all things cigar-related. He typically falls in love with cigars that are discontinued shortly thereafter. His first cigar was a Swisher Sweet with a wood tip. Sadly, these are still in production.

One thought on “Rocky Patel Cigar Factory Tour – Day One

  • March 23, 2014 at 4:25 pm

    Thank you Shami and Burke Cigar for sponsoring us on this trip. It was a blast. Next time I’m in the DC area visiting C. Gar I’ll drop by and pesonally say thank you.

    Thank you Patrick for being a great host.

    Thank you Rocky Patel, this was a once in a lifetime trip.

    I had forgotten how crazy the landing was at Tegucigalpa airport. I think I pooped myself a little.


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