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THE EL SOL STORY
STARTED WITH THIS CHAIR

chair
Shown above is an authentic cigar maker's chair. It's made of solid cypress...seat and backrest are split cowhide, stained with a tobacco solution. It's over 100 years old and small like the cigar makers of that era.

Back in 1929, the first Smok-A-Cuba cigar was made by Guy Saitta while sitting in this chair. The chair was far from new even then. His shop on 7th Avenue in the Ybor section of Tampa and his chair are still around and so is El Sol Cigars. Original Smoke-A-Cuba Cigar Box Little did Guy or his wife Mary realize when they opened their chinchale that one day their cigar business would be carried on for a time by their son Tony and now by their grandson Bob (present 3rd generation owner).

Guy and Mary, both master cigar makers, worked very hard doing what they liked to do and doing what they did best. Neither of them got past the 6th grade, but they were literate and spoke excellent English. They were also fluent in Cuban-Spanish and Tampa-Sicilian. Guy was born in Baton Rouge, Louisiana in 1904, Mary was Tampa-born in 1907.

Today, El Sol has small, tidy cigar factories in Tampa, Honduras, Nicaragua, and the Dominican Republic. The ledger books have been replaced by computers. The packages to be shipped are no longer tied with white cord. UPS has replaced the post office. Credit card transactions a mainstay. So many changes, yet the product, the cigars have hardly changed at all. The basic concepts and the business philosophy initiated by Guy and Mary are still very much alive.

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