Photography: Pedro Szekely

Havana is to get a handful of state-run ‘love motels’ that can be rented by the hour, officials have announced.

Sex is an increasingly common sight across Havana’s public spaces, and the state plans to open five posadas to give couples somewhere more private to get their thrills.

Photography: Jaume Escofet

It might sound seedy, but according to Reuters, the need for posadas is tied to the housing shortage in the country, where many families share apartments and divorced couples are forced to cohabit.

Booking private posadas sets couples back around a sixth of their monthly salary – approximately $5 for three hours.

‘We want to revive this service that is in high demand, has a big social impact and without a doubt is very profitable,’ said Alfonso Muñoz Chang of the Provincial Housing Company of Havana. ‘We will start with what we call Hotel Vento, a two-storey building with 16 rooms with bathrooms.’

The first posadas opened at the end of the 19th century and were common across Cuban cities until the 1990s, when the last few were turned into accommodation for hurricane victims. Among the most famous love motels is La Monumental, which will also be revived as part of the scheme.

Read next: How does architecture shape desire?

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