The Basics Drinking Out

Casa Bacardí: Bigger, Better, Greener

Casa Bacardí in Puerto Rico.

There’s a reason why Casa Bacardí is the second most visited tourist destination in Puerto Rico: Built in 1958 in the town of Cataño, it’s the largest rum distillery in the world and produces about 85 percent of BACARDÍ® rum. It was christened the Cathedral of Rum by then-governor Luis Muñoz Marín and has been open to guests for more than 50 years.

A lot of rum is made—and kept—at Casa Bacardí

Despite its rich history, Casa Bacardí is committed to updating and modernizing its offerings and environmental practices. Wesley Cullen, the general manager of the visitor center, talks about the tour experience and some of the ways in which Bacardi is leading the way.

Picking the Best Tour for You

Casa Bacardí now offers three tours to reflect visitors’ changing interests in rum and cocktails. First, there’s a traditional historical tour, during which guests learn about the past, present and future of the rum. Two additional tours have recently been added: a rum tasting tour, during which guests can sample the finest rums in the BACARDÍ portfolio, and a mixology tour that puts visitors behind a newly built bar facility to learn how to make three legendary rum cocktails, the Cuba Libre, Mojito and Daiquiri.

No Straws, No Problem

Casa Bacardí is a great place to enjoy a Cuba Libre, Mojito or Daiquiri.

Visitors to Casa Bacardí will notice their cocktails are served straw-free, as plastic straws are one of the world’s top ocean pollutants. It’s part of the companywide “Good Spirited: Building a Sustainable Future” initiative. The 127-acre Casa Bacardí is surrounded by the San Juan Bay and the Old Bayamón river channel, and its no-straws policy is an effort to keep those bodies of water, and the marine life that inhabit them, safe and clean.

It’s Good to Be Green

One of Bacardi’s core values is to make its rum production as sustainable as possible. As such, a number of energy-saving practices have been put into place at Casa Bacardí. Since the early 1980s, the distillery has used a patented anaerobic water treatment system, which naturally produces biogas (a fuel that’s used in the distillery’s boilers to produce steam). The use of biogas reduces the facility’s fuel oil consumption by 40 percent.

Other on-site green initiatives include the use of energy-producing 200-foot-tall wind turbines, which reduce Casa Bacardí’s CO2 emissions by 800 tons per year, and a system for the treatment and reuse of the facility’s water.