I have bought from several sources and the only one I use now after the great Chicago CC disaster is Puroexpress. They are the only ones that kept their shipment guarantee and I have only received authentic CC in great condition from them
Big thumbs up. In fact, I just got a shipment from them two days ago and ordered a box of Gran Endmundo today.
They are definitely NOT the only ones to keep their shipment guarantee after the Chicago massacre........
Puro Express (and their sister sites Cigar Export and some others in foreign languages) are owned by the Rolf brothers (Sam and Bjorck), who are indeed HSA authorized duty-free retailers off the coast of Spain.
For their online businesses, they use a bonded warehouse, in Switzerland, where they deal heavily in the gray-market. It's all perfectly legit product....... just know that they never actually lay hands on your stuff..... they buy it at auction, it gets shipped to their warehouse, and shipped straight to you from there.
This is my problem with them....... you almost always get very FRESH product (very little or no age at all) and nobody has inspected anything, so you CAN get damaged and/or moldy cigars and nobody will know it until the end customer (and they just had a major mold problem in their warehouse last year, by the way). When they DO run into these problems...... they've recently become notorious for slow responses... though they DO fix them in the end.
I know they're a TINY bit cheaper than some of the other big players in the online market......... but you definitely get what you pay for....... I'd rather spend 5 percent more and get open, inspected, padded and shrink-wrapped cigars where I choose the exact box code from an inventory list................. that's just me.
Example: I just bought a box of VR Familiar...... I paid 187.00 (versus 181.39 on Puro Express).......... but I got a 2001 box that was opened and inspected to find me the darkest 2001 wrappers available from a couple choices, padding added inside the box to prevent damage in shipment, a boveda pack added, the whole thing shrink-wrapped... and NOT shipped from Switzerland so I don't have to mess with Chicago Customs (I'm one of the bad-boys that got the BAD letter in the past... and the we-took-your-stuff letter this time).
So... I ask..... is that worth the extra 5 bucks and change? ABSO-FRIGGIN-LUTELY it is!
Again...... PE and CE are very legit and you can get cheap, young Cuban cigars from the Bjorcks...... but they're just not the best option available IMHO.
But PLEASE don't spread the VERY INCORRECT statement that these guys were the ONLY vendor to maintain their guarantee after the recent confiscations.... that is just plain FALSE and based largely on one other Swiss-bonded vendor that royally screwed some folks (another I don't personally use for the same reasons stated above). FACT is... the VAST VAST VAST majority of vendors HONORED their guarantees... some even bending over backwards, for customers, in a lot of ways......