“Which hotel should I choose?” is the most often heard question at Brazil Nuts. Of course it depends so much on your style, expectations and budget, but in this posting we are going to give you our short list of preferred hotels by different price categories, all of which we have personally inspected this year. They all offer value for money and are stand-outs in their class, delivering the experience most “Brazil Nuts” are looking for in their Rio vacation. (All “From” prices are per room, based on least expensive room type in low season).
5 Star Deluxe Hotels There are only two true 5* deluxe properties in Rio, one on each beach. At the top of the list is the Copacabana Palace, still the grande dame of South American hotels and an icon the world over. If budget permits this is the pace for a total experience. The pool area alone is right out of a 1940’s Hollywood movie and you will feel like the star. Not to be missed On the other beach (Ipanema) we find the Fasano… Very new, very cool, very sleek, it is the favorite of rich Paulistas who come to Rio to catch up on their tan. Very boutique style, and well located at the end of Ipanema near Aporador. Personally, its a little too cool for me – and I am not convinced the price/ value ration is right – but its very nicely done. (PS: The Caesar Park was once at this level of “deluxeness”; sorry to say that is no longer the case, but plans are afoot to reinstate it to is previous condition) PS: There is one other deluxe property worth mentioning the Santa Teresa Hotel in the neighborhood of the same name. Totally renovated and super elegant colonial style property wit a killer view over the Bay. This is the top choice there. 5 Star Hotels Moving down to earth, we have the “good” 5* hotels, and our recommendations are both in Copacabana. One of my favorites for overall value/ location is the Sofitel, right at the end of Copacabana where the beach is small, rather exclusive and just 5 minute walk to Ipanema. Ocean View (Deluxe) rooms are a must here (same layout as Street View, but the view is a knockout). You cannot go wrong here. The other options is a 10 minute stroll further down Copacabana, the JW Marriott. Yes this is a chain hotel, and yes the inside Atrium rooms have an inside view, but for style, service and comfort – not to mention location – it is a god value in its class.