Do Rio Like a Royal

The Art Deco-style Christ Redeemer statue towers atop the Corcovado mountain overlooking Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

As HRH Prince Harry embarks on his Royal Tour of South America, on behalf of the Queen and her Diamond Jubilee celebrations on March 2nd, the world’s eyes are firmly on this bachelor prince and his exotic gallivants. Starting in Belize and ending in Rio de Janeiro, followed by a couple of days staying on in the city for a private holiday, Jacada Travel, Specialists in Inspired Luxury Travel to Africa and Latin Americahave thought about how best they’d entertain a Prince with his time in the magnificent and heady Marvelous City. Because of all cities, Rio is possibly the most fitting choice for a fun-loving Prince. Check out their suggested Royal Itinerary below for some inspiring ideas and leads.

Day ONE
Fly into Rio de Janeiro. In light of Prince Harry’s career as a military helicopter pilot, he’ll appreciate this particularly poignant introduction to Rio; a panoramic and phenomenally-scenic flight by a state-of-the-art helicopter into the striking setting of this city named one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World.  He’ll fly over the bays of Guanabara, Leblon and Botafogo,  the beaches of Ipanema and Copacabana, swinging around the Sugar Loaf and hills of Dois Irmaos before coming to land. Lunch will be then be organised in one of the quaint restaurants of the bohemian hillside quarter (and the city’s oldest neighborhood) of Santa Teresa. Then, spend the afternoon with a trained kitesurfing instructor in the one the bays of Rio’s natural harbour, followed by some jetskiing to explore nearby beaches such as the exclusive Joatinga.

Joatinga

That evening, begin the night with dinner at Sobrenatural, for traditional seafood dishes such as Moqueca followed by cocktails at the Fasano Hotel’s understated yet glamourous Londra Bar. Frommer’s also recommends Espirito Santo for dinner, while for cheap and cheerful Brazilian cuisine, there’s Bar do Mineiro – recommended by the NY Times.

Day TWO

Start the second day with some surf lessons at Prainha beach. A personal guide and instructor will collect you from your hotel and drive you to this, one of the best beaches just outside the city for catching the best waves. Lunch at Sushi Leblon for some of the best sushi outside of Japan. That afternoon you could hang glide over Leblon, or perhaps opt for a private city and historical tour to Rio’s museums, botanical gardens, the striking district of Lapa, the Corcovado and Sugar Loaf, and all led by one of excellent English-speaking guides. A superb way to finish your day is with a hike up Pedra Bonita rock for spectacular views of the sun setting over the city’s skyline. That evening, dine at one of Brazil’s best churrascarias and one of the country’s favorite ways of cooking their world-famous meats on the barbecue. They can then organise for one of our local guides to take you around the lively bars of glitzy Leblon and the glamorous Barra de Tijuca – also referred to as Little Miami. Always playing live music from Bossa Nova to Samba and a vibrant atmosphere, sometimes all you need is a local with the same interests to show you the best spots, especially with a city like Rio that lives for the night.

Surf's up in Rio

Day THREE  

Begin the day with a spot of kitesurfing in the morning or a private art tour of Rio’s best galleries and exhibitions followed by lunch at Antiquarius, one of the city’s finest and most famous restaurants for authentic Portuguese gourmet cuisine. Given the Prince’s love of Polo, that afternoon play a chukka or two at the exclusive Barra de Tijuca’s polo playing fields with a club professional. Pre-dinner cocktails at the fabulous Copa bar at the Copacabana Palace Hotel, followed by dinner at the world-class Gero restaurant owned by the Fasano family and serving fine Italian cuisine (a top Fodor’s pick).

Bar do Copa

Day FOUR – JOURNEYING ON…?
Two or three hour drive south of Rio lies some of Brazil’s best and most soulful beachside towns such as Buzios (Brazil’s St Tropez) or the pretty colonial Costa Verde town of Paraty. Jacada Travel holds an exclusive portfolio of private villas available for hire from sleek, modernist beach houses to converted colonial mansions hidden on secluded shorelines so how about spending a few days relaxing on the beach, by the pool, entertaining family and friends and enjoying local life?

That’s what Harry might do.

Jacada Travel can plan an ultra-luxe Rio getaway like Prince Harry’s from $5,320 (per person, based on two sharing including, hotels, tours and flights from the USA)

http://JacadaTravel.com 

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Total Sao Paulo

From hidden bars serving up $2.50 caipirinhas and tiny boutiques, to the best clubs and vintage markets, Total Sao Paulo: A Guide to the Unexpected (Unhinged Jaw Press) is the latest must-have travel resource for discerning creative types traveling to one of the worlds most up-and-coming cities. Written by Phuong-Cac Nguyen, an American journalist who has been reporting and breathing Sao Paulos pop culture/lifestyle beat for years, this paperback packs in places off -the-beaten track in 10 essential neighborhoods. Sprinkled among the candid, gorgeously shot photographs are also 11 easy-to-read, illustrated maps and 17 interviews with Sao Paulo VIPs who give the inside scoop.

Total Sao Paulo: A Guide to the Unexpected leads travelers through a rigorously edited list of Sao Paulos locally adored restaurants, art spaces, boutiques, street fairs, bars, clubs and other cant-miss sights, like the citys Red Light District and its version of Little Tokyo. The guide has a streetwise and clean magazine-style design (think Tokion, Wallpaper, or Nylon) and is written in a smart, edgy tone that makes it a speedy reference unlike any other travel guidebook about Brazil or South America on the shelf today. Its small, handbook-like size is convenient for on-the-go reading and has a sewn spine for extra durability. Thanks to a team that includes talented, locally based photographers and illustrators, travelers will get a truly first-hand experience of Sao Paulo through their eyes.

Retails for $26.99

www.unhingedjawpress.com

PS. A supplemental online Sao Paulo city guide will be launched in early 2009 at http://www.totalSPguide.com with profiles on hotspots, provocative features and a regularly updated happenings calendar.

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil: The Hot Bar at the Copacabana Palace

Hey little Jaunt lovers, this one’s hot off the press.

The iconic beachfront landmark, Copacabana Palace, opens their new Bar do Copa!

Designed by Graham Viney, who also created the contemporary Planet Bar at another hotspot we recently featured, the Mount Nelson Hotel (aka. The Nelly) in Cape Town, it’s already a favorite among celebrities like Robbie Williams, Kate Moss and Joseph Fiennes. The spacious Bar do Copa is set to be one of the hot new highlights of Rio’s nightlife with a dramatic birdcage shaped entrance and a meandering pathway made from glistening, golden bronze bricks. With walls and ceiling decorated with thousands of intricate fiber optic lights outlining the constellations of the Southern Hemisphere above, the Copacabana Palace Lounge Bar is a spectacular hotspot to see… and be seen.
A range of signature cocktails, including the ‘Copa’ (premium vodka, Limoncello and caviar) and the sexy ‘Negresco’ (black tea, Vodka, Sambuca Opal Nera, and gold flakes) are being offered alongside two martinis named after Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers who performed together for the first time at the hotel while filming the movie, “Flying down to Rio” (1933). Executive Chef, Francesco Carli, has also developed a new bar menu, consisting of traditional snacks with a modern twist. With a busy live music calendar for all days of the week and its own resident performers, the Copa Jam Band, playing classic and contemporary Brazilian songs along with a mix of international jazz and pop, special guests and DJs are invited each week to liven-up the dance floor.

Lindo maravilhoso!

http://www.copacabanapalace.com.br