Destination Guide

Sao Paulo

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Courtesy of Hotel Unique

At its core, Sao Paulo is an unabashedly optimistic place, with a diverse population, striking architecture and a thriving contemporary art scene. In some ways, it is Rio’s charmingly flawed younger sibling, attempting to buck tradition at every turn while also emulating its older sister’s best qualities—and doing so with lovable flair.


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Suite at Hotel Fasano, São Paulo, Brazil

Hotel Fasano

The Fasano family has been synonymous with top-end hospitality and gastronomy in Brazil since 1902, when Italian immigrant Vittorio Fasano opened his first restaurant, Brasserie Paulista, in São Paulo. The family's flagship hotel is saturated with archetypal Italian elegance in a 1930's style Modernist (yet discreet) building covered in an English red brick façade that hides travertine marble walls and antique furnishings that evoke a bygone era of post-Great Depression glamour.

The unorthodox lobby is peppered with Art Deco-era chandeliers over vintage leather armchairs – handpicked one-by-one by owner Rogério Fasano and famed Brazilian architect Isay Weinfeld in antique shops across England and France. The bar is placed front and center; the reception, flanked by a startling vintage World War II world map used by the US Army, is completely out of view behind the bar's back wall as to shield guests from the more public lobby. Bareto, the intimate jazz bar, is hidden away to the left; Fasano, the award-winning signature restaurant, occupies similar real estate to the right.

Each of the hotel's 20 floors is home to just four rooms, all acoustically-retrofitted for soundproof solitude. The subdued décor provides an air of days gone by, with retro furnishings (Art Deco nightstands, Eames chairs) and Italian embellishment (white marble bathrooms, Venetian-framed paintings, Murano vases). Jardins Europa, the city's greenest and most lavish neighborhood, is exquisitely framed outside each of the hotel's 60 rooms and suites. A rooftop pool, fitness center and small spa claim similar points of view.

Throughout the hotel, no detail is left to chance – even the fire extinguisher signage comes across as fine art rather than obnoxious adherence to fire codes.

aerial view of U-shaped large hotel with pool in center courtyard and surrounded by dense trees

Palácio Tangará

Read Indagare's review of Palácio Tangará, a true oasis in one of São Paulo’s celebrated green spaces.

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