Five Exceptional Hotels in Brazil

Five Exceptional Hotels in Brazil



There
are some hotels in Brazil
that not only provide all the comfort and luxury you’d expect from
a top-class crash pad but their location, ethos or contributions to
the community set them a cut above the rest. Whether it’s running
the business as a co-operative, putting staff through university,
encouraging children to explore nature or giving you exclusive
access to all areas, these five places offer that little something,
often unadvertised, to bring an extra dimension to your stay.


hotel

Uxua

Bahia, Brazil

UXUA’s seduction goes well beyond its idyllic setting in a
16th-century village square on Bahia’s Discovery Coast; its
impeccable design by former Diesel creative director
Wilbert Das
; and its popularity among the glitterati (including
Moss, Kloss and Beyoncé). The hotel has a multi-pronged approach to
maintaining the magic and irresistibly
Instagrammable
look of the beach town. A full-time lobbyist
keeps unscrupulous developers at bay, the next generation of
eco-warriors are being trained up and forgotten festivals are being
revived. At UXUA, staff can learn another language or be sponsored
to get a degree (there are currently two graduates and counting).
Ingenious recycling means showers stand in hollow tree trunks,
sinks are made from scooped-out logs and new materials are weaved
on ancient looms. The local Pataxó tribe have also taught the hotel
how to make objects, such as lamps, baskets and items usually made
of plastic, from river weed and grasses, while every last fibre of
coconut is put to good use.

Address

Praça São João Batista
Quadrado Histórico
Trancoso
Bahia
Brazil


hotel

Cristalino Lodge

State of Mato Grosso, Brazil

The Cristalino Lodge barely cuts a nick out of the 12,000
hectare of primary rainforest that surrounds it. Pretty much bang
in the middle of
South America
and close to Brazil’s western border, the reserve
abuts the Amazon providing a sanctuary for hundreds of species of
birds, butterflies and insects, as well as trees that have stood
there for centuries. From the hotel’s 50-metre-high viewing
platforms, guests have a 360-degree view of the forest canopy and
benefit from the keen eyes and expertise of specialist guides.
Climbing up for sunrise reveals spider monkeys dangling from vines,
pairs of macaws flying below and the rainforest rush hour beginning
through the morning mist. The lodge itself is made up of simple,
naturally ventilated bungalows with outdoor showers. The bar is
built around rock, there’s a beautiful wooden screening room and a
family of giant otters swim past the floating river deck almost
every day.

Address

Alta Floresta
Mato Grosso State
78580-000

This image is on holiday

hotel

Reserva do Ibitipoca

State of Minas Gerais, Brazil

The state of Minas Gerais is not the Brazil that most people
know. Inland and with egg-box-shaped mountains carpeted in
bright-green forests and mossy grass, it’s more
Scotland
than sun-soaked Ipanema. The Reserva do Ibitipoca is a
vast private estate that runs parallel to a national park providing
acres of peace and solitude through which to trek, walk, bike, ride
and hike. At its heart is a square farmhouse that wraps around a
large courtyard, with homely rooms and free-standing baths, fires,
a yoga studio and a star-lit plunge pool. The staff, who have been
given the business to run as a co-operative, not only make
enthusiastic guides but are also practiced in the art of surprise
picnics and spectacular sundowners. There are remote houses dotted
across the land for guests to overnight in and a family of enormous
chainmail figures that once stood on the playa of Burning Man now
live on a plateau among the trees.

Address

Fazenda Do Engenho
Conceição Do Ibitipoca
Lima Duarte
Minas Gerais
36140-000


hotel

Belmond Hotel das Cataratas

State of Paraná, Brazil

Along with the thousands of cubic metres of water that cascade
over the Iguaçu Falls, it can feel like a similar number of
tourists also descend. The Belmond Hotel das Cataratas is the place
to sidestep the crowds and immerse yourself in one of Brazil’s
natural wonders. Not only is the hotel known for its old-school
luxury and white-glove service, it also has exclusive access to the
national park. Once the gates are closed at night and before they
open in the morning, guests can go in search of wildlife or soak in
the spray of the waterfalls undisturbed by crowds. The hotel
organises an array of activities from abseiling to dawn safaris,
dinner
under the stars
and trips to see the arching lunar rainbow that
occurs at full moon. At the end of it all, snuggle up in bed and
doze off to the howl of the monkeys and crash of water, knowing
that jaguars and jacaré are among the only other residents in the
vicinity.

Address

Rodovia Br 469
Iguassu National Park
Foz do Iguassu
85855-750


hotel

Fazenda Catuçaba

State of São Paulo, Brazil

Catuçaba is a working organic farm-cum-boutique
hotel
that wouldn’t look out of place in a period film. Geese
and dogs wander around, piglets play in nearby pens, the cows are
milked by hand and, at the farmhouse, guests are served the
freshest produce from the lovingly tended vegetable garden. It is,
by design, an old-fashioned way of life. Without wifi or much phone
signal, people arrive to unwind and broaden their horizons by
exploring the endless land and bountiful nature, on horseback, by
foot or in the lakes and rivers. Under the umbrella of Casas da Terra, Catuçaba and
its seaside sister, Picinguaba, focus on retreats that elevate your
experience beyond a hotel getaway. There are treasure-hunting camps
for children, regular lectures and an art gallery. They also have
award-winning prefabricated and modernist houses, a bamboo
cathedral designed by Brazilian duo, the Campana brothers, and an
indigenous oca hut built by the Amazonian Xingu people.

Address

Estrada Fazenda Santa Helena
São Luís do Paraitinga
São Paulo
12140-000