Rio de Janeiro Guide during Carnival [Brazil]

Written by François Correia

“It’s one of the places left in the world where people still live with a big charge of poetry on a daily basis.” – Vincent Cassel

That tells a lot about a city, don’t you think? Rio is indeed a very exhilarating and raw place – full of energy and with an indulgent joy for living. Carnival is one of the city’s most colorful cultural expressions, a time when everyone becomes a party king or queen.

With a thriving food scene, new hotels, and incredible weather the city welcomes the adventurer traveller to a 5 day of endless partying. Here I share an inside guide to some of the coolest experiences to have in Rio de Janeiro.

hotel santa teresa rio de janeiro brazil

Hotel Santa Teresa

Where to Stay

hoel arpoador ipanema rio de janeiro suite sea brazil

The stunning views from Hotel Arpoador

Rio de Janeiro is vast and there are plenty of stunnings views to be amazed by – from the golden beaches of Ipanema and Leblon to the bohemian hills of Santa Teresa.

Hotel Santa Teresa is located in one of the most bohemian hoods in tow. The hotel has one of the best pools & fine dining in Rio.

Hotel Arpoador, has been recently refurbished by modern Brazilian hotelier Daniel Gorin. The hotel has jaw dropping views of Ipanema and is barefoot luxury at its most elegant.

Janeiro Hotel in Leblon is the hospitality venture of fashion designer Oskar Metsavaht from brand Osklen. Luxury and refinement in a very cool way.


Other places I love






hotel arpoador ipanema rio de janeiro carnival
hotel arpoador ipanema rio de janeiro carnival
Hotel pictures by François Correia

Where To Eat

Oteque restaurant rio de janeiro brazi e

Otoque (above and right)

Rio has a thriving gastronomic scene – way beyond the feijoada and barbecued steak houses.

Oteque is the “carioca” project from chef Alberto landgraf, focusing on high quality ingredients with an elegant yet casual service, Alberto and his team take inspiration from nature’s purity.

Oteque restaurant rio de janeiro brazil e

Pabu Izakaya, is a “traditional” japanese sushi bar with a very carioca vibe – find the best tonkatsu, chirashi and karaage here.

South Ferro in the gastronomic hood of Botafogo is the adventure of New Yorker chef Sei Shiroma in Rio – bringing his West Village heritage to the city.

Also try





Pabu leblon japanese restaurant rio brazil carnival e

Left: Pabu Izakaya // Right: South Ferro

south ferro botafogo rio carnival

Where to Party

If you are in Rio, one shall let go of any inibitions and jump heads first into the casual and happy energy of the party scene. Carnival is the moment Brazilians let go of any social and political challenges and enjoy the days that appear to be endless! There are parties in the most iconic places in town – from the luxurious Belmond Copacabana Palace Ball to the street parades and free music gatherings happenings everywhere in town. Baile da Arara by creative agency Arara Inc is the to-go-to party should you have a flair for performative spontaneous dance moves.  Carna Geralda is another fabulous party to dance to until dawn – properly fancy dressed in one of the many local styles: glitter, feathers and sequins galore to cover the parts of your body you wish to keep mysterious – or not.



baile da arara santa teresa rio de janeiro brazil carnival e

Left & Right: Baile da Arara – Santa Teresa

carna geralda party carnival rio lucas bori
carna geralda pedro igor party carnival

Where To Drink

Rio de Janeiro has a trove of incredible bars and drinking options – from fine mixology to an international craft beer & gin culture.

Teva Bar is a vegan bar and restaurant that is a charm, with organic spirits and nice crowd.

Bar da Laje is definitely one of my favourites. In the Vidigal shantytown with abundant views of Rio.

Other great waterholes






Bring it home


bar da laje vidigal rio de janeiro carnival

Left: Bar da Laje // Right: Teva Vegan Bar

Teva vegan bar restaurante ipanema rio brazil carnival

Where To Shop

handred studio fashion rio de janeiro brazil carnival

Handred Studio

The climate is hot and the fashion entrepenuers in the city are clever enough to dress you up in light fabrics – silks and linens. Brands range from the tailored craftmanship style to the sustainable, vegan and genderless take on fashion to provide the ultimate confort to very tuned-up concious local consumers.

Handred, is a phenomel brand that draws inspiration from Brazilian craftmanship and fabrics. The looks are sharp and garment detailing exquisite. is a take on sustainable fashion. Collections are by supplies of new recycled fabrics rather then the season. Cool like the cariocas.

Dress like a local in




handred fashion brand rio de janeiro carnival

Left: Handred Studio // Right:

Ahlma fashion rio de janeiro vegan carnival e

Written by François Correia for Trendland