Tag: Accommodation

March 2013, summary of blog posts

March 2013, summary of blog posts


Today’s blog post consolidates texts from all our sources on Brazil published during the month of March.

As part of our series Brazil 10 where we take you on a themed and visual tour of Brazil, we published a series of photos of beach vendors.

Uruguay’s BQB is trying to fill the gap left by Pluna and is announcing the launch of two new Brazilian destinations: Foz do Iguaçu and Curitiba.

An open secret no more; the official announcement was made and Tam confirmed it is leaving Star Alliance and joining Oneworld.

It happened in Rio de Janeiro and it is happening in São Paulo too, where the number of youth hostels doubled in a year.

Argentina’s national carrier Aerolíneas Argentinas announced flights to three new Brazilian destinations.

For those looking for alternative ways of touring Rio, we published a unique and extraordinary way of seeing Rio de Janeiro.

For motor fans, there will be yet another exciting final race of the F1 championship. More details at 2013 GP Brazil Formula 1 – tickets for sale.

And continuing with the big sporting events, we know the date for the World Cup Brazil 2014 final draw.

We rounded up the month with the announcement of a new international route to as Air Canada intends to fly to Rio de Janeiro.

April 1, 2013 | By More
number of youth hostels in São Paulo doubles in a year

number of youth hostels in São Paulo doubles in a year

edifício Copan

It happened in Rio de Janeiro and it is happening in São Paulo too. The youth hostel business is booming. According to trade magazine Panrotas, quoting São Paulo’s tourism authorities, the number of youth hostels in the largest Brazilian city went from 22 in 2011 to 52 in 2013.

Some of the explanations given for the sharp increase are slightly hilarious. The truth is far simpler. With hotel prices rocketing out of control (always on the brink of a new hotel saga), travellers on a budget are having to turn to more affordable means of accommodation.

March 13, 2013 | By More
Rio de Janeiro homestays, a new info resource is launched

Rio de Janeiro homestays, a new info resource is launched

hospedagem domiciliar

A handful of companies have been working for years in Rio de Janeiro offering bed & breakfast accommodation as well as apartment rental in the city. The big news is that RioTur, Rio’s tourism authority, is launching now a website where tourists planning a visit to Rio will be able to find all the alternative accommodation offering in just the one page. The new project is called Hospedagem Domiciliar and it has a version in English.

Visitors won’t be able to make bookings through the new site; rather, they will be redirected to the businesses that provide them. The site contains a section on Season Rentals too – it is somehow hidden at the bottom of the page.

A good starting point is the FAQ section of the website.

With a version in English and in Spanish, and addressing a pressing need for the tourist visiting Rio de Janeiro, we feel RioTur‘s initiative is spot on. Associating the tourism authority’s name to a series of business brands offering alternative accommmodation gives the tourist reassurances. Knowing the companies have official backing should help ease some fears.

What with the massive events of the coming years, the search for affordable accommodation in Rio de Janeiro will undoubtedly become a sort of Holy Grail(ish) adventure. A few greedy hoteleries have given ample signs that they are in this business to make loads of money. Quite a few tourists fearing for their budgets will no doubt turn to alternative accommodation in what, after all, ranks today as the 13ª most expensive city in the world.

As usual, do remember the door to all the information on Rio here at the BRAZIL TRAVEL BLOG is the blog post destination: Rio de Janeiro.

destination: Rio de Janeiro
Rio launching official app for smartphones
48 hours in Rio de Janeiro – what to do, where to go
24 hours in Rio de Janeiro
hotels in Rio de Janeiro
budget accommodation in Rio de Janeiro
the Rio de Janeiro subway
map of Rio de Janeiro
restaurants in the favelas in Rio de Janeiro, a new tourist attraction
the new official Rio Guide
1746: Rio de Janeiro’s tourist information phone line. In English too!
Rio de Janeiro’s Michelin guide for free
hang-gliding in Rio de Janeiro
Rio bus station: Terminal Novo Rio

June 19, 2012 | By More
an end to the Rio hotel saga, for the time being at least

an end to the Rio hotel saga, for the time being at least

Copacabana y Leme

1. Prices spiraling out of control

It is not the first time we discuss hotel prices in Rio de Janeiro here at the BRAZIL TRAVEL BLOG. Quite likely it won’t be the last either. Flávio Dino is the president of Embratur, the government’s agency responsible for the promotion of tourism in Brazil abroad. He’s not someone likely to shoot himself on the foot. He recently criticized openly the attitude of Rio hotels saying they are practicing “abusive rates”. So much so that the European Union’s delegation to Rio+20 cancelled its participation on the event due to rocketing accommodation costs. Embratur’s chief believes it was a very serious situation. Only three months ago the agency he presides met with representatives from Rio hotels to prevent a dramatic price increase.

The case reached the international media (Mission Impossible: Rio in June). Only after the image of Rio had been tarnished an agreement was reached and hotel owners agreed to more reasonable prices. The damage was done.

The incredible thing is that, not taking into account the prices practiced during the dates of Rio+20, five-star hotels in Rio de Janeiro were already the most expensive in the planet. This was the conclusion of a survey carried out by internet hotel booking company Hoteis.com, after analyzing prices charged by 142,000 hotels in 19,800 cities worldwide. The company also ranked the Brazilian cities with the most expensive accommodation. Heading the list, Angra dos Reis, Búzios, Rio de Janeiro, São Paulo and Campinas. The note on the survey was published by Rio de Janeiro’s newspaper O Globo: Cinco estrelas do Rio, os mais caros do mundo.

Jardim Botânico

2. More affordable accommodation in on the increase

It couldn’t be otherwise. Brazilian newspaper Folha de São Paulo reflected recently on the rise of the number of youth hostels in Rio de Janiero (read the article, in Portuguese, at: Hostels são repaginados no Rio, de olho na Copa do Mundo). According to the paper, Rio has now 65 youth hostels, many of them opened recently.

The proximity of the World Cup and the Olympic Games have produced a sharp increase in hotel prices. Coupled with that, the reality of the Rio hotelling sector, where the low season is a thing of the past. No wonder many new youth hostels are opening their doors offering a more affordable accommodation alternative for many travelers.

There are many decent people running their hostel business in Rio. Make sure your choice of hostel includes one of those decent folk rather than the few rotten apples in the basket.

3. What’s in store for the World Cup and the Olympic games?

If Rio (and other host cities) hotel owners insist on their current strategy of drawing up to the very last drop of blood from city visitors (we know there are Brazilian hotels planning to force World Cup fans to book rooms for the entire period of the World Cup at the host city where they are located rather than individual nights) we will find an scenario familiar to South Africa (World Cup 2010) or the Ukraine (Euro Cup 2012) where some host cities contemplated how hotel bookings all but vanished.

People want to visit Brazil during the World Cup. But they are not willing to ruin themselves in the process.

May 22, 2012 | By More
new Brazilian standards for types of accomodation

new Brazilian standards for types of accomodation

Up until recently Brazil counted with no official accommodation standards. Attempting to define a Brazilian hotel by its number of stars was pretty much meaningless. In an attempt to put an end to this messy situation, the Brazilian Ministry of Tourism launched recently the Sistema Brasileiro de Classificação de Meios de Hospedagem (Brazilian System of Classification of Types of Accommodation). It is an initiative that attempts to establish objective and straightforward criteria to help define the types of accommodation. Whether it will have any real impact on the tourist sector, it remains to be seen.

If you go to the official website, in Portuguese, you will find lengthy descriptions of each of the new categories. Here’s just a brief summary.

  • Hotel. It can have 1, 2, 3, 4 or 5 stars.
  • Resort. Defined as a hotel with leisure infrastructure. There are 4 and 5 stars resorts.
  • Hotel Fazenda. Defined as a hotel in a rural setting. It can have 1, 2, 3, 4 or 5 stars.
  • Cama e Café. A rough equivalent of the popular bed and breakfast. It can have 1, 2, 3, 4 or 5 stars
  • Hotel Histórico. A hotel in a historic or listed building. It can have 3, 4 or 5 stars.
  • Pousada. Defined as a building horizontal in its layout with a maximum of 30 rooms. It can have 3, 4 or 5 stars.
  • Flat/apart-hotel. It can have 3, 4 or 5 stars.

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December 5, 2011 | By More