São Paulo is primarily a business destination for most travellers to the city so often bypassed by tourists however it is a city with huge appeal, Brazil’s best restaurants and shopping and endless nightlife. Understandably it has an endless array of hotels including a number of excellent 5 star properties. Here’s our top three Luxury Hotels in São Paulo which we visited on a recent visit the city.
The Hotel Unique is one of the most visually stunning hotels in the world. Standing outside of the hotel you could be looking at a hotel, a ship or perhaps a giant game of Connect4!
Located at the edge of Ibirapuera Park, the Hotel Unique simply oozes style. As you enter the huge lobby area you are greeted by a long freestanding table which acts as the reception where attentive staff offer you champagne as you check into this bright and airy space.
Attached the lobby is the Wall bar with an imposing array of spirits climbing up the wall to the ceiling and neighbouring the small library with comfy design chairs you can easily fall asleep in.
Close to the library is access to the spa, fitness area and a swimming pool which comes complete with water slide with a TV placed above the end of the slide. If you go up and down enough, you could probably watch a whole football game…
The elevators and corridors are dimly lit to create mood which you may not enjoy if you are scared of the dark and lead you to the bedrooms. The rooms are stylish with portholes for windows and all rooms are designed the same with the suites just being that big bigger. We loved the bathrooms with the wall/window that raises up allowing you to be lying in the bath and conversing with your partner on the bed. All the suites are at the ends of the building and incorporate the curvy floors that are created by the building’s exterior design.
On the top floor is the restaurant and attached is the truly stunning Skye Bar which is one of the places to be seen in São Paulo. From here you can relax in the striking red swimming pool and enjoy a caipirinha overlooking the São Paulo skyline.
If you are looking for somewhere super cool to stay whilst on holiday in São Paulo then this will be it.
The Hotel Fasano set the standard for all other luxury hotels in Sao Paulo to follow and still today, many years after it first opened, not much has changed. Located on a quiet road that runs parallel with the shopping delights offered on Rua Oscar Freire, its art deco exterior is home the most wonderful lobby, a large welcoming area with a long bar not to be confused with the reception desk! Immediately you get a feel for the hotels sophisticated design, dark woods and stylish leather seats.
The reception desk is hidden away around the corner and close to the Fasano restaurant which is one of the highlights of the hotel and it was the restaurant which made Rogerio Fasano famous, the hotels came secondary. The Fasano restaurant is regularly considered the best Italian restaurant in South America and a place to be seen. The restaurant accommodates up to 80 guests and includes a private room that can seat up to 26 people in a stylish design which is typical of the Fasano name.
Close to the restaurant is the fabulous Bar Baretto, an intimate live music and jazz bar, which was considered by the Wall Street Magazine as “the most beautiful bar in the world” and regularly hosts top performers.
The bedrooms are nothing but elegant all with beautiful panoramic views over the leafy Jardins neighbourhood. The elegant, subdued décor is enhanced by the best and most luxurious amenities. The rooms offer king size beds with 300-thread-count Egyptian cotton sheets and white goose down pillows. Linen curtains, Persian Kilim rugs, white marble bathrooms, Venetian-framed paintings and Murano vases echo the Italian traditions of the Fasano family. The suites, with rooms separated by wooden sliding doors, are located on the top floors of the hotel, with unique city views.
There is a fitness area with massage rooms offering a variety of treatments and perhaps our favourite space, the stunning indoor pool with large windows looking out on Sao Paulo.
The Hotel Emiliano seems rather unassuming at first when seen from outside. Despite its excellent location in the heart of Sao Paulo’s best shopping on Rua Oscar Freire as you enter the hotel it feels relatively unimpressive compared to the Hotel Unique with its reception desk tucked away. Despite the very comfortable leather chairs in reception, the staff seemed less sharp and less attentive but perhaps I was being harsh.
There’s a small bar leading on to the restaurant which serves an excellent a la carte breakfast.
All guests staying at the Emiliano for business or on holiday receive a welcome massage. A bottle of wine and fruits are also placed in the rooms which are by far the best feature of the hotel. Indeed it is the rooms are what makes the Hotel Emiliano so fabulous. There are only 3 rooms to a floor and they all offer large spaces with incredibly comfortable beds and an exceptional eye for detail with wonderful personal touches. The bathrooms are stylish and intriguing in the same measure with a crazy looking Japanese toilet which also doubles as a bidet which the switch of a bed, all very sci-fi.
The hotel has only a small fitness centre which is excellently equipped and a couple of ofuros outside for relaxing in. The hotel lacks a swimming pool sadly unless you want pay the £3000 a night cost for the Presidential suite which features its own pool and dining room!
If you are visiting Sao Paulo for business or are looking for a luxury hotel, purely to rest your head then this is it and if you are doing serious business in Sao Paulo then the Hotel Emiliano offers a helipad, ideal for avoiding the renowned traffic of the city, and is the only hotel in the city with such a facility.
It’s a tough choice but for the all-round package, the location and the style, it has to be the Fasano. The perfect place to stay on a luxury holiday or whilst on business in Sao Paulo.
Simon Williams is Director of Bespoke Brazil.