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Hotel Highlights

  • Infinity pool on the roof, private patch on the beach
  • Ipanema’s fashionista favourite
  • Restaurant from the famous Fasano empire

Overview

RUNNER-UP: HOTTEST HOTEL BAR – SMITH HOTEL AWARDS 2013

This Starck-styled boutique hotel sits on the sexiest stretch of Rio de Janeiro. Fasano Rio is brought to you by a hospitality family who’ve been in the restaurant and hotel game for more than 100 years. With a glass exterior, a white marble pool on the roof, and a section of private beach, it’s all about the glitz and glam of the supermodel's seafront.

Smith Extra

Here's what you get for booking Fasano Rio with us:

Welcome pastry gift from the chef, early check-in and late check-out if there's availability

Facilities

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Fasano Rio - Rio De Janeiro hotels - Brazil

Need To Know

Rooms

89, including 10 suites.

Check–out

12pm. Earliest check-in, 3pm.

Rates

Double rooms from $570.00, excluding tax at 5 per cent. Please note the hotel charges an additional local city tax of $6.00 per room per night on check-out.

More details

Rates include a 15-minute welcome massage, personal trainer and use of the rooftop pool, but exclude breakfast (R$84 each).

Also

There’s a spa specialising in jet-lag-relieving treatments, as well as a Vichy shower room up on the roof.

At the hotel

Spa, gym and WiFi (R$50 a day). In rooms: flatscreen TV, CD/DVD player, iPod dock, free bottled water and Affinity bath products.

Our favourite rooms

For lots of space and a view, opt for a Deluxe, where ocean visions and Sergio Rodrigues wooden chairs are offered out on the prime balcony spots. If a leather-upholstered day-bed strikes your fancy, you’ll need a Suite.

Poolside

There’s a heated marble infinity pool on the roof overlooking Ipanema Beach.

Packing tips

A bikini for every day of your stay, but don’t bother with flip flops – the hotel will give you a pair for free.

Also

Small pets are allowed, as is smoking (on balconies only). Two bedrooms have wheelchair access.

Children

Extra beds and cots can be added to Deluxe rooms, Suites and Deluxe Suites, for a fee. There’s a lifeguard at the pool from 9am until 5pm. Babysitting can be arranged with 24 hours’ notice. Toys and DVDs can be borrowed, and cookies and milk are provided

Food & Drink

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Fasano Rio - Rio De Janeiro hotels - Brazil

Hotel Restaurant

Al Mare restaurant is named after the sea; look out for Italian-inspired seafood suppers, such as seared tuna with baked endive and a fish-based lasagne. Expect great things from this restaurant superpower (Vittorio Fasano opened the first outpost in São Paulo in 1902).

Hotel Bar

Baretto Londra is named after the owner’s favourite city (London, if you’re still guessing). It’s small and intimate, with leather chairs, aged Argentine red brick, low-lighting and Union Flags. The cocktails aren’t bad, either – try the yellow-fruits caipirinha.

Last orders

Breakfast starts at 7am and is available until 10am, 11am on weekends; lunch is 12pm–3.30pm; dinner is from 7pm until the last guest is ready to leave.

Room service

Breakfast and an abridged version of the menu is on offer 24 hours a day.

Smith Insider

Dress code

Skimpy supermodel chic – this is the land of Alessandra Ambrosios and Giseles (don’t let that put you off your three courses).

Top table

For privacy, one of the spread-out tables with deep wooden seats and big white cushions on the terrace. For people-watching, ask for a table inside, close to the window for a full view of the restaurant.

Local Guide

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Fasano Rio - Rio De Janeiro hotels - Brazil
Eat, drink, see, do: local favourites and more…

Local restaurants

Socialite-favoured Gero (+55 (0)21 2239 8158) serves revamped European cuisine, such as lamb stuffed with foie gras and osso buco with mushroom stew. Authentic Japanese ingredients (shipped across the Pacific) are on offer at Tenkai (+55 (0)21 2540 5100; www.tenkai.com.br). For Portuguese dishes such as classic codfish and seafood stew, try Antiquarius (+55 (0)21 2294 1049). Boox (+55 (0)21 7853 7740) in Ipanema is an Italian restaurant (with renowned risotto and an international wine list) that practically turns into a nightclub after hours.

+ Enlarge
Sultry Station 8

Fasano Rio

Av. Viera Souto 80, Rio De Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, 22420 000

Planes

Both of the city’s two main airports are within half an hour of the hotel. International visitors will most likely arrive at Galeão Airport, a 30-minute drive away. Santos Dumont Airport is 20 minutes away.

Trains

There’s a metro station a kilometre away: General Osório station is on Line One of Rio’s underground.

Automobiles

You’ll find the hotel just behind the main stretch of Ipanema Beach, on Avenida Vieira Souto. Parking costs R$60 a day.

Reviews

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Fasano Rio - Rio De Janeiro hotels - Brazil

Anonymous review

by Louis de Rohan , Brand builder

Ipanema, 4pm, Saturday. We’re dressed like crazy Cariocas in Havaiana'd multi-coloured get-ups, stepping out of an icy-cold minibus into the thick tropical sea air. Greeted by the beaming smiles of two tanned doormen, our heavy bags vanish before our very eyes. Having just arrived at Fasano from a low-key yoga retreat in the Atlantic rainforest of Ihle Grande two hours down the coast, we&rsq…
Read more

Fasano Rio

Anonymous review by Louis de Rohan, Brand builder

Ipanema, 4pm, Saturday. We’re dressed like crazy Cariocas in Havaiana'd multi-coloured get-ups, stepping out of an icy-cold minibus into the thick tropical sea air. Greeted by the beaming smiles of two tanned doormen, our heavy bags vanish before our very eyes. Having just arrived at Fasano from a low-key yoga retreat in the Atlantic rainforest of Ihle Grande two hours down the coast, we’re detecting a distinct whiff of wealth. Contrast is a common theme in Brazil.

Bossanova-chic lobby negotiated, we’re breezing through billowing Philippe Starck curtains only to be welcomed by a crew of busy young Brazilians clad in latté-coloured suits. Glancing across the iconic  beach scene along Ipanema, I get butterflies. Just then a beautiful Brazilian girl floats past in a coral-pink shirt; no doubt she's headed towards the elevator and the spectacular rooftop pool above.

Checked-in, we make for our First Ocean View Room on the fourth floor. En route, we’re distracted by a candy-pink designer armchair attached with an elastic band to a giant bouncing ball. From here on, Mr Smith requires coaxing off it every time we leave our room. Our first impression of room 405 is its compactness – but the view of the Atlantic Ocean from both bed and glass shower-cabinet soon compensates for its size. Sliding open the balcony window, we sink into two 1950s-style Brazilian hardwood chairs and admire the parade of volleyball players, surfers, joggers, bladers, cyclists along Brazil’s world-famous beach. Rio, we’ve arrived and we love you already.

Despite the post-beach rush hour for guest appointments, I squeeze in a complimentary 15-minute reflexology session in the hotel’s diminutive spa. Before I know it, eyes are shut and I am practicing my yoga meditation to what sounds, worryingly, like pan-pipe music. But who cares when you have the lovely Andréa busy kneading your feet with hot stones.

Back up in our room, strategically placed tear-shaped mirrors catch my eye. They’ve obviously been positioned for couples to check out their tans from all angles. Obligingly, these Smiths plan to make the most of them during their stay. Showering, I spot a sun-kissed Mr Smith on the balcony in the misty-pink twilight, mesmerised by the waves below, the dramatic silhouette of the Dois Irmãos (Two Brothers) mountains and the flickering streetlights of the favelas. These hillside shacks make for a bizarre contrast to our luxurious digs that have hosted so many of the world’s rich and famous (Madonna and Testino, if you must twist my arm for the indiscretion), who come to work and play in Brazil’s party capital.

Suppertime approaching, we consider the stunning crystal-glassed bar and white-clothed tables of the Fasano Al Mare. Sadly, ‘fashionable’ translates, to us, as ‘pricey’. Rio’s most expensive restaurants, worth it though it is for the food, service, and environment, I earmark it for when I'm back here with an unlimited budget. Freshly dressed, we head downstairs in our complimentary flip-flops care of Oscar Metsavhat, the owner of Brazil’s fashion chain, Osklen. (It turns out they’re also handy for insect-swatting – sorry to lower the tone, but even in a designer den such as this, the occasional bug is only to be expected in tropical Rio.)

Side-stepping a moody bouncer at Baretto Londra, the hotel’s ground-floor bar, we sneak a peek into this celebrated drinkery. A dark wood-panelled study-like room with leather chairs and low tables, it is a stylish tribute to the hotel owner’s favourite city, London. Bottles of premium vodka sit chilling on ice at each table in preparation for the 8pm Saturday night opening when Rio’s models and international jetset descend here to rev up. As for us, we head for hip Leblon, a 10-minute drive away, for dinner with well-heeled locals at Zuka.

Back in our boudoir, the light drone of taxis racing outside does little to impair our deep sleep under deliciously silky 300-threadcount Egyptian cotton. Early Sunday, we wake to the shouts of a coconut delivery truck loading up the beach kiosks. This colourful main drag is pedestrianised on weekends and next comes the orchestra of samba drum beats and a friendly barrage of Brazilians demonstrating down Avenida Vieira Souto.

Platters of fresh tropical fruit and passionfruit the size of golden delicious apples make breakfast downstairs in the Al Mare Restaurant one of our daily highlights. Our favourite table is a white-cushioned bench outside on the narrow, decked terrace, where each day Mr Smith tussles the beautiful white linen placemats wondering where we can buy them. I ponder asking our server, but end up feeling too shy. While senior staff in the Fasano Rio speak excellent English, a little is lost in translation when it comes to those more junior. Having ordered a watermelon juice, I get an equally delicious orange juice; a poached egg request leads only to a bewildered smile. Luckily the English speaking maître d’ is usually on hand to translate sign language; and despite the occasional language barrier, Brazilian charm goes a long way. Our hostess Varena, a young actress with silky black hair in a 1950s bun, giant black eyelashes and a film-star smile, will remain in our memories as our very own 'Girl from Ipanema'.

For the rest of the morning we test out the Fasano’s beachbeds, in its private parasol-studded swathe of sand in front of the hotel. Cossetted by yet more highly trained staff, we lie back and think of anything but England, while helicopters intermittently pound the sky above. Afternoon sees us retiring to the spectacular infinity pool on the eighth floor where yet another troop of willing attendants is ready to greet us. Between dunks in the shallow end, cold freshwater showers overlooking Christ the Redeemer, and nips in the steam room, we rehydrate on limitless fresh coconut water. Around us, guests order cachaça-laden caipirinhas and chunky club sandwiches.

Fasano’s view of Corcovado: surely one of the most spectacular vistas in the world. But be warned as you reach for your camera. Such a glamorous perch of course attracts wealthy men and beautiful young women. The relevance of this? Let’s just say, when we innocently post a picture of Mr Smith on Facebook in the rooftop pool on our romantic escape, it ignites a string of enquiries… ‘What exactly is happening on the sunbed behind you?’ Friends, this is Rio. The passion is contagious.

The Guestbook

Whenever you book a stay at a Smith hotel with us, we'll invite you to review it when you get back. Read what other Smith members had to say in Fasano Rio's Guestbook below.

 

BlackSmith

Stayed on

We loved

Excellent rooms, great late evening bar and rooftop pool with excellent views. Very helpful staff.

Rating: 10/10 stars

BlackSmith

Stayed on

We loved

I loved the whole atmosphere. From the moment you check in until you check out, the experience of staying at Fasano makes you feel special and welcome. The view on the rooftop is incredible and unmissable! Tip: go up there for the sunset.

Don’t expect

Usually, for the services I needed, it seemed I'd have to ask twice.

Rating: 10/10 stars

BlackSmith

Stayed on

We loved

I loved the pool, the location, the pool, customer service, and I mention the pool?

Don’t expect

If they could knock down the building next door so you get the sun for longer at the pool bar, that would be nice!

Rating: 10/10 stars