After a wait of 33 years Portela is champion of Rio’s carnival again

screen-shot-2017-03-01-at-22-27-23After a wait of 33 years Portela, one of Rio’s oldest and most iconic samba schools, is champion of Rio’s carnival again. And by the narrowest of margins of just point one of a point out of 270. Portela scored 269.9 with Mocidade in second with 269.8 and Salgueiro third with 296.7.

Due to problems with some of the big floats it was decided that no school will be relegated, but one school will still be promoted, so in 2018 thirteen  rather than twelve schools will parade on the 11 and 12 February 2018.

The full results of Rio’s Carnival Parade in 2017 were:

  • Portela (269.9 points out of 270)
  • Mocidade Independente de Padre Miguel (269.8)
  • Salgueiro (269.7)
  • Mangueira (269.6)
  • Grande Rio (269.4)
  • Beija-Flor (269.2)
  • Imperatriz Leopoldinense (268,5)
  • União da Ilha (267.8)
  • Vila Isabel (267.4)
  • São Clemente (267.4)
  • Unidos da Tijuca (266.8)
  • Paraíso do Tuiuti (264.6)

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Counting down to Carnaval in Rio

Mangueira 2016 4The clock is ticking down to Carnaval in Rio de Janeiro, the city’s first really big celebration since the 2016 Olympic and Paralympic games.

Rio de Janeiro is the most famous and the largest of Brazil’s carnival celebrations. In Rio the focus is on samba and the parade of the samba schools organised by the League of Samba Schools on the Sunday and Monday evenings.

The main parades of the Grupo Especial will next take place on the nights of Sunday, 26 February and Monday, 27 February 2017. The schools parading will be:

Sunday, 26 February 2017

  • Paraíso do Tuiuti
  • Grande Rio
  • Imperatriz Leopoldinense
  • Vila Isabel
  • Salgueiro
  • Beija-Flor

Monday, 27 February 2017

  • União da Ilha
  • São Clemente
  • Mocidade Independente de Padre Miguel
  • Unidos da Tijuca
  • Portela
  • Mangueira

Six schools will parade on Sunday night and six on Monday and they will start at 22.00, 23.05, 00.10, 01.15, 02.20 and 03.25.

Up coming dates for Carnival in Brazil (Friday-Wednesday) are:

  • 2018: 9-14 February
  • 2019: 1-6 March
  • 2020: 21-26 February
  • 2021: 12-17-February
  • 2022: 25 February-2 March
  • 2023: 17-22 February
  • 2024: 9-14 February
  • 2025: 28 February-5 March

London has its own Rio Olympic Lounge

Rio Lounge 2016If you can’t get to Rio for the Olympics and are stuck back in London, you can still soak up the atmosphere of the games and Brazil at the Rio Olympic Lounge that is located in the Brazilian Embassy, just off Trafalgar Square (14-16 Cockspur Street. SW1Y 5BL).

Entry is free and the lounge is open Monday to Saturday from 10.00 and 19.00 from 6 to 21 August.

The Lounge showcases what lies beyond the city of Rio, and shows the state of Rio’s many other attractions. Basically where the residents of Rio – the Cariocas – head out to to have even more fun (if that is possible) at the weekends. Some even live there and go to Rio for the weekends!

If you are in Rio for the Olympics, you can get more information of what the city and state of Rio has to offer from the Visit Rio and TurisRio stands in Espaço Rio de Janeiro located at the Olympic Boulevard, at Orla Mayor Luiz Paulo Conde in the port area.

Mangueira: Champion of Rio’s carnaval 2016

Mangueira 2016 4Last was again not least at Rio de Janeiro’s famous carnaval, and the last of the top 12 Rio samba schools to parade in 2016, the iconic Mangueira of “Verde Rosa” (Green and Pink), a school that was first champion in 1932 and which was last champion in 2002, is champion again with a parade that honoured the great Brazilian singer Maria Bethânia.

Mangueira scored 269.8 points out of a possible 270,  beating Unidos da Tijuca and Portela in to second and third with 269.7 point, Salgueiro, that had lead for most of the countt, came fourth with 269.5, and the champion in 2015, Beija Flor, was fifth with 269.3. Estacio de Sa was relegated to the Grupo de Acesso while Paraíso do Tuiuti was promoted and reutrns to the main parade in 2017 for the first time since 2001.

Bethania Mangueira 2016The main parades of the Grupo Especial at carnaval in 2017 will next take place on the nights of Sunday, 26 February and Monday, 27 February 2017. The schools parading will be:

  • Beija-Flor
  • Grande Rio
  • Imperatriz Leopoldinense
  • Mangueira
  • Mocidade Independente de Padre Miguel
  • Paraíso do Tuiuti
  • Portela
  • Salgueiro
  • São Clemente
  • União da Ilha
  • Unidos da Tijuca
  • Vila Isabel

Mangueira 2016 2

Tomorrow has arrived in Rio and Brazil

museudoamanha 04Rio de Janeiro, Brazil and South America has a major new attraction with the opening of the Museum of Tomorrow (Museu do Amanhã). It is one the most exciting new museums and attractions to open in Rio in time for the 2016 Olympics

Designed by renowned Spanish architect Santiago Calatrava, the Museum of Tomorrow is one of the anchors of the newly developed Porto Maravilha cultural area that also houses the Museum of Rio Art. Dedicated to the sciences, the facility, which opened in December 2015, has a format unlike any other museum of natural history or of science and technology.

The Museum of Tomorrow offers visitors the opportunity to engage in personal-choice experiences, have a glimpse of future possibilities and envision how they will live and shape the planet in the next fifty years. The space explores variations on tomorrows in the fields of matter, life and thought and debates questions like climate change, population growth and longevity, global integration, the world’s increased diversity of material goods and its decreased natural diversity. It is a museum where people can follow the trails of their imagination and make their own choices about the future more conscientiously and ethically.

Roberta Sudbrack Veuve Clicquot Latin America’s Best Female Chef 2015

RobertaRoberta Sudbrack, who has a restaurant in Jardim Botânico in Rio de Janeiro, has been named Veuve Clicquot Latin America’s Best Female Chef 2015.

A self-taught cook who started out pushing a hotdog cart in Brasilia, Roberta Sudbrack was the head chef at Brazil’s presidential palace for eight years where she cooked for the likes of Bill Clinton, Fidel Castro and Prince Charles, as well as all of Latin America’s heads of state. She is the only female head chef to have been awarded three stars in the Guia Quatro Rodas, the Brazilian equivalent of Michelin, and her restaurant is listed No.13 in Latin America’s 50 Best Restaurants.

A key trait of her philosophy, according to the award organizers, is the emphasis on natural techniques. “From the beetroot ravioli to the pumpkin tartare, everything at Roberta Sudbrack is made by hand. The chef shuns machinery and modern equipment and prides herself on her 100% artisanal approach, but her cooking is anything but basic: she presents intricate, complex dishes such as her signature smoked okra with semi-cooked prawn, served with vegetarian caviar made from okra seeds,” they say.

Brazilian Grand Prix 2016

InterlagosFIA, the governing body for Formula 1, has announced the provisional calendar for 2016 that will see a record 21 races. The Brazilian Grand Prix in São Paulo is scheduled for Sunday, 13 November 2016 and will again be the penultimate race of the season. In 2015 the race is scheduled for 15 November.

The 2016 season will start on 3 April in Australia and end in Abu Dhabi on 27 November.

Rio Olympic Torch Relay

Rio Olympic Torch 1Movement, innovation and Brazilian flavour is the inspiration behind the design of the Rio 2016 Olympic torch, which was unveiled on 3 July 2015. Its design aims to reflect the meeting of the Olympic flame with the human warmth of the Brazilian people.

The torch relay convoy is expected to visit 500 Brazilian cities and towns – about 300 of which will host the relay itself while a further 200 will cheer the convoy as it passes by with the flame on display. They include the capitals of all 26 Brazilian states and Brasília. The route has been designed to reach the highest number of people as possible, and Rio 2016 estimates that the torch relay will reach 90 per cent of the Brazilian population.

Rio Olympic Torch 3The journey will begin in May 2016 and will last between 90 and 100 days. There will be about 12,000 torchbearers, each one carrying their torch about 200 meters, then passing the flame – which will have been lit in Greece – on to the next. The torch will travel 20,000 km by road and another 10,000 miles by air over the North and Midwest parts of the country, between the cities of Teresina and Campo Grande, without the flame ever going out.

The torch’s texture has triangles running the length of its body, alluding to the Olympic values of excellence, friendship and respect, and the floating effect of its different segments refers to the efforts of the athletes. One of its main innovations is the movement of these segments, which open up and expand vertically when the Olympic flame is passed from one torchbearer to another. This is known as “the kiss of the torches”.
Upon expanding, the segments reveal the elements that add the Brazilian flavour – diversity, energy and nature – represented by the sea, mountains, sky and sun, and the colours of the Brazilian flag.

Rio Olympic Torch 2 copyCrafted from recycled aluminium and resin with a satin finish, the torch weighs between 1kg and 1.5kg and stands 63.5cm high when closed and 69cm when opened.

The torch relay will start in Brasília and has a definite finish date: 5 August 2016, the day of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games opening ceremony at the Maracanã Stadium in Rio.

The 83 cities that will be the final destination of the Olympic flame at the end of each day are:

1 – Brasília
2 – Anápolis
3 – Goiânia
4 – Caldas Novas
5 – Uberlândia
6 – Patos de Minas
7 – Montes Claros
8 – Curvelo
9 – Governador Valadares
10 – Itabira
11 – Belo Horizonte
12 – Juiz de Fora
13 – Cachoeiro de Itapemirim
14 – Vitória
15 – São Mateus
16 – Porto Seguro
17 – Vitória da Conquista
18 – Ilhéus
19 – Valença
20 – Salvador
21 – Senhor do Bonfim
22 – Petrolina
23 – Paulo Afonso
24 – Aracaju
25 – Maceió
26 – Caruaru
27 – Recife
28 – Campina Grande
29 – João Pessoa
30 – Natal
31 – Mossoró
32 – Fortaleza
33 – Sobral
34 – Parnaíba
35 – Teresina
36 – Imperatriz
37 – Palmas
38 – São Luís
39 – Belém
40 – Macapá
41 – Santarém
42 – Boa Vista
43 – Manaus
44 – Rio Branco
45 – Porto Velho
46 – Cuiabá
47 – Campo Grande
48 – Dourados
49 – Presidente Prudente
50 – Londrina
51 – Cascavel
52 – Foz do Iguaçu
53 – Pato Branco
54 – Passo Fundo
55 – Santa Maria
56 – Pelotas
57 – Porto Alegre
58 – Caxias do Sul
59 – Criciúma
60 – Florianopólis
61 – Blumenau
62 – Joinville
63 – Curitiba
64 – Ponta Grossa
65 – Itapetininga
66 – Bauru
67 – Ribeirão Preto
68 – Franca
69 – Campinas
70 – Osasco
71 – São Bernado
72 – São Paulo
73 – Santos
74 – São José dos Campos
75 – Angra dos Reis
76 – Volta Redonda
77 – Petrópolis
78 – Nova Friburgo
79 – Macaé
80 – Cabo Frio
81 – Niterói
82 – Nova Iguaçu
83 – Rio de Janeiro

Rio’s Samba School parades in February 2016

Beija flor 02The draw has been made for main parades of the major Rio samba schools, the  Grupo Especial. The parades will take place on the nights of Sunday, 7 February and Monday, 8 February 2016. The order will be:

Sunday, 7 February 2016

  • Estácio de Sá
  • União da Ilha
  • Beija-Flor
  • Grande Rio
  • Mocidade Independente de Padre Miguel
  • Unidos da Tijuca

Monday, 8 February 2016

  • Vila Isabel
  • Salgueiro
  • São Clemente
  • Portela
  • Imperatriz Leopoldinense
  • Mangueira

Six schools will parade on Sunday night and six on Monday and they will start at 21.30, 22.35, 23.40, 00.45, 01.50 and 02.55.

For the full details of Rio’s carnival visit Rio: The Guide

Based on the results of the last six carnivals (2010-2015), the League of Samba Schools (LIESA) ranks the top ten samba schools in Rio de Janeiro as:

Unidos da Tijuca (95 points)
Beija-Flor (81)
Salgueiro (69)
Unidos de Vila Isabel (53)
Grande Rio (47)
Imperatriz Leopoldinense (34)
Portela (34)
Mangueira (29)
União da Ilha do Governador (17)
Mocidade Independente de Padre Miguel (16)