Following in the jet stream o Norwegian, it is now the turn of Virgin Atlantic to announce direct flights between the UK and Brazil. In this case a daily service as of 2020 from London Heathrow to São Paulo using the Boeing 787-9, Dreamliner, with an Upper Class, Premium and Economy Delight, Classic and Light offering.
This will be Virgin’s first South American route and it will join British Airways and LATAM Airlines in flying the London-São Paulo route direct, making Heathrow a very competitive hub to travel to-and-from Brazil and the rest of the south of South America.
Norwegian is scheduled to start flying direct to-and-from Rio de Janeiro and London Gatwick as of 31 March 2019. Norwegian will also use the Dreamliner. Briitish Airways also offers a daily direct service from London Heathrow to Rio de Janeiro.
Two Brazilian directors will have their films screened in the official section of this year’s Festival de Cannes
Carlos Diegues, who has had three films screen in competition at Cannes, will receive a special screening and the world premiere of his latest film “O Grande Circo Místico” (The Great Mystical Circus – photo). In 2012 Diegues’was chair of the Caméra d’or jury.
Sao Paulo born, LA based director Joe Penna, better known to his You Tube followers as Mystery Guitar Man, is to get a special midnight screening of his first feature, the thriller “Arctic” which stars Mads Mikkelsen, who headlined NBC’s Hannibal series.
As we countdown to carnival in Rio the main samba schools, that make up the Grupo Especial, will parade on the nights of Sunday, 11 February and Monday, 12 February.
13 schools will parade in 2018, that is one more than normal after no school was relegated in 2017 and Império Serrano were promoted. It is expected that two schools will be relegated this year. For a full description of the parade visit our sister site, Rio:The Guide, or CLICK HERE
Following the draw by the League of Samba School (LIESA), seven schools will parade on Sunday, 11 February and six on Monday, 12 February. The order (and approximate start time) is:
Sunday, 11 February
- Império Serrano (21.15)
- São Clemente (22.00-22.30)
- Vila Isabel (23.25-23.45)
- Paraíso do Tuiuti (00.30-01.00)
- Grande Rio (01.35-02.15)
- Mangueira (02.40-03.30)
- Mocidade Independente de Padre Miguel (03.45-04.45)
Monday, 12 February
- Unidos da Tijuca (21.15)
- Portela (22.00-22.30)
- União da Ilha (23.25-23.45)
- Salgueiro (00.30-01.00)
- Imperatriz Leopoldinense (01.35-02.15)
- Beija-Flor (02.40-03.30)
The titles and rough theme of each samba school for 2018 – and many are likely to be political in content – are:
Sunday, 11 February
- Império Serrano – O Império na Rota da China (A look at the silk route and the influences of China in Brazil)
- São Clemente – Academicamente Popular (A celebration of the centenary of Rio’s Escola de Belas Artes – School of Fine Arts)
- Vila Isabel – Corra, que o futuro vem aí!(Man’s discoveries and inventions and their impact on the environment and how we live)
- Paraíso do Tuiuti – Meu Deus, meu Deus, está extinta a escravidão? (The story of slavery in Brazil)
- Grande Rio – Vai para o trono ou não vai? (A celebration of the centenary of the birth of one of Brazil’s most popular entertainers and communicators, Chacrinha)
- Mangueira – Com dinheiro ou sem dinheiro, eu brinco (A comment on the importance of carnival to the people and city even in an economic crisis)
- Mocidade Independente de Padre Miguel – Namastê… A Estrela que habita em mim saúda a que existe em você (A look at the impact and influences of India on Brazil)
Monday, 12 February
- Unidos da Tijuca – Um coração urbano, Miguel, o arcanjo das artes, saúda o povo e pede passagem! (The school honours the popular actor, director and writer Miguel Falabella)
- Portela – De repente de lá pra cá e dirrepente de cá pra lá (Looks at immigrants across the ages and their search for peace and liberty)
- União da Ilha – Brasil bom de boca (A look at Brazil’s culinary delights)
- Salgueiro – Senhoras do Ventre do Mundo (The importance and power of black women)
- Imperatriz Leopoldinense – Uma noite real no Museu Nacional (The theme is the 200 year history of the National Museum, once home to the Emperors)
- Beija-Flor – Monstro é aquele que não sabe amar. Os filhos abandonados da pátria que os pariu (Using the 200th anniversary of the publication of “Frankenstein” as the hook, the school looks at intolerance to those who are different)
After lodging an appeal with the League of Samba Schools, that are responsible for the parade of the top samba schools, it was decided that Mociade should share the title of champions of the 2017 carnival with Portela.
Mocidade had appealed after it learnt a judge had marked its Comissão de Frente on the wrong set of rules. They had dropped .1 of a point when it should not have done. With that extra .1 Mocidade’s score was the same as Portela. 269.9 points out of a possible 270.
It is Mocidade’s sixth title, having last won in 1996.
After 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)
If 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.
Last 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.
The 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:
- Grande Rio
- Imperatriz Leopoldinense
- Mocidade Independente de Padre Miguel
- Paraíso do Tuiuti
- São Clemente
- União da Ilha
- Unidos da Tijuca
- Vila Isabel
To add a little something extra to the the section of our sister site, Rio: The Guide, that looks at the city’s museums and galleries, we have asked our good friends at Ronya, one of Brazil’s leading experts in sourcing, acquiring, and maintaining art, to come up with some suggestions of the commercial art galleries in Rio de Janeiro where you can find some of the best and most interesting contemporary and modern Brazilian art and discover new emerging talents.
Just click on the links below to go to the web sites of the respective galleries. And remember, commercial art galleries are a Brazilian way of life. You pass one, you enter, you appreciate. If you like something, and have the money, you buy it. If not, just look and enjoy.
The Rio restaurant listings have now gone live on Rio: The Guide, the sister site to Brazil: The Guide, and can be found in the Eating Out section of the site, and also listed by area and type.
There are an estimated 10,000 restaurants in Rio de Janeiro, so we have decided to give you a selection of the best and most interesting in the key areas of town.
We also list what the critics and general public consider to be the best in town.
The site also has a full list of the hotels and hostels on offer in Rio de Janeiro.