Photos and Review by Oyster.com Investigators
In historic Santa Teresa, close to the airport but a drive away from the beach
Relais & Chateaux Santa Teresa is located (as the name suggests) in Santa Teresa, a beautiful, historic area with gorgeous old buildings, museums, historic sights, and art galleries. But it's around a 20-minute drive away from Rio's beaches.
Rio de Janeiro's beaches are a major draw. Practically year-round, beaches are crowded with visitors and locals. The beaches not only provide a space for lounging, surfing, and swimming, but many hang-gliders and para-gliders -- popular sports in Rio de Janeiro due to its high mountains and good wind conditions -- land on the white sand or in the water. Visitors wishing to stay near the beaches typically choose the South Zone (Zona Sul), which is home to the majority of the city's hotels.
Relais & Chateaux Santa Teresa is a historic mansion turned luxurious boutique hotel located on a former coffee plantation in Santa Teresa. It features gorgeous tropical decor, which includes bright cabanas in the lounge, lots of lush greenery (by the pool, on the grounds), tiled mosaics, and island-themed bed runners in the rooms. The lower-level rooms aren't quite as upscale as the rest of the hotel, but they do have sleek bathrooms, wood floors, flat-screen TVs, and a light, airy feel. Suites are higher-end, with extras such as four-poster beds of tropical wood, standalone tubs, and shady terraces. The hotel also features a gorgeous spa, a rooftop pool with sweeping views of the city, and a restaurant serving delicious French-influenced Brazilian cuisine.