Matueté Blog

Culture & History @en

7 de April de 2016

:: (a) Brasil | *Beach @en | Adventure @en | Brazil - Southeast Region @en | Culture & History @en | Gastronomy @en | Nature @en

Imagine being able to combine culture and history, with a beautiful bay filled with island and virgin beaches?

This is what Paraty can offer, and chartering a sail boat is the perfect way to enjoy this to the fullest.


Set in one of the most stunning stretches of the Brazilian coastline, backed by rainforest clad mountains on one side and locked-in by the sea on another.

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Paraty’s colourful colonial architecture references back to its important role as a main port for gold export from Brazil to Europe. It has a vibrant culture and nightlife, great local shopping, waterfalls and a bay filled with islands and virgin beaches which are best explored by chartering a sailing boat.


Can you imagine gather some of your best friends or family and sail around pristine beaches with all comfort and the liberty to do the trip as you please?


One of our favorites is a Lipari 41, a modern catamaran, with wide open decks, excellent panoramic visibility and a cockpit with seating for eight at the table.

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Contact us to know more about our sailing charter suggestions.

*Images by Matueté
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1 de July de 2015

:: (a) Brasil | Culture & History @en | Top 5 @en

We believe that a powerful soundtrack is a lovely way to get in touch with the culture, soul and vibe of a place, and Brazil is a sanctuary of musical treasures! It’s almost impossible to visit our country and not get touched by the strenght of the rhythm around here.

To get familiar with our bossa, all you have to do is click the links below to get inspired by our 11 selected jewels of Brazilian music.

It’s almost like being here… almost!

1. Aquele abraço – Gilberto Gil

Aquele Abraço is a samba written by Brazilian singer Gilberto Gil during a period of cultural censorship in Brazil. The lyric celebrate neighborhoods, landmarks, samba schools and popular culture figures of Rio de Janeiro. A beautiful classic!

2. Descobridor dos 7 mares – Tim Maia

This lively song written by Brazilian soul man Tim Maia is a contagious tribute to some of our famous beaches. Groovy 🙂

3. Aquarela do Brasil – Ary Barroso

One of the most popular Brazilian songs written by composer Ary Barroso in 1939. Due to the huge popularity achieved in the United States, the song received an English version composed by Bob Russell to Frank Sinatra in 1957. Since then, it has been interpreted by singers from almost all parts of the world. A hit!

4. Filhos de Gandhi – Gilberto Gil

Newly arrived from London in 1972, Gilberto Gil spent the Carnival in Bahia and found his favourite Carnival block – “Gandhi’s Son” – reduced to only 40 or 50 people, which inspired this beautiful song. The theme was also responsible to encourage people and rekindling the movement.

5. País Tropical – Jorge Ben

Composed by one of samba-rock legends Mr. Jorge Ben in 1969, quickly the song became a huge success just in time for the atmosphere of jingoism that the military regime was using in its advertising in the country. It simply says that Brazil is a tropical country, blessed by God and beautiful by nature… and we cannot disagree. 🙂

6. Querelas do brasil – Elis Regina

First performed by Elis Regina in April 1978, the song is a reference to “Aquarela do Brasil” and to Brazil’s economic elite that was attacking the popular culture of the country with an Americanized culture which can be perceived by verses as “Brazil does not know Brazil”.

7. Sandálias de prata – Ary Barroso

Also written by master Ary Barroso, this song from 1942 is a simple and gentle portrait of our culture: happy and fearless.

*performed by João Gilberto

8. Sampa – Caetano Veloso

Caetano Veloso wrote this song in 1965 about his first time in Sao Paulo. The way his heart felt when he crossed famous avenues, landmarks and how quickly people take in the city’s reality. <3

9. Canta Brasil – Gal Costa

This samba is considered one of the country hymns composed by Alcyr Pires and interpreted by singer Gal Costa. Talks about miscegenation and exalts the beauty of national culture. 🙂

10. Aquarela Brasileira – Martinho da Vila

And we could not miss a Carnival theme on our list, right? Aquarela Brasileira (or Brazilian watercolor) was composed by singer Martinho da Villa and was the representative song for the Imperio Serrano samba school in 1964. So powerful!

 11. Brasis – Seu Jorge

A fresh vision composed by singer Seu Jorge that explains the existence of several different and contrasting Brazils.




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29 de June de 2015

:: (a) Brasil | *Beach @en | Art & Architecture @en | Culture & History @en | Top 5 @en

As it’s widely known, UNESCO aims to promote the identification, protection and preservation of cultural and natural heritage, which are considered especially valuable for humanity. It’s a beautiful mission, that we truly admire!  Brazil has several natural and cultural treasures considered world’s patrimony by UNESCO  and we are super proud of that, so we’ve  decided to share some of them with you.

Which one would you like to visit first?

1. Brasília

Brasilia was a landmark in the history of town planning. Urban planner Lucio Costa and celebrated architect Oscar Niemeyer intended that every element should be in harmony with the city’s overall design. Not to mention the beautiful sunlight and natural landscape from cerrado (or brazilian savanna, as you wish), contrasting with the concrete.


2. Historic Centre of Salvador de Bahia

Brazil’s first capital, Salvador witnessed the blending of European, African and Amerindian cultures and it was also the first slave market in the new world. The city has managed to preserve many outstanding Renaissance buildings and a remarkable feature of the old town are the brightly coloured houses.


 3. Historic Centre of São Luís

This historic town has preserved the original street plan in its entirety. An exceptional number of fine historic buildings have survived, making this an outstanding example of an Iberian colonial town. And not too far from São Luis, there’s Lençois Maranhenses National Park which Unesco should seriously consider including as a natural patrimony. 🙂


4. Rio de Janeiro: Carioca Landscapes between the Mountain and the Sea

The site consists of an exceptional urban setting encompassing the key natural elements that have shaped and inspired the development of the city: from the highest points of the Tijuca National Park’s mountains down to the sea. Rio de Janeiro is also recognized for the artistic inspiration it has provided to musicians, landscapers and uurbanites.


5. Brazilian Atlantic Islands: Fernando de Noronha and Atol das Rocas Reserves

These reserves represent a large proportion of the island surface of the South Atlantic and their rich waters are extremely important for the aquatic environment. The islands are home to the largest concentration of tropical seabirds in the Western Atlantic. The portrait of paradise…


6. Central Amazon Conservation Complex

The Central Amazon makes up the largest protected area in the Amazon Basin and is one of the planet’s richest regions in terms of biodiversity. The site protects key threatened species including the black caiman and two species of river dolphins. 🙂


7. Cerrado Protected Areas: Chapada dos Veadeiros and Emas National Parks

One of the World’s oldest and most diverse tropical ecosystems. For thousands of years these sites have served as refuge for several species and will be vital for maintaining the biodiversity of the Cerrado region during future climate fluctuations. To include on your must see destinations!


8. Iguaçu National Park

Iguaçu National Park has one of the world’s largest and most impressive waterfalls. It is home to many rare and endangered species, among them the giant otter and the giant anteater. The clouds of sprinkle jet produced by the waterfall are conducive to the growth of lush vegetation. Breathtaking!


9. Pantanal Conservation Area

Located in Central Western Brazil, the site represents one of the world’s largest freshwater wetland ecosystems. The headwaters of the region’s two major river systems are located here and the abundance and diversity of its vegetation and animal life are spectacular. The best place in America to observe wildlife!


10. Serra da Capivara National Park

Many of the numerous rock shelters in Serra da Capivara National Park are decorated with cave paintings, some more than 25,000 years old. They are an outstanding testimony to one of the oldest human communities of South America. Wow!


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22 de May de 2015

:: (a) Brasil | *Urban @en | Art & Architecture @en | Brazil - Southeast Region @en | Culture & History @en | Gastronomy @en | Top 5 @en

São Paulo has thousands of must-see attractions for all types of curious visitors. No matter if you’re in the mood for art, gastronomy, listen to good music or just a walk in the park, the city has it all! But we decided to select five absolutely classical highlights that cannot be missed the next time you decide to explore our city.

Take a peek:

1.Edifício Copan

Copan is a beast! A whole city in itself…  It swerves like a giant wave, defying your sense of scale and perspective and stamping its huge footprint in São Paulo’s downtown. The building was designed by celebrated architect Oscar Niemeyer and currently has 1.160 apartments, 2.038 residents, 20 elevators and 221 underground parking spaces. Due to the large number of residents, the Brazilian postal service assigned the building its own postal code. The ground floor is home to 72 establishments, including an evangelical church, a travel agency, a bookstore, and 4 restaurants. Once there, we suggest you stop for one of the best caipirinhas in town, at Dona Onça bar 🙂


2. Liberdade, the biggest “japantown” in the world

A sprawling neighborhood centered around Rua Galvão Bueno, at Liberdade neighborhood, is home to 1.5 million Japaneses, the largest population outside of Japan. Liberdade is cherished by local people and tourists alike for its trendy shopping, top-quality oriental food, reasonably priced sushi and an unbeatable atmosphere. The area is also used for Japanese cultural events, including Buddhist festivals and a sumo wrestling championship, as well as a weekly craft market.


3. Central Market

The best urban market in South America, nicknamed “Mercadão” (or “Big Market”), is a Belle Époque beauty of Russian-designed stained glass and vast domes opened in 1933. Inside, are aisles and aisles of mostly gourmet food-related products: fresh fruits, fish, meat and several worthwhile snack stalls, bars and restaurants. After your sightseeing, don’t miss the best mortadella sandwich in the planet, at the Hocca Bar – a real gastronomic heritage of the city!


4. Afro-Brazilian Museum

Located in São Paulo’s most loved Park, the Ibirapuera, this hugely important and absolutely fascinating museum, features a permanent collection chronicling five centuries of African immigration (a nod to the 10 million African lives lost in the Brazil’s formation) and hosts a rotating array of contemporary Afro-centric exhibitions on its bottom two floors.


5. Sala São Paulo

The headquarters of São Paulo Symphonic Orchestra and one of Brazil’s most important concert halls, this former railway station was designed by Christiano Stockler das Neves in 1925. Situated in the city centre, the venue quickly became a key institution in the region’s cultural revitalization. Listed as a Historical Patrimony and targeted to be maintained as an important cultural landmark in the city, Sala São Paulo was officially inaugurated on the 9th of July 1999 with a performance of the Resurrection Symphony by Gustav Mahler.


P.S: Made by real SP Lovers 🙂

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30 de January de 2013

:: *Beach @en | *Urban @en | Culture & History @en | Uncategorized @en

The Portuguese had a very creative idea that is spreading around the world – they have transformed Lisbon cobblestones in QR codes containing historical information and curiosities about the city.

To build the mosaics they had to take out some historical stones from the floor that couldn’t just be thrown away. This led to another incredible idea – to take them to other places in the world and make other QR codes, containing information about each place with those same stones. The first place to get it was Bracelona, and now it’s arriving in Rio de Janeiro.

The idea is not only to give easy access to touristic information, but also to blend technology with tradition, and bring a creative and fun urban intervention.

The 1st QR code in Rio is at Arpoador beach, but there will be 30 more until the end of the year in Rio´s main touristic sights. That way the city will not only have a bit more of Portuguese history influences, but also an innovative way to tell its own history to the many tourist that are about to come.

To understand a bit better this Portuguese idea, check out the movie about the project!


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10 de January de 2013

:: *Urban @en | Brazil - Southeast Region @en | Culture & History @en

According to the Condé Nast Traveller, Brazil is one of the “Destinations to watch in 2013”.  So why not come to enjoy Carnaval? If you start planning now you can still make it! The festivities starts on February 8th and officially ends on the 12th. However, there will be plenty of things going on until the 17th.

This great party is celebrated all over the country, but Rio is definitely one of the best places to go. There you have many ways to celebrate:

The Sambadrome is the Carnival mecca. It’s where the magic happens and where the amazing Samba Parade on Carnival week takes place. It’s a must go! Rehearsals that are almost like the Parade but without costumes and with less participants also takes place there, starting already in December. It is also possible to do a tour during the day.

Rio de Janeiro, as the City of Carnival, offers a selection of Carnival balls. Though hundreds of balls happen all over the city, some are always better bets than others. The most traditional and popular ones are at the Scala and Mangueira Samba School. But the most glamorous is definitely the Copacabana Palace Ball.

Each neighborhood in Rio has its favorite Bandas or Blocos. Both consist of an orchestra marching along a pre-determined route, followed by hordes of enthusiastic samba dancers. They may come dressed in costumes, bathing suits, plain clothes, special T-shirts, or even in drag. It’s free, spontaneous, and everybody’s welcome to participate!

Check out Condé Nast article here.

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31 de October de 2012

:: Culture & History @en

Although it’s a folklore tradition in North America and Europe, it has little to do with our Brazilian traditions. Each year more and more people celebrate Halloween in Brazil due to foreign influences and the inevitable globalization. Our kids began to love wearing costumes and go trick-or-treating around their neighborhoods! They even end up learning a little bit of English, since most words and expressions for this holiday come from abroad.

This kind of cultural exchange is great but we end up not caring as much to our own folklore traditions. While kids are dressed like witches and vampires, they forget about the Brazilian myths, such as the Saci-Pererê: an annoying prankster boy with holes in his hand palms and a single leg, who has magical powers, smokes a pipe and wears a magical red cap that enables him to disappear whenever he wishes.

In some parts of the country the Brazilian folklore is much more celebrated. In the Amazon, for example, the myths surrounding the pink dolphins are remembered every day, since it´s part of the day to day life of many riverside communities. The myth says that at night pink dolphins become handsome young men who seduces girls, impregnates them, and then return to the river in the morning to become a dolphin again. Some also say that they are the guardians of the Amazonian Manatee. If you come to one of our amazon cruises you will sure see many of them.

We hope that Brazilian kids don´t forget these national myths while celebrating the Halloween, and who knows, your kids can also celebrate our myths some day!

If you wish to learn more about Brazilian folklore, please access the Brazilian Government´s official website .

Happy Halloween & Saci Pererê Day!

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13 de September de 2012

:: Culture & History @en

Official Mascots have come to play an important role in the FIFA World Cup as they represent the fun side of the event. Cast as a variety of animals, fruit, vegetables and children (plus one or two abstract characters), their infectiously positive attitude have added to the atmosphere of each competition in their own unique way. This week an important Brazilian magazine published what the Brazil’s World Cup Organizing Committee (COL) chose to be our mascot for 2014!

As South Africa in 2010, Brazil chose an animal that represents the country and in some way, has something to do with football – the three-banded armadillo (Tolypeutes tricinctus). Here we call it tatu –bola, or “tatu-ball” in English, because of its ability to roll into the shape of a ball under its leathery shell as a mode of self-defense.

It is native to South America, and many of them live at the Pantanal wetlands, in the center of Brazil. A great place to visit to observe wild animals and many species of birds, by the way! Check out our website to learn more.

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6 de September de 2012

:: Culture & History @en

It has been 190 years since D. Pedro I, prince of Portugal shouted by the Ipiranga River “Independence or Death”, the mark of the Brazilian Independency that is celebrated every 7th of September all around the country.

Brazil had been a colony of Portugal since 1500 when the first Portuguese arrived on these lands. From there on, the Portuguese started to populate our lands and take advantage of our beautiful tropical weather and natural beauty to produce sugar cane and other goodies. By 1808, when we already had lots of African slaves and not as many Indians as we used to have, the Portuguese crown transferred the seat of government from Lisbon to Rio de Janeiro, fleeing Napoleon´s army. That was when our dear Prince Pedro, son of the King Don João, arrived in our country and fell in love with all this heat that we have here. In 1815, the King declared Brazil a kingdom, equal with Portugal.

By 1820 a political revolution erupted in Portugal, and the Royal Family had to return. Of course that the Prince wanted to stay, and even after the demand of the Portuguese Assembly for his return and for the return of Brazil to its former condition of colony, he stayed. Finally, in 1822 Don Pedro shouted the cry of the independency, becoming the Emperor of Brazil.

If you wish to learn more about our history, we recommend the book: A Concise History of Brazil – FAUSTO, Boris – Cambridge University Press, 1999, that gives a good overview of our history from the colony period to the first decades of the twentieth century.

There is also a great Brazilian movie from 1995, called Carlota Joaquina, that tells the story of the Queen, mother of Prince Pedro. The movie is about her life, but it’s a great (and very fun) motion picture of Brazil while the Royal Family was around here.


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5 de September de 2012

:: Culture & History @en

Brazilian fanatic football fans have finally chose the name of the Fifa 2014 World Cup Official Ball! The result of the voting came out this week – we had to choose between “Bossa Nova” symbolizing this Brazilian rhythm famous on the 6o’s, “Carnavalesca” or “Brazuca”, the chosen one.

“Brazuca” is an informal term that we use to describe national pride in the Brazilian way of life. Mirroring our approach to football, it symbolizes emotion, pride and goodwill to all.

Unfortunately the ball is currently being developed, se we will have to settle we the picture that Fifa launches on how it is going to look like!

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