Mapplr’s favorite hotels in Rio de Janeiro

view of rio de janeiro

Rio is the ultimate beach and party getaway. If you live in the Northern Hemisphere and dread the coming winter, look no further than Rio. There are other things to do besides hanging out on the beach. Visit the Museum of Contemporary Art (MAC) designed by architect Oscar Niemeyer in Niteroi across the bay from Rio. It’s a futuristic building that looks like a spaceship. Don’t miss the top of Corcovado with the famous Christ the Redeemer statue. The Jardim Botanico (Botanical Gardens) are also a must-see with the most beautiful tropical trees, flowers, orchids and little pathways and ponds.

And if you are going to Carnival, make your hotel reservations now. Here is my list of favorite hotels in Rio.

A word about location: Location is the most important factor in choosing a hotel and in enjoying your stay at a hotel. In Rio, you must think about personal safety when choosing the neighborhood where you will stay. Ipanema and Leblon are the two safest areas in Rio. I have seen women walking home or jogging on the beach, at night, at Ipanema and Leblon, and I never felt unsafe there even late in the evening. But Copacabana’s back streets – just one block from the beach – are not safe at night. Copacabana is also surprisingly much more run down than Ipanema and Leblon.

Santa Teresa is an interesting area, but you cannot walk around at night. It is a neighborhood of steep winding narrow streets with a street car that runs up and down, and you cannot just walk from Santa Teresa to the beach or to anywhere else for that matter. If you decide to stay in Santa Teresa, you will be taking taxis all the time.

Fasano Rio
Ave Vieira Souto 80
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
+55 21 3202 4000
Right on Ipanema beach, this hotel has a swimming pool and bar on the top 8th floor with sweeping views of Ipanema and Leblon; excellent service; rooms with chic contemporary decor, power showers.

Marina All Suites
Av. Delfim Moreira, 696
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
+55 21 2172-1001

Hotel Portinari
Rua Francisco Sá 17 – Posto 6
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
+ 55 21 3222  8800

Mama Ruisa
Santa Teresa
132 rua santa cristina
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
+ 55 21 2242 1281

Relais Solar
Santa Teresa
Ladeira do Meirelles, 32
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
+55 21 2221 2117

Casa Mango Mango
Santa Teresa
Rua Joaquim Murtinho 587
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
+55 21 2508 6440

Santa Teresa
Rua Triunfo, 38
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
+55 21 2252-2549
skype: Castelinho38

La Suite
Rua Jackson de Figueiredo, 501
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
+55 21 24 84 19 62

La Maison
Rua Sergio Porto, 58
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
+55 21 3205-3585

About Esme Vos

Esme Vos is the founder of Mapplr, a travel site featuring boutique hotels, luxury resorts, travel guides and restaurant reviews. You can find her on and Twitter.


  1. We went to Rio a few years ago, it was amazing. I’m heading back to Rio for New Years Eve to shoot our show and do our guidebook. We’re staying at the Fasano, and we’re very excited!