Bianca Gayoso

Reserva do Ibitipoca

  • Where:Lima Duarte
  • Why:Couples retreat.
  • When:December 2013
  • Who:Eight couples (all best friends).
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The hotel has various artwork displayed throughout the property. One of them is the Knotted Gun, a non-violence tribute to John Lennon.

The room is simply perfect: spacious, stylish, romantic, with this Victorian-style bathtub in the corner.

The veranda where you can sit and relax. The hammocks are perfect to chill and observe the nature around you.

Definitely book a massage! Besides the spa, you can choose to have your massage in the middle of nature where you listen to nothing but the water falling and the wind blowing.

The restaurant's cozy dining room.

The wood-fired outdoor jacuzzi and sauna.

An assortment of beers and cachacas displayed in the bar.

Our hike and the view.

Your first impression.

Highs & Lows

  • This secret hideaway in a Brazilian nature reserve, almost four hours away from Rio de Janeiro, is worth every minute spent driving. The hotel is a 3,000 hectares reserve surrounded by rain forests where you choose whether you’d like to chill on a veranda, go for a hike, horseback riding or if you’re lazy, drive to breathtaking settings and waterfalls. Definitely walk to the natural swimming pool and relax with a caipirinha.

  • The service is spectacular! Highly personalized (you can have breakfast at whatever time you want) and charming. Plus, the owner, Renato Machado, was on property and told us about the hotel and how he developed the idea of the hotel.

  • The food! I could write pages about it – it’s fantastic!!! Delicious regional cuisine with local, organic, and super fresh ingredients. I bought some of the cheese to bring home. Probably gained 10 pounds on this trip with all of the amazing food.

  • The rooms are super spacious and comfortable with a rustic, chic design. The bed is one of the best I’ve slept in my life (really!). And the bathroom with a Victorian style bath and shower… amazing! No TV or mini bar – but I loved that.

  • We were a group of eight couples so we had the hotel all to ourselves. If you are traveling with a smaller group you can rent one of the mountain houses, which is part of the hotel as well.

  • Fantastic place to get away from the city. Had an amazing massage with the sound of the waterfall in the background.

The Barometer

  • Design

  • Website

  • Environmental Consciousness

  • Night's Sleep

  • Service

  • Amenities

  • Takeable Treats

  • Refer a Friend

  • Overall Value

  • Life Changing

Total: 50/50

Important Bits

  • Type

    Farmhouse boutique hotel

  • Vibe

    A combination of luxury, simplicity and adventure.

  • Location

    Four hours north of Rio...in the middle of nowhere.

  • Rooms

    8 (alternative accommodation is available in Viradouro's House or in two uphill mountain houses).

  • Music

    Lounge.

  • Year Opened

    Opened in 2009 for visitors.

  • Designed By

    Helio Pellegrino & Marcia Muller

  • Pool/Gym

    Natural pool with a small waterfall, outdoor hot tub, spa, sauna, and yoga classes in the morning.

  • Restaurant

    Not really a restaurant…more of a dining room furnished with a wood burning stove. Guests can either eat at the communal main table or sit at individual tables. At night they have a special dinner setup outdoors.

  • Bar

    Yes.

  • Minibar

    Nope.

  • Children

    Leave them at home and enjoy a getaway…the hotel only welcomes children over the age of 14.

  • Price

    Pricey but worth every penny (btw – it’s also all-inclusive)

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