B&B overlooking the beach

The Dawning of Brazil’s B&B Age

Many B&Bs are located in the charming, hilltop neighborhood of Santa Teresa. Many of the villas built along steep winding streets in the 19th century have recently been renovated into boutique hotel, intimate guesthouses and B&Bs.

Rio de Janeiro scenic view

Rio’s Alternative Points of View

Unknown to many tourists, there are happily many other Carioca summits that offer alternatively impressive views far from the crowds that flock to Sugarloaf and Corcovado. Michael Sommers points you towards some off the beaten path alternatives.

Santa Teresa rooftop view

Taxi Trouble in Santa Teresa

Michael Sommers had a tough time arranging a taxi to Rio’s Santa Teresa neighborhood. Here’s how to talk reluctant taxi drivers into taking you to one of Rio’s most centrally located, historically rich, and downright charming areas.

The Brazilian flag on a white background.

Obamas Take to the Campaign Trail in Brazil

With impressively loose restrictions on the names that can be placed on ballots, Brazilians are faced with no less than 5 Batmans and 16 Obamas running for office in the country’s upcoming municipal elections, the first round of which takes place on October 7.

Analog clock

Plans and Punctuality

Expat author Michael Sommers often only realizes how “Brazilian” he’s become when he sees himself through foreign eyes. He discusses the flexibility of time and plans that are a part of Brazilian life and which can cause confusion or conflict with those not accustomed to the culture.

A greek temple-facade stands next to a pool fountaining water.

Best Beach Barracas in Fortaleza, Brazil

Throughout the Northeast, beach-going would be unimaginable without the ever-present seaside restaurant-bars where friends and family settle in for a long day of chatting, drinking beer, and nibbling on portions of fried fish and seafood.

The Brazilian flag on a white background.

Reliving Tropicalismo – On and Off Screen

Channeling counterculture and rock n’roll, an eclectic and charismatic collective of artists galvanized fans and critics throughout the country with their shows, albums, performances, and happenings that came to be known collectively as Tropicalismo.

Colonial town of Tiradentes

Food and Lodging that Make the Grade

When Michael first came to Salvador he was overwhelmed by the amount of unique “must-try” Bahian dishes there were to sample. A restaurant-school can provide a great solution for travelers seeking to taste a range of dishes.