A Travellerspoint blog

Copacabana Palace


sunny 31 °C

This was definately a night to remember...

Will and I were so excited and that was only when we were in our hotel room putting on grown up clothes and make up..well maybe the make up bit was me but it is weird to think we have only been wearing thongs, boardies, singlets everyday for the past month and so to actually wear nice clothes is an occasion in itself.

We had been told that Katie Holmes and Tom Cruise were staying at the Hotel so fingers were crossed that we would accidently sit next to them..infact Will and i were so convinced we would see them that we had started to rehearse our conversation about what we would say and that Katie (not Tom, who by the way we imagined sitting on a pile of directories to make him the same height as Katie) would ask us to join them and then we would end up going out and having drinks etc etc... (perhaps this is a result of spending a solid month of experiencing the exact same things and running out of conversation based on truth and facts..)...?

Moving on...the Hotel itself was beautiful, we pretended the textured marble floor, the golden door handles, the rich mahogony desk tops, the old men with gorgeous Brazilian models on each arm were something we saw everyday. The Restaurant Cipriani was located on one side of the pool. We were greeted by a pianist (haha love that word) in a tuxedo playing some lovely song and were shown our table..which Will had specifically asked for..right by the window overlooking the pool and beach front...

Under strict instructions to order whatever i liked and not look at the price was probably an oversight on Will's behalf and i would say for future reference please look at menu before making outrageous comments as such. Anyway not to disapoint Will, we had drinks on arrival, Bellini for the lady and Stella for gentleman. Also which was another highlight of mine (if only Will knew this is what it took to please me) was the bread basket...im talking mini little WARM breadrolls which contained magical goodness such as olives, herds, cheese, spices, chilli, caramelised onions, breadsticks..having no will power i had to try everyone (twice)..and because Will was saving himself i secretly found myself making excuses so that he wouldnt think i was the hugest bread pig..the old " oh dam, i have already tried this one i thought it was a different, just trying to taste them all, better eat it anyway.."..was used quite alot..

We got an apetizer which we didnt really catch what they said but im sure it was something like.. "mini heaven in a cup"

Entree was beef carpaccio (Jules you would have loved it) and it melted in our mouths..

By the way still no sign of Katie, which was a shame because according to our earlier rehearsed dialogue it was about at this time we started to chat to them..hrmmm this left us in a bit of a pickle..what to talk about...yes mains are on their way...

Will ordered the ravioli with fresh crab meat..it was amazing, very italian, the kind where you actually only get one ravioli the size of a serviette and then sitting underneath was a pile of fresh crab with a to die for sauce..

I got scampi on mashed polenta with a tomatoey sauce..equally as amazing and well i dont want to be biast i did try both and id probably say mine was the better choice...hahaha

All topped off with a fabulous Argentinian red in huge glasses you could practically swim in..

We were actually both so full we couldnt even fit coffee or dessert..but luckily they bring out petite fours which once again i had to try all of them..absolutely delectable..mmm my mouth is watering just thinking about it...

All in all it was the most amazing and memorable night..id like to publicly thank my fantastic boyfriend for a perfect night..

P.s we are now coming home 3 months earlier due to a money shortage

Posted by willandsam 05:14 Archived in Brazil Tagged round_the_world Comments (1)

Brazil - an overview

overcast 27 °C

We have just arrived in Rio after a very interesting week in Bombinhas, where we were the only people in town who spoke any english. And when i say that i mean the guy who ran the place we stayed said he hadnt seen a westerner (ie American / Brit / Aussie) for 5 years. Yes, we stood out worse than a clown at a funeral.
Anyways, after being in Brazil for a week, we have come to some interesting conclusions....


1. ...Rat like dogs roam the landscape, with no recognisable articles indicating ownership. They will eat anything. Scraps, dirt, your arm etc. Do not trust them, Do not make eye contact. Just keep moving.
2. ...Horses inhabit most of the major towns. They just walk around like they own the place. Nobody owns them either. Fur a guide on how to treat them, see above instructions for rat dogs.
3. ...You cant flush toilet paper. We have found that years of flushing toilet paper has left us with a natural urge to do it. This has resulted in some wet fingers.
4. ...There seems to be a national shortage of swimming costume material. G strings seem like the consevative option. In fact, there is a style of costume called fio dentale, which literally translates to dental floss. This may seem like a good thing. Its not. These swimmers are worn by everyone from 14 to 60. Gender not an issue.
5. ...Its hot. Not normal 30 degrees go to the beach hot, but as if you opened the oven hot. It makes you want to go and stand in the fridge for several hours a day.
6. ...There are three setting in your shower. Boiling, freezing, and a couple of degrees below boiling. The rationale is once you give yourself third degree burns, you can calm down by applying semi freezing water. Its a failsafe system.
7. ...The average dinner starts at 10pm. Children seem not to sleep at all, perhaps explained by the custom of giving your 2 year old child the dregs of your cappuccino. The average family dinner ends at 2am.
8. ... There are clubs that dont open till 3am. We are too old for this. There is one club that doesnt open till 9am. And shuts at 2pm. On Sundays. Clearly they dont work here, and yet they wonder why the west holds the balance of economic power.
9. ...Cake is served for breakfast. And thats it. Just cake, and maybe coffee. But that is just to wash down the cake.
10. Women share a genetic abnormality known as The Balloon Effect. On their 40th birthday they go from a size 8 to a size 28. We think they are given a bucket of KFC on their wedding day.

All this and we havent even explored Rio yet... Expect things to get weirder....

Will and Sam x

Posted by willandsam 05:43 Archived in Brazil Tagged tips_and_tricks Comments (7)

Valentine's Day in Brazil..

Not eyedeal...

sunny 28 °C

This entry is dedicated to Nashie - One of our most devoted subscribers whose boring and mundane life is made exciting for the brief minutes he reads this blog...

Well im pretty sure Brazil does not celebrate Valentine's Day and if they do there is definitely no evidence of flowers, chocolates or stuffed bears in the streets of Bombinhas. Will and I being on a tight budget and also spending a 17hour bus trip on the actual day of valentines day had decided not to do anything...or so i thought...

My gorgeous, adorable, loving, caring, funny, amazing boyfriend (Will) decided to surpirse me the day before with a reservation to the best restaurant in Rio. He had sneakily spent days researching restaurants without my knowledge (which is pretty difficult considering we spend every second together and always sit next to each other in the internet cafe peaking over each others shoulders)..but he managed to surprise me...well played McCloy, well played..as a result we are spending Monday night at the Hotel Cipriani which is situated the Copacabana Palace. I am so excited i have already checked out the menu online and possible could name every meal they serve including matching wines...

Knowing that i will be clearly upstaged and deciding that a Brazilian flag sarong probably isnt the ideal Valentines gift i decide that good old fashion pampering might be the way to go.. breakfast in bed etc..

So the morning of i put my alarm on early roll over gently pat Will on the back, whisper happy Vantines's Day and plant a big kiss on his cheek. Eagerly awaiting for Will to reciprocate my actions i stay still only to discover he has a look of half confusion half disgust plastered on his face...all he can manage to say is.."mirror..face..eyes..go" ...

Just as confused i stumble to the bathroom sonly to see that my eyes have swollen to the size of two michelen babies. It looks asthough my eyelids have consumed 30 donuts over night (each).. I have difficulty seeing out my right eye and my left eye although swollen isñ't quite as bad. AS i peel back the many layers of my eyelids i see a small red dot which i believe is to be from the many mozzies..

Here is the problem with Bombinhas...mosquitoes... each night i go to bed and literally cover my whole body with aeroguard, i awake itching and so reapply as many as 3 times per night..mind you whilst im scatching Will is peacefully sleeping with not a singly mozzie flying his way. That night i guess the only place i didnt place the aeroguard was my EYELIDS and so the clever little devils found solace in my delicate eyelid skin.

Slowly images fade of a romantic morning with my gorgeous boyfriend and are replaced with Will yelling.."Adriaaaaaan" and jumping around the room boxing whilst rattling off other Rocky quotes..

Oh well lets hope it goes down by Monday night..Happy Valentines Day...


Posted by willandsam 05:25 Archived in Brazil Tagged round_the_world Comments (4)

The bus trip from hell...

oh yes, from hell...

sunny 35 °C

We have already written about how good Argentinian buses are... Well, Brazilian buses do not quite live up to that high standard. We left Foz do Iguazu to take the bus to Bombinhas, a little coastal town south of Sao Paulo where we could relax proir to the hectic Carnavale in Rio. Sitting in the bus station we had only $5 real (around AUS$2.50) to our name, as all the ATMS in brazil dont work for some reason. We had travelled on the class of bus known as Leito, which roughly translates as 1st class, in Argentina, and our bus to Bombinhas was semi Leito, so how much different could it be?
This banged up 30 year old dented bus sputtered its way into the bus station, and Sams jaw dropped about a foot. ´Surely this cannot be our bus´she squeaked... After a little bit of soul searching we got on and were tyreated to the worst 16 hours of our lives so far. I wont go into too much detail save to say that the clientele matched the surroundings.
One high point of the trip was when the bus was pulled over by the federales... that is, the gun toting, bullet proff jacket wearing, night time aviator wearing brazilian federal cops... Bags were searched, passports were checked, and some people were kicked off the bus, to be left by the side of the road miles form any sort of civilisation..
Énglish?´ he barked at us from behing a cuban cigar...
´No, No.. Australián´we replied..
óh, good good... kangaroo` he grinned as we sat down, very relieved.
Getting to Florianpolis we realised that away formt he main tourist centres, noone at all speaks any english. Much pointing and charades ensued as we got a ticket to Itapema, the next stop on our never ending mission top Bombinhas. Another bus fom Itapema and we were finally there, 21 hours after we started..
We dragged ourselves to the Hostel, only to be told that they knew nothing of our reservation and that they were booked out. A minor meltdown happened as we realised we were stuick in the middle of nowhere with no accom and no idea what to do next.
The lady took pity on us, made some phobe calls and the next thing we were installed in a hotel up the road, sea views, and a big jug of Caipirinhas in hand...
Sometimes thiongs turn out well when they really shouldnt....

Posted by willandsam 07:02 Archived in Brazil Tagged round_the_world Comments (1)

Hostels: A Guide

Travel Tip 2: Only stay in small hostels

If you are over the age of, say... 19, it is key to stay in small hostels. We have now stayed in a variety of different size ones, the biggest being in Puerto Iguazu, which housed at least 250 smelly backpackers. When you get 250 travellers wqho are all between 18-24, everyone feels that the right thing to do is get completewly blind all night, yell loud spanish swear words and sleep naked right next to you. Nobody knows anybopdy esle as everyone is in big groups. You can meet anyone and, well, the nude sleeping thing is enough of a reason right?
Small hotels are cosy, they dont hassle you for money for everything, you meet everyone and they are all friendly.. and the whole purpose of travelling is to meet people from across the world...

Posted by willandsam 06:51 Archived in Argentina Tagged tips_and_tricks Comments (0)

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