Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Luxe et Calme - Aguas de São Pedro

The bar poolside

This weekend my mother-in-law treated her family to a night at the Grande Hotel Aguas de São Pedro. It is a big hotel-management school and hotel about 2 1/2 hours from São Paulo. Anyone who has ever complained about service in Brazil--okay, that is occasionally me--needs to go spend a relaxing weekend there.

Once you pass through the security-guarded gate, you enter a different world. A long driveway leads up to a portico where you drop off your bulletproof car and forget about why you have it. Except for a reminder of real life at the reception desk (providing original state documents for your six year old kids so they know you are not in the child trafficking loop), every single traffic or urban stress moment just melts away.

Quati--a cuter raccoon
The Grande Hotel is a "teaching hotel"--Senac, the hospitality management school, is in charge. The actual school is right around the back of the hotel where it was guarded on a Sunday by two cute quatis.  A teaching hotel means that on a relatively empty weekend, there were people everywhere to assist with whatever you needed. Monitors who took the kids off to play, a driver in a golf cart to take 94-year old grandma around to the pool area, and the people taking drink orders were never far off.

The pool. One of four, actually.

Afternoon tea started at 5 pm--and what a tea it was. 20 choices of actual tea, around 40 choices of edibles. Standouts were a pistachio pie with strawberries and "rabanada", a French toast that puts the American french toast to shame... 

The spread at tea time.

Dinner was at 8 and I don't think I was even slightly hungry...yet, I ate like a madwoman at the dinner buffet. Buffet is a dangerous concept if done right--and it was. You have to try just a little bit of everything, right? Breakfast took an hour to try everything and at lunch, my kids discovered the pasta making man who would whip up whichever recipe you desired. 

There are a few short trails around the property and tennis courts, and a tiny golf course of three holes. Plenty to do, or nothing to do at all. You choose.

I am definitely going back. Soon. Make your own reservation here.

No comments:

Post a Comment