The Guanabara Palace stands proudly on the chugging exhaust-fume-battered Rua Pinheiro Machado, a beautiful new paint job and golden details finally completed at the end of 2011 after months hidden behind scaffolding. It is the fifth and most comprehensive refit of the 1854 building that has seen governors come and go and is now the seat of power of the state government. Its new role has also closed it to the general public for the time being, but a peer through the windows reveals rich red carpets, gleaming staircases and regal opulence that deserves to be viewed. The immaculate gardens are equally off limits for the time being, although a polite request at reception will usually be enough (along with not wearing shorts) to get a quick snoop.
28 May 2013.