Casarão Ameno Resedá
Telephone (21) 2558 5547
Located deep in the heart of the Tavares Bastos favela high above Catete, Englishman Bob Nadkarni's inn has developed mythical status as much for its amiable raconteur owner as the monthly word-of-mouth jazz nights. The accommodation isn't bad either, and the rough-and-ready building is under near-constant updating with new towers added or annexes built each year. Simple, private rooms with en-suite and self-service flats with a varanda (R$150-$180) are available, and the views from the upper terrace and dining room are breathtaking, just as long as the weather doesn't turn when things can get hair-raising. The breakfast is big enough to keep you going until sun down plus, since Bob was integral in bringing the BOPE special police headquarters to this favela, drugs and the associated threat of violence are no longer a problem in this particular community.
Most taxis will make the climb (albeit reluctantly in some cases), but the regular VW vans (R$3) head up every ten minutes or so from the corner of Rua Tavares Bastos and Rua Bento Lisboa, leaving when full. Moto-taxis (R$4) - licensed motorbikes - wait on the same corner, but are not for the fain-hearted, especially on the way back down.