Still the hottest kid on the Ipanema block, the Fasano raised the bar for Rio's luxury hotels when it opened in 2007, forcing even the Copacabana Palace to sit up and take notice. Attracting an exclusive clientele, the likes of Madonna and Beyoncé have stayed, meaning you never know quite who you might be sharing breakfast with. The Fasano family has also been at the forefront of Brazilian gastronomy since 1900, starting out in São Paulo where the Parigi and Gero restaurants and another Fasano are among the best in a city full of options.
The hotel restaurant here follows their lead, while the rooftop pool bar is widely regarded as the place in the city to enjoy a swim with a breathtaking view or an early evening cocktail, Ipanema beach sweeping up before you with the road practically hidden by some clever angles. Downstairs, the hotel bar Londra attracts a mix of soap actors and society types, and entry and drinks are priced to maintain an air of exclusivity. The interior design is impressive throughout, but rooms are dimly lit and much smaller than at the similarly priced Copacabana Palace, while the unnecessary add-on costs of internet connection and breakfast (R$85) given Fasano's daily rates leaves a bit of a sour taste for anyone not here on expenses.