News from Brazil

Brazil Weekly Culture & Regional News

In Brazil on July 31, 2011 at 10:47 am

PROJECT OF THE WEEK

Render of the public transport Terminal Rodoviário Pátio Alcântara for  São Gonçalo, Rio de Janeiro state (Skyscrapercity).

MEDIA

Brazilian political journalist Auro Ida, 53, was murdered in Cuiabá, Mato Grosso. He was sitting in his car with his girlfriend when two men approached the couple, asked the woman to get out of the car, and then shot Ida six times. Police immediately described it as a crime of passion. But journalists said Ida – the founder of Mídia News and a writer for the Olhar Direto news site – had received death threats related to his coverage of regional politics (The Guardian).

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RIO STATE

The terrible tragedy of Região Serrana in early January this year has, unfortunately, been further tainted with allegations of corruption and the diverting of disaster relief funds into private pockets. Former councilman Odenir Cardoso Moreira, better known as “Quincas,” is currently being investigated by the Polícia Militar (Military Police) for the misappropriation of relief funds intended for the city of Teresópolis after the worst natural disaster in modern Brazilian history (The Rio Times).

Life in Rio de Janeiro may seem like nonstop action, which can leave even the most die-hard Carioca craving a slower pace. Yet those looking for some R&R need look no farther than across the bay to Niterói. Notably quieter than its raucous neighbor, Niterói has a laid back culture all its own. And there’s no better way to get a taste of the easy-going “Smile City” than by spending a day strolling through its street markets (The Rio Times).

RIO

Last year the Rio Times published a series of articles on apartment rental options at various price points in Rio. Now, amidst a overheated market seeing 30-50 percent increases in real estate value, the Rio Times look again at the apartments you can expect to find for R$3,500 per month, a year later. Again focusing on five popular neighborhoods in Rio’s Zona Sul (South Zone) – Ipanema, Leblon, Copacabana, Botafogo and Flamengo – to give a sense of some neighborhoods most popular with foreigners in the “Cidade Maravilhosa” (The Rio Times).

The arrival of soccer’s governing body in Brazil for its first official event ahead of the 2014 World Cup meant the country’s second-busiest airport was temporarily shut. Rio de Janeiro’s Santos Dumont International Airport was closed for four hours between 2 p.m. and 6 p.m. local time on July 30 as FIFA hosted the qualification draw for the next edition of sport’s most-watched event (Bloomberg).

Rio de Janeiro’s famous Maracaná stadium will host the final of the 2014 World Cup in Brazil, FIFA secretary general Jerome Valcke indicated, pending formal ratification of the decision at FIFA executive committee meeting in October (MercoPress).

At least 14 current and former policemen were arrested in Rio de Janeiro in an operation aimed at taking down a militia group, including high ranking officers accused of leading the organization. The group was active in west Rio, and was allegedly led by a retired Federal Police chief, a Civil Police commissioner, and a military policeman (Insight Crime).

SAO LUIS

Reminiscent of Rio’s world famous Carnival with wild street parties, elaborate costumes, and loud parades playing Afro-Brazilian music, is São Luís’ Bumba-meu-boi festival. Celebrating the month of São João (Saint John), the festival lasts from June to July and attracts visitors from across Brazil and around the world (The Rio Times).

SAO PAULO

Vale and the state government of São Paulo signed a memorandum of understanding to invest in the development of the state and enhance its logistics infrastructure in the coming years. The agreement was signed at Bandeirantes Palace at a ceremony attended by Governor Geraldo Alckmin (picture). Vale, which has logistics and fertilizer operations in the state of São Paulo, plans to invest approximately R$3.5 billion. The resources will mainly be used to expand Vale’s port activities in Santos, extend its multi-mode stockyards and build warehouses at the port (Vale).

Poet Mário de Andrade called São Paulo ‘the hallucinated city’, and his words are a fitting description of this enormous metropolis. The city is 455 years old, but its soul remains still young and restless. Shaking off 300-plus years of sloth-like growth, it careered through the 20th century at breakneck speed, and continues to grow. So it’s not surprising, perhaps, that a huge number of expats are now calling the city home, and are bristling if anyone thinks they’re hallucinating. São Paulo is a giant that slumbers no more (Time Out Sao Paulo).

Sao Paulo is a vibrant hub for jewellery shoppers seeking exquisite and rare Brazilian gemstones set in precious metals. While bargains are hard to find because of high tax rates, determined shoppers can negotiate discounts (Reuters).

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