Cultural Guide to São Paulo, Brazil
Planning a trip to Brazil and considering spending a couple of days in São Paulo? Here is our little guide with some non-exhausting tips on how to enjoy the best of the city. With a very cosmopolitan environment, São Paulo offers options for food and entertainment that suit all tastes and wallets. As it is not exactly easy for first-time visitors to walk around one of the ten largest cities in the world and find the best addresses, we prepared a small list with insider’s tips on art places and restaurants. 
Any visit to São Paulo must include its biggest symbol: Avenida Paulista. The avenue features shops, restaurants and the most important museum in Latin America: MASP (Sao Paulo Museum of Art). At MASP you can find an important selection of Brazilian and European Art, including works of Renoir, Gauguin, Botticelli, Matisse, Monet, Degas, Picasso, Velázquez, Rembrandt, Van Gogh, among others. The building of the museum itself, projected by Lina Bo Bardi, is considered a symbol of modernism in Brazil, as a huge structure of concrete and glass is supported only in its top and sideways by two lateral beams, leaving 74 meters of freestanding space.

Sao Paolo MASP
– Picture Credits: Mário Rodrigues/VEJA

We also suggest that you check the calendar of the Brazilian Museum of Art – FAAP. The place always holds nice expositions, such as the one on “OsGemeos”, world-famous Brazilian street artists, and, more recently, an interactive exhibition on Hermès. Other great museums to visit are “Museu do Ipiranga”, “Pinacoteca do Estado de São Paulo” and “Museu da América Latina”.

Sao Paolo FAAP
Brazilian Museum of Art – FAAP – “OsGemeos”
– Picture Credits: Lost Art

For architecture fans, the city has some important Niemeyer’s works, including a “must go” spot: the “Ibirapuera Park”. While Niemeyer was responsible for the buildings, Burle Marx developed the landscaping. Both architects collaborated with Le Corbusier in several other projects. Visit the “Oca” and the “Auditório do Ibirapuera”. It is also the perfect place for some jogging or a bike ride!

Sao Paolo Oca
– Picture Credits: Foto: Lilian Miliauskas-SP

If you are an urban art fan, you will find a lot of pleasure walking around “Vila Madalena”, a trendy neighborhood with a vibrant community of artists and bohemians. Nice places to see are “Beco do Aprendiz”, “Beco do Batman” and the panel of Studio Kobra on the sidewall of “Igreja do Calvário”.

 Sao Paolo Beco
“Beco do Aprendiz”
– Picture Credits: Eduardo Vessoni



São Paulo is a city of immigrants and you can find good options of almost every type of cuisine. The city has the largest Italian community living outside Italy, as well as the biggest Japanese community outside Japan. And that says a lot about what you can expect. For good Italian meals go for Famiglia Mancini, Tappo Trattoria or Tatini Restaurante. For the perfect Italian gelato, we recommend Bacio di Latte. If you are looking for trending Japanese restaurants, we suggest Nakka, Jam – Japanese Food, Arts & Music (both addresses), Mori Sushi Ohta and Osaka. Best burgers in town are Z-Deli, Butcher’s Market, Bar. and St. Louis. If you are missing France, some good options are Ici Brasserie, Le Jazz Brasserie, La Casserole and Le Vin Bistro. For those with a food allergy or those that prefer to eat healthy, nice gluten-free and lactose-free places are Lilóri and Maíz.

Sao Paolo JAM
JAM – Japanese Food, Arts & Music
 – Picture Credits: Tadeu Brunelli

But if you really want to try typical Brazilian food, we have some special advice:

  • For the very typical dish “feijoada” (a stew of beans with pork and other meats), go to Restaurante do Bolinha or Bar do Juarez. Brazilians love to eat feijoada with their number one drink: “caipirinha”(a traditional cocktail made with “cachaça”, fruit slices – usually lemon -, sugar and ice). For smoother options, ask for vodka or sake instead of “cachaça”. Almost every bar/club and restaurant in São Paulo serves “caipirinhas”.

Sao Paolo restaurant
Restaurante do Bolinha –
Picture Credits: Paulo Pampolin/Hype/Folhapress

  • For the famous “rodízios” (a typical “all you can eat” type of restaurant where the price of the meal include everything but drinks and dessert) in “churrascarias” (the Brazilian version of barbecue with lots and lots of food), we suggest Fogo de Chão or Rodeo.

Sao Paolo Fogo
“Fogo de Chão”
– Picture Credits: Daniel Ozana/Folhapress

  • For contemporary versions of Brazilian Food, you might like Maní (one star Michelin), Tordesilhas and O.M (two stars Michelin).
  • You can also find in every bar in town, as well as some outdoor markets and bakeries, cheap Brazilian food such as “Pastel”, “Coxinha”,“Bolinha de Queijo” and “Pão de Queijo”. Please try some!


We hope you enjoyed our little guide! If you have other tips, leave them on the comments bellow!

Paris Fashion Week Spring/Summer 2016

The seats of the Milan Fashion Week has just been cleared on Monday, and Paris takes on the final leg of the “Big Four” of fashion. In case you have been living under a rock, it is now Paris Fashion Week; from 29th September to 7th October, designers will be showcasing their work prêt-à-porter for the S/S season of 2016. Since Tuesday is more of a travel day for the teams from Milan to Paris, today is the day when we actually start working.

9 days, 91 fashion shows.

There is not a moment to lose! For those not too familiar with PFW, here’s an info graph to you a brief idea to wrap around:                                                                       alfa

Chanel, Dior, Apart from the classics such as Saint Laurent, Vuitton, and Chloé, we are also welcoming new faces this year in Paris: Aalto, Nehera, Kocher, Vêtements, and Off-White.

  Big events include:

1) The return of Courrèges

2) Last runway show for Alexander Wang

Yes you read it right, after three years as the head of creation for Balanciaga, A. Wang is bowing out after this last show.

Let’s have a recap of what we missed yesterday:

The newbies Aalto (Nordic style with a Parisian touch) and Koché (street and artisanal savoir-faire) showed their work.

The Row decamped to do its presentation in Paris instead of New York this year, presented their first shoe collection, and the Olsen sisters held court on the Rue des Francs Bourgeois at 3pm.

Anrealage was at Palais de Tokyo, with deliberate photo camera flashes strategically placed around the runway (and even with your phones!) to show patterns and colours that cannot be seen by the naked eye.


This crisp morning started off with the return of Courrèges, who showed only 15 designs in 15 different materials and colours, with new artistic duo Sébastien Meyer and Arnaud Vaillant in charge.

Then we moved on to Christopher Lemaire, whose collaboration with Muji goes on sale this week! 

We are also expecting John Galliano, Off-White (by Virgil Abloh, finalist for LMVH 2015), Dries Van Noten, Rochas, and Vionnet. The latter will be opening its Paris store with a party on Thursday night.

For those of you lucky enough to be invited, Swarovski is holding a cocktail party tonight at Salons France-Amérique for the brand’s 120th anniversary

Upcoming shows to watch out for:

1 October Thursday:

Chloé, Balmain (BFF of Kim, who has collaboration with H&M coming up, more on that later), Lanvin, Vêtements (a finalist of LVMH 2015)


Balmain Spring/Summer 2016

2 October Friday:  Christian Dior (Raf Simons <3) , Isabel Marant (la Parisienne that we adore), Balenciaga (ALEXANDER WANG’s LAST SHOW)  cannot emphasise this enough. 

Dior Fashion Show Ready to Wear Collection Spring Summer 2016 in Paris

Dior Fashion Show Ready to Wear Collection Spring Summer 2016 in Paris


Alexander Wang Collection

3 October Saturday:

Haider Ackermann (dubbed the new YSL), Acne Studios (Swedish, cool intello style), Comme des Garçons (tomboy)

4 October Sunday: (yes, we are working on a Sunday)

Kenzo (always crazier, but always in), Céline (need I say more), Maison Rabih Kayrouz (Lebanese elegance), John Galliano, Alexander McQueen

5 October Monday:

Stella McCartney (fresh, feminine, eco-friendly, and thus no leather, no fur), Esteban Cortazar (remember Sex & the City?), Saint Laurent

6 October Tuesday:

Chanel (clichéd, but where would we be without Karl?), Agnès b. (the Parisian B&W), Valentino (delicate Italian elegance), Iris van Herpan (transcended to an art), Shiatzy Chen (Chinese chic, yes it exists)

7 October Wednesday:

Louis Vuitton, Miu Miu, Allude (cachemere <3)

For those of you who will be watching the shows from the comfort of your homes or dormitories, here are the activities that you can do to be more involved for this week, because la mode aime Paris.

Le Dressing de Rêve des Parisiens: A free exhibition held at l’Hôtel de Ville from 8 September to 31 October, celebrating 50 new Parisian fashion houses. You can also buy the Parisian fashion guide of the same name there, in bookstores around Paris or on boutique.paris.fr

La mode aime Paris: Emmanuel Lardier of the ELLI group will be demonstrating the traditional techniques of fashion sketches on 1October from 3pm to 6pm at les Papeteries Réaumur. For more details:

Conference at La Fabrique: on the subject of the evolution of Fashion. La Fabrique is a fashion institution here in Paris, after the conference you may roam in the gallery of the school where you will be able to see the works of students corresponding to this event. On 1 October, from 2pm to 4pm, and it’s free. You will be La Fabrique at 6-8 Avenue de la Porte de Champerret 75017.

Fashion open studio with Parsons: The prestigious fashion institution will be opening its doors on 3 October from 10am to 3pm, at 45 rue Saint-Roch 75001.

Institut Française de la Mode: there will be a free exhibition of the institution’s postgraduates’ work from 2:30pm to 5pm on 3 October at 36 Quai d’Austerlitz 75013, and a talk will be held at 4pm on the IFM’s pedagogic approach, with some advice for young designers to boot.

And many more open days for different fashion institutes around Paris… and of course parties.

So put on your stilettos and your loafers, and make the most out of PFW, because the next time we’ll be seeing any of this will be in spring, when the snow melts.

So put on your stilettos and your loafers, and make the most out of PFW, because the next time we’ll be seeing any of this will be in spring, when the snow melts.

Athena Kerin Tong