On Christmas Eve we decided to go to Downton Rio de Janeiro. We went with the sole purpose of going to Confeitaria Colombo but more about that in a bit. Downton Rio is very interesting. It's that fascinating mixture of old and new. You feel like you're in Paris but at the same time it's so New York. The Theatro Municipal is well worth a visit, it's inspired by the gorgeous Paris opera. It must be a gorgeous venue to see a show.
As I said we went Downton for one specific reason: Confeitaria Colombo. Hands down one of the most stunning places I have ever be to. Founded in 1894 by Portuguese immigrants, Confeitaria Colombo (32 Rua Gonçalves Dias) is one of the biggest tourist attractions in Rio de Janeiro. Even Queen Elizabeth II has been here. Everything about this place sings 'Belle Epoque', the mirrors were brought over all the way from Antwerp on the ship, back in the 19th Century this was a massive undertaking. How everything made it over the Atlantic in the ship safely blows my mind.
When we arrived we were lucky enough to grab a table straight away, this is not always the case. You can queue here for ages. There was a piano player in the corner and I was transported to Paris instantly. The service was slow but in all honesty, it just gave you more time to look around and take everything in. We had sandwiches for lunch but the really treat was the dessert. After much back and forth I settled for a pastry with custard and strawberries. The strawberries in Brazil are amazing, so sour and tart it went perfectly with the sweet pastry.
I could have spent hours here and this is a really happy memory I keep thinking back to. The whole Rio de Janeiro experience has really stuck with me. It's such an amazing city.
We're slowly coming to the end of my Rio posts, I hope you've been enjoying them!