Wednesday, November 2, 2011

National Holiday? See the City.

You may remember TimeIrado's trip to the Sao Paulo Zoo three weeks ago on the first National Holiday we were in Brazil to experience. Today, as previously posted is the celebration of the National Holiday of Day of the Dead. While many Brazilians were in church or spending time at home, we headed out to take in the sights of the city.

After breakfast we headed for our first trip on the Subway here in Sao Paulo. Typically, it is crowded, and not the safest place to be traveling back and forth to work on (when carrying a computer), but we were surprised at how new the Yellow Line was that we were taking from the Paulista Station north to Republica. After a $2.90 BRL ($1.50USD) ride, we arrived at the Praca de Repulica, or Republic Park. Republic Park is also home to a great market on Sundays where you can purchase handcrafted items from local Brazilian artists.

First, we were headed to see three office buildings which were on the list of top things to do here in Sao Paulo, and since they were in the vicinity of a few other sites, we headed to check out the buzz surrounding the Italia Building, Copan Building, and Martinelli Building. The Italia Building, or Edificio Italia, is a 46 story skyscraper home to offices, restaurants and shoppes. Its what you would see in a tradition New York City office building, but had a very interesting rounded design to it. The Copan Building, or Edificio Copan, is a 38 story residential building which is home to many of the upper class Paulistas. The design of the building is incredible as it almost looks like a waving flag with the curvature of the building. The Martinelli Building, is a 30 floor office building which was also the first skyscraper in the Sao Paulo Skyline. The building was modeled after the Empire State Building, complete with observation deck at the top. Unfortunately it was closed due to the holiday, but I've been to the top of the Empire State Building so I am assuming its similar.  These three buildings do stand out in the Sao Paulo architecture however remind me of something you would see in Manhattan.

(Left to Right: Martinelli Building, Copan Building, and Italia Building)

Praca Ramos de Azevedo

Our next stops included the sights and sounds of the Praca Ramos de Azevedo, which is a street located in the central area of São Paulo, near the Valley Anhangabaú, making this a great public space. The square is also located next to the Teatro Municipal de São Paulo, Alexander Mackenzie Building (Sports Light) and Viaduct do Cha, and, along with such spaces, a well-known postcard of the city. The Park was also home to "tent city" a large population of Homeless under the street overpass. 

Teatro Municipal

The Teatro Municipal is voted as the #1 tourist attraction in Sao Paulo and is home to world class concerts of the Symphony and Ballet. Despite notbeing able to go inside (its only open to the public when there are actual classical concerts showing), the outside of the building and the entry way were spectacular. This building was the closest thing I have seen to a Roman style building, and being surrounded by the Praca Ramons de Azevedo, gave it thefeel of a European plaza. Outside of the Teatro there was a commercial being filemed that perhaps we might even extras in once the final cut is made. Lets keep our fingers crossed. 

Mosteiro De Sao Bento
Continuing our quest along the Anhanhabau Valley, we walked toward the Mosteiro De Sao Bento, or Saint Benedict's Monestary. After a short walk, we came upon the Sao Bento Plaza which was a similar feeling of walking up to the Pasteo do Colegio and Cathedral de Se just a few weeks ago. The Sao Bento Plaza is home to the Basilica Abacial de Nossa Senhora da Assuncao, Colegio de Sao Bento, and also a small restaurant. The Monastery is over 400 years old and has a very ornate feel. The detail inside the basilica was impressive and rivaled that of Catedral de Se and the Basilica's I visited in Italy. Inside the church, I ran into a Brazilian wearing an Ohio State sweatshirt which confirms my suspicions that God is an Ohio State Fan!

Luz Train Station
After leaving Sao Bento, Time Irado decided to continue our journey and make the trek to the Luz area of the City which is home to many attractions. We first came across the Estacao de Luz, or Luz Station. Despite being built in 1901, due to recent renovations, the train station was a modern and impressive connector of 6 of the cities rail lines.  We even got to see a couple of photo shoots in the beauty of the area: one for engagement photos of a couple inside the station and the second being a bride having pictures taken outside. Just beyond the station, is the Jardim da Luz, or Praca da Luz. This park is another one of Sao Paulo's many parks and was originally created in 1798 as a botanical garden but later transformed into a public park. Many people were sitting, playing, reading, and working out in the park's spacious green spaces.

Pinacoteca Museum
At one corner of the Park, sits the Pinacoteca do Estado, which is home to modern Brazilian artworks. There are many captivating pieces of art ranging from metal work, photography, portraits, and paintings. There was a large collection of modern art, but perhaps the most popular attraction was a very large, round mirror, that rotated at the top of the rotunda, which left many visitors, including Time Irado, laying on their backs to take pictures in the mirror three stories above. There was also an area you could write on a small piece of paper and use a small magnetic ball to create a message and post it to a wall. Instead of posting mine of the wall, I put it on the basement stairs. See below for the image.

My Artwork

Mirror Shots.
I had many favorite paintings in the museum, but three that stood our are included below. I was able to take a photo (without the flash, its a museum!) to share them share.


After leaving the Pinacoteca, we continued walking through the Park taking in the landscaped beauty before heading to the Subway to head back to our posh neighbor of Paulista Jardins for a late lunch.

The End.

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