More athletes book their spot in Rio for 2016

456696546.jpgIn recent weeks the USA women’s basketball team has booked its place at the Rio Olympics alongside the USA men’s team. Both won their respective world championships.

Also through are the Colombia women’s football team who qualified by coming second to Brazil in the Copa America. The women’s football tournament at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games will be contested by 12 teams. In addition to Brazil and Colombia, there will be three European teams, two from Africa, two from Asia, two from North and Central America and one from Oceania. Places will be allocated according to the results of continental qualifying competitions.

The first two hockey teams have also won their places at the Rio Olympic Games, with India’s men and the Republic of Korea’s women confirming their berths by winning the gold medals at the recent Asian Games, in Incheon, the Republic of Korea.

The men’s and women’s hockey tournaments will each feature 12 teams. Five berths in each gender will be obtained through continental tournaments, such as the Asian Games, while six will be won through the 2014/2015 Hockey World League. The 12th spots are reserved for Brazil if the host nation’s teams achieve performance criteria set by the International Hockey Federation.

coreia_do_sul_-_asian_hockey_federationFive more countries have confirmed their places in the shooting competition following the world championships when 27 nations booked their spots. The Shooting Championship of the Americas, held in Guadalajara, México, has confirmed a further 11 places. Cuba claimed the largest number of berths by winning five events, while the USA took three spots. The Dominican Republic, El Salvador and Ecuador won one place each.

China was top of the shots at 51st International Shooting Sport Federation World Championship in September 2014, winning nine berths for the first Olympic Games in South America. Germany, the Republic of Korea, Italy and Russia each claimed five spots, while France and Slovakia secured three places.

The other nations to win places at Rio 2016 were Australia, Belarus, Spain, USA, Great Britain, Norway, Serbia, Ukraine and Vietnam (two each), Bulgaria, Chinese Taipei, People’s Democratic Republic of Korea, Croatia, Denmark, Egypt, Slovenia, Hungary, India, Czech Republic and Turkey.

scott.jpgSailing has delivered the largest bulk of Rio 2016 Olympic Games qualifiers yet, as 138 places – more than half of the sport’s total for the event – were won at the ISAF Sailing World Championships in Santander, Spain.

New Zealand, Great Britain and France finished as the top-performing nations, all claiming berths in each of the 10 Olympic classes. A total of 39 countries won places in Brazil.

The other 36 nations that won Rio 2016 places were: Denmark (7), the Netherlands (7), Italy (7), Australia (6), Spain (5), the USA (5), Russia (5), Sweden (5), Austria (4), China (4), Croatia (4), Finland (4), Norway (4), Germany (3), Ireland (3), Japan (3), Poland (3), Portugal (2), Lithuania (2), Israel (2), Argentina (2), Cyprus (2), Belgium (2), Canada (2), Slovenia (2), Greece (2), Switzerland (2), Belarus, Estonia, Guatemala, Hungary, the Virgin Islands, Mexico, the Czech Republic, Singapore and Tunisia.

In total, 274 boats will compete in Guanabara Bay at the Olympic Games. In addition to the 138 that qualified in Santander, a further 47 will win their places at the 2015 world championships and 75 at continental qualifiers held in 2015 and 2016. Brazil will be allocated 10 places and the remaining four spots will be by invitation by the International Sailing Federation.

LATAM opens its new airport lounge in São Paulo

15455946609_6b2c783ca2_zThe LATAM Airline Group has opened its new VIP lounge at the new Terminal 3 in São Paulo International Airport in Guarulhos, that will benefit pasengers connecting to-and-from Rio de Janeiro over São Paulo.

The lounge is for passengers flying with TAM or LAN in business or first, as well as passengers flying on oneworld alliance members that include British Airways, American, and Iberia.

The lounge covers an area of 1.800 m², and can accommodate 450 passengers at any one time. It operates daily from 05.00 to midnight.

15455953389_0bdd567386_z15457281910_981b989d82_z15643736442_3e33e99e6e_z15456653247_02efcd57f2_z15643735442_3c29526062_zLATAM SP

Rio’s best restaurants in 2014

4225014507_d83849c1f8_zWeekly news magazine, Veja, has published its annual list of the best restaurants and bars in Rio de Janiero. The choice is made both by a specially chosen jury of experts as well as the votes of the readers of Veja Rio.

Here is Veja’s selection with the official jury choice listed first, and the public’s choice second. You will note they do not always agree!


Asian: Mee / Sawasdee Bistrô

6922686268_6296c56fba_zBrazilian: Roberta Sudbrack / Aprazível (photo)

Buffet: Celeiro / Ráscal

Cheap and Cheerful: Botequim / Gutessen Café e Restaurante

Contemporary: Laguiole / Quadrucci

Dessert: Oro / Demi-glace

4187733709_0fc4bc2874_zFrench: Olympe (photo) / CT Brasserie

Italian: Gero / CT Trattorie

Japanese: Sushi Leblon / Manekineko

Meat: Giuseppe Grill / Outback Steakhouse

Meat – Barbecue Rodízio: Fogo de Chão / Fogo de Chão

Pizza: Capricciosa / Bráz

Seadfood: Satyricon / Satyricon

Special set Menu: Irajá / Irajá

Also voted for were:

Chef of the Year: Pedro de Artagão (Irajá) / Claude Troisgros (Olympe, CT Boucherie, CT Trattorie, CT Brassserie)

Upcoming Chef: Rafael Costa e Silva, (Lasai) / Fred Barroso (Le Vin Bistrô)

Restaurateur of the Year: Marcelo Torres (Best Fork) / Claude Troisgros (Grupo Troisgros)

Cecília Aldaz, of Oro was voted sommelier of the year; Aprazível had the best wine list; Bazzar was elected best wine bar; and the best wine store was Mistral.


Balcony / Stand Up: Adega Pérola / Adega Pérola

9733863166_4e12718102_zBeer / Chope: Botto Bar / Botto Bar (photo)

Beer List: Delirium / Aconchego Carioca

“Bolinhos”: Aconchego Carioca / Aconchego Carioca

Boteco: Momo / Aconchego Carioca

Drinks List: Paris Bar / Complex Esquina 111

Food: Cachambeer / Adelos

Gastrobar: Pipo / Complex Esquina 111

For couples: Bar Veloso /Complex Esquina 111

Music: Godofredo Rio / Botto Bar

View: Bar do Alto / Bar Urca (photo)



Bread: La Bicyclette / Boulangerie Guerin

Breakfast: Empório Jardim / Empório Jardim

“Brigadeiro” (sweets): Fabiana D’Angelo / Colher de Pau

Cake: Café Sorelle / The Bakers

Chocolate: Q / Kopenhagen

4189567301_7187531f2b_z“Coxinha” (croquettes): Da Gema / Confeitaria Colombo (photo)

Éclair: Guerin / Kurt

Hamburger: Comuna / Reserva T.T. Burger

Ice Cream: Vero / Venchi

Juices: Jaeé / BB Lanches


Brazil picks “The Way He Looks” for the 87th Oscars

A046_C002_0101D2Daniel Ribeiro’s Hojé eu Quero Voltar Sozinho (The Way He Looks) has been chosen to represent Brazil in the Foreign Language Film category at the 87th Academy Award. The film, which won the Teddy Award and FIPRESCI prize at the 2014 Berlin Film Festival, tackles LGBT issues.

Set against the music of Belle and Sebastian, Ribeiro’s coming of age tale is a fun and tender story about friendship and the complications of young love. Leo is a blind teenager who is fed up with his overprotective mother and the bullies at school. Looking to assert his independence, he decides to study abroad to the dismay of his best friend, Giovana. When Gabriel, the new kid in town, teams with Leo on a school project, new feelings blossom in him that make him reconsider his plans. Meanwhile, Giovana, grows jealous of this new found companionship as tensions mount between her and Leo.

A record 83 countries have submitted films for consideration in the Foreign Language Film category for the 87th Academy Awards. The nominations will be announced 15 January 2015 in Los Angeles.The other Latin American submissions are:

Argentina, “Wild Tales,” Damián Szifrón, director;
Bolivia, “Forgotten,” Carlos Bolado, director;
Brazil, “The Way He Looks,” Daniel Ribeiro, director;
Chile, “To Kill a Man,” Alejandro Fernández Almendras, director;
Colombia, “Mateo,” María Gamboa, director;
Costa Rica, “Red Princesses,” Laura Astorga Carrera, director;
Cuba, “Conducta,” Ernesto Daranas Serrano, director;
Dominican Republic, “Cristo Rey,” Leticia Tonos, director;
Ecuador, “Silence in Dreamland,” Tito Molina, director;
Mexico, “Cantinflas,” Sebastián del Amo, director;
Panama, “Invasion,” Abner Benaim, director;
Peru, “The Gospel of the Flesh,” Eduardo Mendoza, director;
Uruguay, “Mr. Kaplan,” Álvaro Brechner, director;
Venezuela, “The Liberator,” Alberto Arvelo, director.


Veterans and new faces shine in competition at Festival do Rio 2014

IMG_1813Latin America’s biggest annual celebration of cinema closed on Wednesday 8 October by handing out its traditional Première Brasil ‘Redentor’ trophies, which highlight new work by home grown filmmakers, as well as recognising filmmakers in other categories.

The Premiere Brazil awards were dominated in the fiction category by Pernambuco director Lírio Ferreira’s (photo) drama Sangue Azul (Blue Blood) that offers a parallel between cinema and circus and speaks of the sea, art and love. The film took home three prizes including Best Feature, Best Director and Best Supporting Actor for Rômulo Braga.

Director Ferreira is something of a Festival do Rio veteran having screened previously Árido Mo-vie, Cartola – Música para os olhos and O homem que engarrafava nuvens.

In the feature length documentary competition line up, diretor Theresa Jessouroun’s (photo) À Queima Roupa (Point Blank) which delves into police violence and corruption in the city of Rio over the past twenty years, also picked up the top two prizes in its category, scooping both the Best Film and the festivals new Best Director award for documentaries.

IMG_1817There were double wins for Chico Teixeira’s coming-of-age drama Ausência (Absence), which won the Best Actor Award for the child actor Matheus Fagundes, and also received the Special Jury Prize, as well as for Sao Paulo diretor Gregorio Graziosi’s Obra that ended the night with awards for Best Cinematography for DOP André Brandão as well as receiving the FIPRESCI  prize as the best Latin American film at the festival.

Other prizes given out on the night saw relative newcomer Bianca Joy Porte receive the Best Actress award for her role in director Daniel Aragão’s father and daughter relationship drama Prometo um dia deixar essa cidade (I Swear I’ll Leave This Town), and the Best Supporting Actress award go to Fernanda Rocha for her part in Iberê Carvalho’s O Último Cine Drive-In.

Other special awards saw well-known actor Othon Bastos receive an award for his body of work, while earlier in the festival Mexican director and screenwriter Guillermo Arrriaga had been presented with the FIPRESCI Latin American Personality of the Year award.

Prizes in the Première Brasil Novos Rumos (New Trends) section were presented to Castanha by Davi Pretto for Best Film, while the Best Short award went to O Bom Comportamento (The Good Behaviour) by Eva Randolph. Director Alfeu França received the Special Jury Prize for his 30-minute short A Deusa Branca (The White Goddess).

Of the winning features, six received their world premieres at Festival do Rio.

Once again the public vote from amongst the cinema going public in Rio was at odds with the official jury. The public voted Fellipe Gamarano Barbos’ Casa Grande (photo) best feature length fiction film and Rodrigo Felha’s Favela Gay, which shows the life of the LGBT community in the favelas of Rio de Janeiro, as best documentary.

IMG_1805The public’s favourite short was awarded was to director Andre Amparo’s Max Uber which examines the work of the internationally acclaimed Brazilian visual artist of the same name.

In the Generation’s section the audience award went to Frans Weisz’s Finn from Holland.

The international FIPRESCI jury made up by Ernesto Diez-Martinez (Mexico), Luiz Zanin (Brazil), and Roni Filgueiras (Brazil) chose Brazilian director Gregorio Graziosi’s Obra as the Best Latin American Film at the festival.

Earlier in the event, the festival presented for the first time its new Felix awards, given to recognise the best LGBT films in the festival. Three awards were given in a ceremony at Rio’s prestigious Banco do Brasil cultural centre, CCBB, presented by among others Rio’s re-elected Federal Deputy Jean Wyllys and popular actor Mateus Solano. Reflecting the international reach of the festival, the awards recognized gay filmmaking achievements from Brazil, Australia, Greece, France and Belgium.

IMG_1751The winners were for Best Fiction Feature, Xenia, directed by Panos H. Koutras; for Best Documentary De Gravata e Unha Vermelha (Tie and Red Nail), directed by Miriam Chnaiderman; with a Special Jury Prize for 52 Tuesdays, directed by Sophie Hyde.

Clocks go forward on 19 October 2014

IMG_3349Rio will move its clocks forward one hour at zero hour on Sunday, 19 October. The city will remain on summer time until Sunday, 22 February, the Sunday after carnival.

With summer time in parts of Brazil, the country will have three time zones. The first includes Rio and the country’s capital, Brasília, as well as all the states in the South and South East, as well as Goiás. The second, which is one hour behind, includes the states in the Northeast as well as Pará, Amapá, Tocantins, Mato Grosso and Mato Grosso do Sul. The third, two hours behind Brasília, includes Acre, Amazonas, Roraima and Rondônia.