Insolito Boutique Hotel
What We Love
- Breakfast buffet is included in the Jetsetter rate
- Wellness center with a choice of fresh or saltwater swimming pools, private yoga lessons and ofuro, a traditional Japanese bath — a luxury at a small hotel
- Modern guestrooms with ocean or beach views
- Terrace restaurant, A Galeria, for cocktails at sunset
- Eco-friendly: Designer carpets are made of recycled rubber, and museum-quality furniture is fashioned from certified wood
What To Know
- The resort’s beach has chaise longues for guests
- This is more of a romantic escape, so families may want to leave the kids at home
- Town is a 30- to 40-minute walk away — probably worth a taxi
- The resort also hosts events, weddings, conferences and workshops, as well as private beach parties
- Location is remote — the closest airports are 120 miles away; transfers start at $300 for up to 4 people
- Eco friendly
- Free WiFi
- Parking On Site
East of Rio de Janeiro, the sleepy fishing village of Armacao de Buzios — aka Buzios — first awoke in 1964, when a bikini-clad Brigitte Bardot set foot onshore. Now this hip resort area is often called the St.-Tropez of Brazil, and the stylish Insolito Boutique Hotel fits right in. Spilling down a rocky hillside to beautiful Ferradura Beach, this intimate 20-room getaway, once a private villa, has been transformed by a French-born owner and features lush tropical gardens, three pools, a wellness center and sweeping vistas of a beach-studded peninsula and emerald sea.
Bed and Bath
Each of the 20 rooms has a different theme relating to Brazilian art or culture — music, literature, modernism — with each theme imaginatively celebrated in the furniture, the art and even the books on the shelves. My room, “Art Naif,” is dedicated to works produced by artists with no formal training. Regardless of theme, all guestrooms are outfitted with the right amenities — flat-screen TVs, free WiFi, rainfall showers and cozy robes by Trussardie — and a highly modern sensibility. There are two Master Suites — one with a broad balcony, the other with a Jacuzzi (both have sweeping sea views).
With so few rooms, the vibe here is intimate. But the public and patio areas have resort-level amenities: a choice of freshwater and seawater swimming pools, a sauna and steam room, and ofuro, a traditional Japanese bath. The wellness center is dedicated to pampering massages and private yoga sessions in a bucolic setting. Continue the good life with gourmet eats by the bay at the beach lounge restaurant, Eden Beach Club, and fresh fish and seafood with Franco-Brazilian flavors fashioned by chef Mateas in the terrace restaurant. After a day of exploring the area’s 20-some beaches, a barbecue at Parilla — where diners choose from Argentinean, Uruguayan and Brazilian meats — plus a drink at sunset will feel just right.
In the Area
The beautiful beaches are best seen aboard one of Insolito’s two boats reserved exclusively for guests. Also, Geriba Beach is tops with surfers and windsurfers; kitesurfers go to Manguinho. For snorkeling and shallow diving, the beaches of Joao Fernandes and Joao Fernandinho are good choices, as are Azeda and Azedinha. The 18-hole Buzios Golf Club was designed by Dan Blankenship. Packed on weekends, cobbled-stoned Rua das Pedras is the hub of Buzios’s nightlife, which starts late and ends at sunrise. The Buzios beat is at its best at Patio Havana, where top Brazilian musicians pop in regularly for jazz, samba, salsa and bossa nova. Italian-inspired Satyricon has long been a favorite for superb seafood, while Sawasdee may be Brazil’s best Thai restaurant, and Bananaland offers an astounding menu of self-serve street food dishes. But for the newest dining option, take a 15-minute taxi ride to Manguinhos beach and eat at Porta da Barra, a trendy new destination restaurant overlooking mangroves and the ocean.
How to Get There
This hotel is in an excellent position with good and interesting beach below. We stayed there for 5 nights expecting 5 star treatment after an amazing 2 weeks in Argentina. We arrived at 01.00 hrs after a 13 hour journey. No welcoming drink or food, they were more interested in my signing a credit card for £500 as a deposit. Only water available at a price from the mini bar.
There are many charming members of staff but they are very badly let down by senior management. The general manager was around but never introduced herself to us.
Our suite had a lavatory with no door, black dirty bath mat, no shower gel and shampoo not renewed when finished, the safe very light and not secured.
Turn down very early to suite staff.
The Eden beach area, filthy beds , pillows and mattress covers. Old plasters and plastic spoons and bottle tops between sun beds. There were 3 staff with no guests, no one cleaning and terrible loud antisocial music blaring. Not a pleasant area to be in.
The breakfast buffet had good fruit but what I refer to as plastic ham and cheeses . The food very average, it was much better in restaurants such as Mistico or Restaurant 74.
Sadly only to be recommended for great position and many wonderful staff.
Stayed for a couple of nights at the hotel (this was the third time we stay there). It is very important to notice the significant deteioration the hotel has passed through on both quality of service and room condition. Amog the examples of the bad service, we highlight: 1) room not available by the check in time at 3hpm; 2) very high time for the food to be prepared; 3) not all employees treat customers nicely and 4) delayed room service. The room was pretty damaged, with cabinet doors stuck, very noisy flush as a result of bad hydraulic maintenance, jacuzzi not working properly, among others.
Hotel is located 10 meters from an open sir club that plays music at full volume till 6:00. The other side - also 10 meters away - is a heliport with night service. Stay elsewhere if you want to sleep.
This was a stunning hotel right on the beach. We were the only people in the hotel. A large group of Americans who were going to stay ONLY THE NEXT WEEK, for a wedding arrived & took over the place. It became noisy & the Americans used all the pool & restaurant facilities which left us with no place at the pool. The hotel staff never bothered to reserve us a table or beach chairs AS RESIDENTS !
It became incredibly noisy & other guests on TripAdvisor have complained about non-residents using the beach bar away from the hotel & making such a noise that you cannot enjoy this lovely hotel.
The hotel site showed they were full but we were the only guests. When we told them it showed they had no availability even though they were completely empty, the staff did not care & this hotel must be losing SERIOUS MONEY!
Service at RECEPTION & from 1 waiter at the restaurant was fantastic. The room cleaning ladies were also amazing. But other waiters who had nothing to do put the music on really loud & turned the restaurant into their own private party place, COMPLETELY DISREGARDING US, THE PAYING GUESTS.
It was dinner Saturday night & the noise was so bad we took our food & went & sat in another area. This did not even worry the staff who carried on using the place like their own private party place. THIS IS TOTALLY UNACCEPTABLE IN A HOTEL THAT IS ONE OF THE MOST EXPENSIVE IN BUZIOS.
The owner is not present & this is the reason why the staff do what they like.
What a pity because if they lifted the luxury level in the rooms to match the rest of the hotel & put glass doors on the bathroom to block the toilet noise (the toilets are completely open into the hotel room) & got their staff to behave like 5 star staff should then this could be an amazing hotel.
The rooms near reception or the beach side are exceptionally noisy !!!!! Rooms have no luxury & do not match the price or main area of the hotel.
We could not even sleep the staff were so noisy. The hotel is badly managed with the wrong staff. The staff here were just not 5 star quality except for Some staff were absolutely amazing but because of the mis-behaving staff destroy the quality of your stay we would not recommend this hotel or stay here again.
It was once a very nice property. Actually it rather a very negative review therefore read the part 2. The positive part were the people of the resort. Very nice welcome, smily, courtesy, very caring. However, I would welcome some training, a lot of training in restaurant, some at the reception. And English! Do you need also international tourists? I mean only the front desk and F&B Manager spoke decent english. The location is also beautiful, use Uber to get to the center - not even 10 minutes. Do some outdoor activities the front desk recommend, worth of it.
However, the resort needs an urgent refurbishment. Urgent I repeat. To us it seemed like a lack of respect for guests, nobody (or better said the owners) cares about the hotel. It looks everywhere and let's do not talk about the hidden corners, very decadent and somehow left for good. Being a very expensive one and for sure, having its glorious years behind, it's such a pity to let it die. Now let's talk about everything in details.
First, the room, somehow we were upgraded because the hotel was obviously empty (our stay was in May, good possible not the high season). The center of Buzious was very crowded and full of touristy though! The room was very dark, the balcony area covered by plants, all the day long actually all the night long. The cleanliness, you cannot do much, it's so old that the staff somehow gave up the maintenance. So, rug in front of shower dirty, the floor kind of sticky, again a beautiful parquet needs renovation etc.
I can go on for ages like that. The area closed to the beach, all the lounge furniture needs maintenance, mattresses open ...old...not clean.. What surprise me most of all, at the end of the day, it's still a member of designhotels.com. I would urgently recommend to recheck this property. It damages the reputation of the whole organisation. Next time I'll check twice before I book one hotel of design hotels!