A Day of Culture
A trip through the cinemas, theaters and museums of São Paulo reveals the best of the Brazilian arts scene
© fernando moares/Stay another Day - SPTuris. Benjamin Abrahão Mundo dos Pães: an endless variety of baked goods, both sweet and savory.
Morning Before starting your day of culture, have breakfast at Benjamin Abrahão Mundo dos Pães (R. Maranhão, 220, tel. 3258-1855). It’ll be tough to choose between the endless variety of baked goods, both sweet and savory, made daily in this Higienópolis bakery. From there, head to the Museu de Arte Brasileira (R. Alagoas, 903, tel. 3662-7200).
Located within the Fundação Armando Álvares Penteado, or Faap for short, the museum holds 2,500 works of Brazilian and foreign artists, including Tarsila do Amaral and Brecheret.
On Tuesdays and Fridays, there’s a street fair near the Pacaembu stadium, which is close to Faap. Don’t miss the pastel (fried turnover) from the stand owned by Maria, elected best of the city in a contest put on by City Hall in 2009. From there, just get to the Museu do Futebol, located inside the stadium (Pça. Charles Miller, unnumbered, tel. 3663-3848).
The museum uses audiovisual and interactive exhibits to recount the history of Brazilian soccer. A good example: screens that face each other, showing the songs and choreographed moves of fans and thus reproducing the passion-filled battles that happen when rivals take each other on. Afterwards, head to Jardins for an unforgettable lunch at D.O.M. (R. Barão de Capanema, 549, tel. 3088-0761). The creations of ballyhooed chef Alex Atala, who uses Brazilian ingredients with contemporary cooking techniques, has landed D.O.M. the honor of being the only Brazilian eatery among the 50 best restaurants of the world, according to Restaurant Magazine.
© jair Magri. Guide: Stay another Day - SPTuris. Livraria Cultura: a large bookstore filled with CDs, DVDs, books and magazines.
You can’t leave Avenida Paulista out of a day of art. Its 2.8 pedestrian-friendly kilometers have countless cultural options. To start with, make a stop at the Conjunto Nacional (Av. Paulista, 2 073), the building where you’ll find the gallery space called Caixa Cultural (tel. 3321-4400), and the gigantic Livraria Cultura (tel. 3170-4033), a bookstore carrying almost three million titles.
Just a few blocks away is the Museu de Arte de São Paulo – Masp (Av. Paulista, 1578, tel. 3251-5644), the building-on-stilts designed by Lina Bo Bardi. Its absent first story is the biggest free span in Latin America. It holds works by Vincent van Gogh, Cândido Portinari and Pierre-Auguste Renoir, among others: set aside at least two hours for your visit. If there’s still time, check out the good exhibitions put together by Itaú Cultural (Av. Paulista, 149, tel. 2168-1777) or admire the architecture of the Casa das Rosas (Av. Paulista, 37, tel. 3258-6986), housed in one of the few mansions still remaining from the era of the coffee barons.
Anyone who appreciates the dramatic arts and understands a bit of Portuguese can find a good play at either the Ruth Escobar theater
(R. dos Ingleses, 209, tel. 3289-2358) or the Abril theater
(Av. Brigadeiro Luís Antônio, 411, tel. 2846-6060). If you prefer, look up what’s on tap at the Reserva Cultural cinema
(Av. Paulista, 900, tel. 3287-3529).
A good choice for dinner is Japanese food, one of São Paulo’s passions. One of the best spots is Jun Sakamoto
(R. Lisboa, 55, tel. 3088-6019), where the chef of the same name prepares original sushis and sashimis. Before you go back to the hotel, check what’s going on at Studio SP
(R. Augusta, 591, tel. 3129-7040). The nightclub virtually always has shows by excellent Brazilian or foreign artists, not to mention good DJs.