And so it begins… The first signs of spring are all that is needed to ignite dreams of long summers and endless email exchanges about the perfect summer break.
But do you really want to spend hours battling through Heathrow with the Costa del Sol mafia on a sweltering summer day when you could be lounging over Pimms at the bottom of the garden? The intelligent ones among us have cottoned on that it is all about the winter sun, especially if this year’s bone freezing temperatures were anything to go by.
Summer fervour has inspired Dehouche to pick our favourite South American beach haunts; each of them reason enough to avoid the summer crowds and let us plan your winter fun in the sun. We promise you… these are the sort of places that dreams are made of.
Taiko, Florianopolis – Brazil
Brazilian men utter the words ‘Jurere International’ with an almost sacred reverence, with particular emphasis on the International as the ultimate affirmation of its indisputable chic credentials. The thin stretch of beach in the north of Florianopolis’s Santa Catarina island, lined with Miami beach style mansions, is legendary for its lavish champagne-fuelled beach parties, frequented by Brazil’s millionaire playboys and girls that bear more than a passing resemblance to Gisele. Unfortunately with this clientele comes a hefty price tag and the tables cost you R$1000 to even look at… and don’t even think about ordering anything other than champagne or premium vodka. Taiko is our pick for the ultimate spot for afternoon people watching, pec flaunting and some serious cash flashing.
Rocka, Buzios – Brazil
Located in Buzios, the St Tropez of Latin America, Rocka is the epitome of sophisticated, bare-foot chic, with exceptional service and fresh produce to match. Open just over a year, Rocka is the most recent project of Brazilian impresario Santiago Bebbiano who, having learnt the art of hospitality growing up in Casas Brancas, picked up a few tricks while living in Miami to create the definition of the perfect beach lounge. Set on a beautifully rugged horseshoe bay with a rhythmic pattern of waves that draw the local surfers, large leather white lounges shade guests sipping on Veuve Clicquot or Caipirinhas and a sophisticated menu of seafood that changes according to the daily catch, prepared under the expert eye of business partner and top chef Argentinean Gustavo Rinkevich. Over the summer season, dinners go on till late and the restaurant deck transforms into a dance floor for impromptu parties and moonlight dancing. On a par with the world’s top beach lounges, Rocka is the perfect balance between the best of Ibiza and the Cote’d’Azure, yet with a flair and soul only to be found in Brazil. This is one of those places you pray the rest of the world will never discover.
La Huella, Jose Ignacio – Uruguay
With the first wafts of high season, Argentina and Brazil’s trendsetters arrive in Jose Ignacio to shake up their more laid back cousins and for one month of the year, you can’t move without bumping into an off duty supermodel or Rolling Stone. Punta del Este holds the reputation of the Ibiza of Latin America… if Ibiza was only International DJs at private parties, held in white mansions perfectly positioned to watch the sunrise with all the other beautiful people. Like bees to the honey, those in the know flock to hidden gem La Huella. The restaurant-cum-beach bar could not have a better setting, with rolling sand dunes stretching far along the Atlantic coast. The seafood on offer is as fresh as can be and you should not leave without trying the calamari and octopus. Reservations are a must as the cat is fast escaping from the bag, or in this case the fish from the net.
Café Del Mar, Cartagena – Colombia
The name Café Del Mar is fast becoming synonymous for combining perfect sunsets with the ultimate in chill out music topped off with a great cocktail list and the Cartagena locale certainly keeps up these high standards. Situated right in the historic city walls, the bar is a perfect blend of old Cartagena coming together with the new. All of this is set to a backdrop of the Caribbean Sea, we recommend arriving just before 5.30pm to stake out the prime position for when the sun sets over the ocean, once it’s gone down you are free to party with Cartagena’s hippest inhabitants.
El Gordo, Trancoso – Brazil
Trancoso is possibly the chicest place in Brazil; it’s where the rich and famous come to escape their rich and famous lifestyles, but that’s not to say that they don’t bring some of the glamour with them. The town square is known as the Quadrado and it is where all the action happens. The place to be seen is luxury pousada El Gordo, although not actually on the beach the view of the Atlantic more than makes up for it. The bar still possesses it’s laid back charm whilst also having enough glamour to attract the ‘it’ crowd. The time to visit is now before the big hotel giants start to claim the sands.
As well as customising your holiday down to a T, luxury travel specialists Dehouche will have you artfully lounging on all the right lounges and jumping the queues at the most exclusive parties – the bonus of having a 24 hour concierge service at your disposal. Contact Dehouche at firstname.lastname@example.org