The Best Hotels to Book in Petrópolis, Brazil

Le Siramat offers a tranquil escape from the bustle of the city
Le Siramat offers a tranquil escape from the bustle of the city | © Le Siramat / Expedia
Photo of Alex Robinson
3 December 2021

In the cool, rainforest-swathed hills above Rio is Petrópolis, the 19th-century summer retreat for Brazil’s last emperor Dom Pedro II. The city is named in his honor, with broad streets and squares designed by German architect Julius Friedrich Koeler. Many are dotted with palaces and stately mansions and are built in a faux-Rhineland or Bavarian style. The surrounding hills are perfect for walks and wildlife-watching. There are numerous hotels in Petrópolis, close to the city’s museums, churches and mausoleums. We pick the best here – all bookable via Culture Trip.

Le Siramat, for spectacular sunsets

Stylish interior of a lounge at Le Siramat with large windows and leather sofa
© Le Siramat / Expedia

A hotel in Petrópolis with fabulous mountain and rainforest views? It’s hard to beat Le Siramat, with its pool, al fresco dining deck and minimalist wood-and-tile rooms (with floor-to-ceiling glass and jacuzzi-baths-for-two with a view). They perch on a steep garden hill, looking longingly over the sculpted boulder-mountains and rainforests of the Serra dos Órgãos National Park. The air buzzes with hummingbirds and trails lead to the spectacular sunset-over-the-mountains viewpoint on adjacent Morro de Águas Lindas hill. The museums, palaces and restaurants of Petrópolis town are a 20km (12mi) drive away from your base – don’t miss them.

Superb cooking at Locanda della Mimosa

Push room with jacuzzi tub and period furniture at Locanda della Mimosa
© Locanda della Mimosa / Expedia

In lush, forest-covered hills just outside town is this arty little six-bedroom pousada with pool – one of the celebrated boutique hotels in Petrópolis. Premium suites are pretty, in creams and honey-browns, with jacuzzi tubs for two, solid-wood wardrobes and beds covered with bright, folksy comforters. Standards are smaller and simpler, as you’d expect. What really draws the guests is the excellent restaurant: come for Italian-Brazilian cooking with a focus on game, by acclaimed chef Gérard Granja.

Solar do Imperio, for rest and relaxation

Bedroom with wood floors and leather headboard at Solar do Imperio
© Solar do Imperio / Expedia

Need a tranquil boutique hotel, right in the heart of downtown Petrópolis? Check in at this luxurious converted 19th-century neoclassical mansion set in extensive formal gardens. Suites are lovely, in polished woods and creams, with heavy antique furniture, Persian carpets and ottomans. The Palácio Rio Negro – summer retreat of Brazilian presidents – is right across the road, and the Imperial Palace is a few minutes’ walk away. The hotel has two pools: one outdoors and one heated indoor pool next to the spa, saunas and steam room. That’s right – you come here to relax.

Walking country at Tucano do Cuiabá

Lush gardens and outdoor pool at Tucano do Cuiabá
© Tucano do Cuiabá / Expedia

It may be a half-hour drive downtown, but no hotel in Petrópolis can boast a location more idyllic than Tucano. The mountains of Serra dos Órgãos National Park, ribboned with waterfalls, are on the doorstep – go hiking to viewpoints over rugged ridges to the glistening Atlantic. Rooms with wall-high glass windows overlook a garden fluttering with hummingbirds, visited by monkeys. Interiors in lush wood and shades of cream are lent pops of color by abstract art. Feeling a little chilly? Log fires warm you when temperatures drop below 15C (59F).

Ninho da Arara, for luxuriant gardens

Outdoor terrace at Ninho da Arara with gardens and colonial style architecture
© Ninho da Arara / Expedia

Despite the name, macaws no longer inhabit the forests near Petrópolis, but toucans regularly visit the lush gardens of this bucolic hotel set in rolling countryside a 20-minute drive from town. Rooms resplendent in tones of cream and light green have polished hardwood floors and classic chintzy comforters. Superior doubles have garden and swimming pool views – through large picture windows and French doors. Hearty breakfasts, which are included, are served on white linen, in a farmhouse-style dining room with a roaring fire in the grate.

Child’s play at Castelo de Itaipava

Exterior of Castelo de Itaipava with palms and lawns
© Castelo de Itaipava / Expedia

Children love this faux-Bavarian castle, right off the Rio-Petrópolis state highway 35 km (22mi) north of town. The large garden playground has a Ferris wheel, slides and climbing areas; there’s a wealth of organized activities for kids, while adults get to relax by the pool or in one of the myriad jacuzzi baths. Rooms (laminate floors, taupe tiles) are lent faux-regal grandeur by blue walls, gold curtains, chandeliers and sconces. Restaurants and nightlife are a 20-minute drive away.

Amoedo, for wildlife-watching

Outdoor pool at Amoedo on a sunny day with gardens and blue skies
© Amoedo / Expedia

Rooms in the Amoedo are unfussy concrete cubes of beige floor tiles and cream shades. Facilities include a small pool and play area for kids and a tiny gym. Best of all, this leafy hotel stands in woodland gardens vibrant with wildlife. Toucans nest in the trees, tiny marmosets visit early in the morning; and the wild Serra dos Órgãos National Park, with excellent hiking and myriad waterfalls, is a 10-minute drive away. So is downtown Petrópolis, with its varied restaurants and nightlife.

Rustic R&R at Tankamana

Terrace outside room at Tankamana with jungle views
© Tankamana / Expedia

Hotels around these parts don’t get more heart-of-nature than this place, at the end of a long dirt road, surrounded by cloud forest in the extensive and wild Teresópolis Mountains Municipal Park an hour north of Petrópolis. The wildlife is spectacular – international birdwatchers visit to see rare tanagers and trogons, and the hotel runs guided walks and photography excursions. Cabin rooms are rustic-chic – in unmanicured wood and thatch, with hot tubs and balcony views. Restaurant food is mostly organic and grown in the hotel garden. You won’t go hungry.

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