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“Gorgeous hotel, weird service”
Review of Plaza Barra First

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Plaza Barra First
Ranked #130 of 286 Hotels in Rio de Janeiro
Reviewed May 4, 2014 via mobile

Pros:
The hotel itself is honestly the nicest hotel I have EVER stayed at in Brazil. It was incredibly Americanized; possibly not a coincidence given its location on Avenue of the Americas. The hotel is spotless, new and part of an upscale condominium complex featuring gorgeous views of the beach, rainforest and mountains from each room's balcony. There are beautiful pools for each hotel and condo, an absolutely fantastic breakfast provided and great housekeeping staff. The shower is clean and rooms are large. There's great wifi and the toilets don't clog (a problem in many SA hotels). The floors are hardwood and there's a mini fridge. There's a shuttle to the beach. Location is great--you're safe from the crime and grime of downtown rio but still minutes from the tourist attractions you want.

Cons:
The shower head had awful water pressure and there were no coin laundry facilities. Room service was awful and expensive. They had few (if any) English speaking front desk people, which made organizing trips difficult.

Stayed: May 2014, traveled on business
3  Thank LynnJD
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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22 - 28 of 561 reviews

Reviewed February 19, 2014

Good hotel, a bit remote from everything; but decent service and friendly staff.
Nice rooms too, very clean.

However, I was disappointed by the fact that I could not get ANY international news channel, not BBC, CNN NBC or you name them.
For an international business hotel, that was very disappointing.
Get rid of the 55 marginal Brazilian channels......and offer us a good balanced package; which would appeal to any traveller........

The Olympic wintergames were on while I stayed here.......you could have fooled me; not 1 channel covered it!

  • Stayed: February 2014, traveled on business
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2  Thank JuRut
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 30, 2013

The location wasn't very good. This was very apparent when our taxi driving got lost. I also had very pool wifi signal in my room, which was a huge bummer. The main road was also very noisy at night.

That being said, the free breakfast was good and the room was nice enough. The fitness center was decent, but the pool left a lot to be desired. Next time, I will probably stay at the Sheraton in Barra.

Room Tip: The lower the floor, the better the wifi signal.
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  • Stayed: December 2013, traveled on business
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1  Thank jbui1018
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 14, 2013

I spend two separate business trips in this hotel. The location is great and very safe. There is as large mall walking distance from the hotel. The room service food selection is limited and not that tasty. I had the burger which was sub par, and also the steak. The steak was a bit dry with a bland flavor. The gym is not a typical hotel gym. It is actually across from the hotel and is a community gym that has been very busy every time I had gone for a work out. The meeting rooms were by far the best part of the hotel. Great equipment and service. Great for a business hotel but as a vacation spot, not so much.

  • Stayed: July 2013, traveled on business
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1  Thank The_Exec_Backpacker
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 3, 2013

Located in a modern area of Barra, it is on a very well-maintained and quiet street and enjoys an adjacent clubhouse comprising a gym and a 'wave' pool with a gentle current.

I stayed there on a weekend during low season but the hotel still had many business guests and a few holiday goers. The hotel's restaurant is simple and offers a good choice of items for breakfast.

The staff at Front Reception were very professional at the cost of friendliness and the hotel lacked a 'warmth' because of this. In addition, they didn't all speak English. They had made a mistake with my reservation, despite having emailed them before to rectify it and having had a native Brazilian friend of mine (who lived only 2 buildings away) call them to confirm my booking. Although they assured him that it was taken care of rendering them very efficient, when I turned up to check in, I was told I did not have a reservation. Fortunately, as it was low-season, they had availability.

The room was a very good size with a comfortable King size bed. The air-condition was great for the heat. I enjoyed beautiful views of the area from my balcony. WIFI was free but only seemed to work on one side of the room. There was a dock with speaker for an iPod iTouch/iPod Nano (older generation).

All in all, I had a pleasant experience. Promenade Barra First is a good choice for a clean, basic and modern hotel in the area of Barra. It is far from all the main attractions of what you would expect to see in Rio de Janeiro. It is definitely a more 'upmarket' area. I would stay there again.

Room Tip: Try to get the rooms higher up. 11th floor was good with some nice views.
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  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled solo
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Thank preciousthin9s
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 22, 2013

Promenade Barra First is located in a modern nice area at the end of Barra da Tijuca. There is a fancy mall 10 minutes walking from the Hotel, a small grocery store and few restaurants around, but that’s all if you have no car. Breakfast is really good; the rooms are big, comfortable and clean. If you like Barra da Tijuca this is a good option, however if you are new in Rio de Janeiro you should know there are two distinguish areas with different life styles. West zone is where most of new buildings are located; some people say it is the Brazilian Miami. There are plenty malls, restaurants and few clubs and also beautiful beaches. On the other side is south zone which is more Rio de Janeiro. There are a lot of bars, more people walking around and it is where most of touristic attractions are located. Promenade Barra First is far from the famous Rio de Janeiro style of life as is everything in that location.

  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled on business
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3  Thank crsbrz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 24, 2013

Stayed overnight in Mid-March. Found a very decent hotel. Clean room, well equiped with modern TV set, roomy wardrobe and king size bed. Bathroom needed some painting, but is clear (thought that the window was too large), and had all necessary soaps, combs and shampoo. Fare was below average due to my company´s corporate rate. Restaurant is quite simple, no luxury at all, but presented typical Brazilian dishes for dinner, including grilled beef, chicken, cassava flour, rice and black beans. Breakfast had a good assortment of breads,juices, fruits, and one type of cheese, ham and scrambled eggs. Conclusion: Recommended for a business trip. I did not have time to take a walk in the pool or other facilities.

Room Tip: Stayed in a room in the west corner facing America Avenue. Some city workers were using annoying law...
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  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled on business
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Thank SilvioT
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Plaza Barra First

Address: Avenida das Americas 7897 | Barra da Tijuca, Rio de Janeiro, State of Rio de Janeiro 22793-081, Brazil (Formerly Promenade Barra First)
Location: Brazil > State of Rio de Janeiro > Rio de Janeiro
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#34 Business Hotel in Rio de Janeiro
#35 Romantic Hotel in Rio de Janeiro
#55 Luxury Hotel in Rio de Janeiro
Price Range: $58 - $130 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Plaza Barra First 4*
Number of rooms: 218
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located in the Barra da Tijuca district, the 4-star Plaza Barra First welcomes you to spend peaceful and joyful moments in its beautiful swimming pool surrounded by grounds. In addition to the pool, sauna, gym and other facilities of the hotel, you can enjoy the beach walking only 10 minutes from there. The hotel is within walking distance of other natural attractions as well, such as the Bosque da Barra Natural Park, the Marapendi Ecological Park, the Marapendi Lake and the Jacarepaguá Lake. Hotel Chain: Promenade. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Promenade Barra First Hotel Rio De Janeiro
Promenade Barra 1st
Plaza Barra First Rio De Janeiro, Brazil

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