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Sheraton Rio Hotel & Resort, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, 2007 onward [Master Thread]

Sheraton Rio Hotel & Resort, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, 2007 onward [Master Thread]

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Old Mar 14, 16, 9:14 pm
  #211  
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Programs: AA Gold, SPG Plat
Posts: 35
Is the PLT Concierge from a few years ago still working here (unfortunately forgot his name, but would remember if prompted)? One of the best Starwood / Hotel folks I've ever dealt with.
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Old Apr 26, 16, 12:03 pm
  #212  
 
Join Date: Sep 2015
Location: Zurich
Posts: 509
Just came back from a wonderful three night stay here. Travel Buddy is Platinum and booked a classic room on points; upgraded to a club room with full ocean view (stunning, not the largest but perfectly ok) . I got to take a look at the duplex suites too on the lower floor - I prefer to be higher, but nicely done.

The little stretch of beach in front of the hotel is lovely but as noted, the waves can be fierce. The day we arrived was full moon, and the waves were so strong that the coastal cycleway just outside the hotel on the Barra side collapsed... Take care.

Club lounge is small but classily furnished. Happy Hour from 6 to 8pm is very well done with a charismatic barman serving free wine and Caipirinhas, atmosphere is a fun and friendly mix of families, airline staff and business people. Breakfast at L'Etoile (included) had a decent if small selection of fruits, yoghurt, pastries and cooked-to-order hot food - only the sausages disappointed (viennas, not English bangers ).

Very impressed by Rio itself; really seems to have been cleaned up since the World Cup. We never felt unsafe except one night when we took a wrong turn into a deserted underpass. Though limited English spoken, everyone we met was friendly, and I was surprised at the honesty of taxi drivers. The only bad experience we had was being well overcharged for a Radiotaxi from the coach terminal to the hotel - but this seems to have been a genuine mistake, as in retrospect we discovered that the price had been calculated based on going to the old Sheraton Barra.

Only one pool was open as the main was under construction. Quite noisy but we learned to drown it out; nothing carried to the upper rooms.

Dinner at Italian, Bene, was surprisingly good (coming from two Europeans) and not too badly priced though service was very slow.

Saturday night sees a party at the outdoor Carioca room - getting a taxi at 11pm is therefore impossible, but the hotel car service will send you on your way for only a little more.
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Old Apr 26, 16, 1:12 pm
  #213  
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Texarkana TX
Programs: Hy Dia,Choice Dia,MR Plt,PCR Plt,HH Gd, SPG Gd,Carlson Sil, CO Plt, UA Prem Exec, DL FO, Hertz #1GD
Posts: 1,018
Stayed 5 nights on points in the fall.
Originally wanted to stay at Copacabana but sold out my dates.
Lets call it a happy accident.
Loved the hotel. 1st night got a crappy room on lower floor with a tiny balcony facing construction of new pool, asked to be moved and I was pleasantly surprised to be moved to one of the lower level rooms not in the tower with the large balconies.

What I liked most is that the hotel is right on the beach not across the street.
Beach was far less crowded than others and probably nicer. Locals came out mostly on the weekend.

Uber got me to Copa/Ipa in a couple minutes for a few bucks.

taxis may of actually been cheaper as Uber was often 2x, 3x fares but I just started using uber and was really excited about it.
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Old May 1, 16, 7:21 pm
  #214  
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 6
When redeeming an award night at this property, do they charge any taxes/fees?
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Old Jan 18, 17, 1:43 pm
  #215  
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: BRU-ZRH
Programs: LX HON, BA Gold, SPG Plat100
Posts: 637
Anybody stayed here during NY eve? I wonder what the chances are of Plat upgrade to Club room as I presume it will be fully booked?
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Old Jan 19, 17, 2:47 pm
  #216  
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Programs: UAL, AA, HILTON, MARRIOTT, SPG
Posts: 34
Thumbs down

Originally Posted by The Wolf View Post
Anybody stayed here during NY eve? I wonder what the chances are of Plat upgrade to Club room as I presume it will be fully booked?
This hotel still sucks. Chances of getting an upgrade are very slim - they want to up sell you on it. Their definition of upgrade is higher floor - not corner room or suite. Oh and they have a family suite that is super small and sucks. I have recent pix from my stay in December Ill post shortly.
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Old Jan 19, 17, 3:02 pm
  #217  
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: BRU-ZRH
Programs: LX HON, BA Gold, SPG Plat100
Posts: 637
Originally Posted by flavatravel View Post
This hotel still sucks. Chances of getting an upgrade are very slim - they want to up sell you on it. Their definition of upgrade is higher floor - not corner room or suite. Oh and they have a family suite that is super small and sucks. I have recent pix from my stay in December Ill post shortly.
I stayed there in December as well but I loved it, real-good value for money. Excellent club floor, good breakfast, great caipirinha's in club lounge. No complaints to be honest!
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Old Jan 20, 17, 3:59 am
  #218  
 
Join Date: May 2011
Programs: SPG Plat/LTP, LH FTL
Posts: 138
Originally Posted by The Wolf View Post
Excellent club floor, good breakfast, great caipirinha's in club lounge. No complaints to be honest!
Definitely agree. Stayed there in Nov. and was very pleased. Club lounge staff and their freshly mixed caipirinha's are just great. Same goes for the very friendly and helpful concierge staff (outside the club lounge). Pool area is in excellent condition and we loved the small beach in front of the hotel.

Of course subjective, but we had no safety concerns outside the hotel (e.g. walking to Leblon) whatsoever.

Would be happy to return to this property very soon.
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Old Feb 6, 17, 11:14 am
  #219  
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: New York, NY
Programs: BA Gold, SPG Lifetime Plat, Marriott Plt, HH Diamond, Hyatt Diamond, Carlson Gold, A3*G, UA*S, DLPlt
Posts: 1,143
Nice piece about Rio that features the Sheraton too...

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/travel/ar...o-Janeiro.html
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Old Jun 24, 17, 5:02 pm
  #220  
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: SAN
Programs: DL Silver (MM), Marriott LT Plat, SPG Plat, AA CK, Avis Chairmans
Posts: 1,343
Just completing a 3 night stay here. Plat and upgraded to a club floor room with a spectacular view and huge room (suite?). Staff has been very good, sufficient english, and very clean. I did not research the location, and didn't know it was far away from any 'action' (bars, clubs, food, shopping, etc.). But to be fair, Uber is cheap so $3 US will get you to the heart of the action.

June is the low, low season, so very slow around here and at the beaches. Could almost call it nearly dead.

I did eat several meals here, unfortunately. My dinners were quite disappointing in terms of food quality and taste. Very "bleh" and things I would not order again. Not even in the same universe as good locally owned Brazilian restaurants. So do breakfast here, but skip for lunch and dinner. Breakfast was quite tasty with cook to order eggs.

If I ever came back to Rio, I'd look at something more central like the JW. I did appreciate some English TV channels such as CNN international.

Oh, and I did have one problem here. The first evening the internet was terribly slow, would drop, and basically useless on both of my laptops and iphone. I called guest services and they said there was no problem, but would call me back. They never called back. The following day I had the same problem. They sent an IT guy, and he reset the local wifi router. That did the trick and it's been fine since. Never had a problem like this before at Starwood.
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Old Jan 15, 18, 3:10 pm
  #221  
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Rio de Janeiro
Programs: BA Silver (OW Sapphire), SPG/MR LTPP, HH Diamond, LeClubAccor Gold, UA Silver, Azul Safira
Posts: 1,369
Great Staycation

Just completed a 1 night stay here as a staycation, and since this was my first stay since their extensive renovation a couple of years ago, I wanted to report on a great stay. I was very impressed, to the point that if you’re planning on enjoying the a holiday, and can’t quite afford the Copacabana Palace, the Fasano or the Emiliano, I believe this is the next best pick in Rio.


LOCATION

While there’s nothing immediately within walking distance, you can easily (and safely) walk down to Leblon during the day, or take a taxi or Uber for less than BRL 10. On the flipside, the view of Ipanema and Leblon is second to none. Even though the hotel is adjacent to the Vidigal slum, the risk to hotel guests is not significant and getting to and from the hotel by car presents no bigger risk than moving around anywhere in Rio.


FACILITIES

Since the idea was to enjoy the pools as much as possible, I arrived at the hotel around 9am already in beach gear and dropped my light luggage at the bell desk and left my cell phone number with FD to get notified when room was ready. I was given a towel pass (normally you just need to give room number and name at the entrance to pool area to get towels). My room was eventually ready around 11am. The lobby has been nicely remodeled and feels spacious and modern. The quirky thing is that the lobby is located at street level on the 6th floor, but since the building is on the side of a hill, the pool area is at the bottom, on floor 0. I often ended up at the pool level when looking for the lobby.

The pool area has been extensively redone, to a high standard. There are 4 pools in total (main pool, secondary pool, kiddies pool, and spa pool). Plenty of sun loungers around, including some beds. The best thing is that there’s no nonsense regarding minimum spend to get the most prime seats: it’s first come first serve, and guests here don’t tend to be hoggers, freeing seats when going for meals, etc so there’s relatively high turnover. The pool area feels like a true resort, and despite lots of children, this doesn’t feel like it’s overrun with screaming children, quite the contrary. Speaking of children, there is a great kid’s club (Sheratoons) with game rooms for all ages, and supervised activities all free of charge.

The hotel is also facing directly Vidigal beach, which is mainly used by hotel guests and residents of the Vidigal slum. Unfortunately, despite being very pretty, the beach is improper for swimming as untreated sewage from the slum finds its way to the sea here. To make matters worse, there is currently a hepatitis A outbreak in Vidigal so as far as I was concerned, the beach was off limits to me (but plenty of guests were enjoying it – ignorance is bliss).


ROOMS

They were refurbished, and much of the carpets were thankfully removed. However, the look is not as modern as that of other recently refurbished “Sheraton Grand” properties (London, Santiago, Hiroshima, to name some I have visited). All rooms have some sort of sea view, and a Juliette balcony although ideally you want to be on a high floor facing the pool (and thus, Leblon and Ipanema). I was upgraded to a Junior Suite, which faced the hill (XX06) and the room was very spacious, including a kitchenette with microwave, small fridge and sink (also an ice machine next door). The room also featured a walk in closet/dressing area but I found the bathroom to be comparatively cramped, especially the with a curtain.


F&B

I was really impressed with the quality of food outlets, although prices are above average for Rio. The pool bar seemed to be the poorest value of all, with a burger around R$ 55 (U$ 18), beers at R$ 15 (U$ 5) and caipirinhas at R$ 30 (U$ 9). Although these prices don’t look very expensive from a US point of view, they are around twice the price of local restaurants with comparable quality. On the plus side, service at the pool is good, and waiters are always present but in no way pressure you to keep consuming. They do have a gelato cart which is quite popular and a good idea, as was a skewer station selling steak or shrimp skewers for R$ 20, or hot dogs for the same price.

At the pool area there’s also Casarão, which is a buffet style restaurant, which on Saturdays serves a typical Brazilian feijoada for R$99 (U$33) which is on the expensive side, but is all you can eat and includes dessert so I guess it’s worthwhile if you’re very hungry. Finally, there’s also Casa da Cachaça, which is good for lighter bites and pizzas in the evening.

Adjacent to the pool area, there’s Bene, an Italian that’s open for dinner and an (expensive) Sunday brunch for R$ 210 (U$ 65) including soft drinks or R$ 260 / U$ 80 including beer, wine and sparkling wine. Dry Martini is a cocktail bar next door, with cocktails created by Spanish mixologist Javier de las Muelas. The drinks are very good (I recommend the Espresso Martini and the Wasabi Martini). The best thing about Dry Martini is the 2-for-1 Happy Hour, Mon-Sat 7-8:30PM.

Finally, the hotel also has a high-end restaurant on the 26th floor: chef Jean Paul Bondoux’s L’Etoile serving high end French cuisine. Once again, prices are high by local standards, especially the tasting menu. There is however a set menu for R$ 200 which is good value.


PLAT TREATMENT

This is where the hotel really shines! As mentioned earlier, I was upgraded to a Junior Suite (the hotel was at very high occupancy due to summer holidays). Despite this being a resort, I was proactively offered a 4pm checkout. The lounge experience here is amazing: Club Lounge is on the 26th floor with an amazing view, and open 24h with soft drinks and a Nespresso machine. Club Lounge breakfast is served at L’Etoile restaurant and is actually better than the regular buffet (served at Bene, also available to Plats, in addition to 500 pts). It includes made to order items, as well as items like smoked salmon and sparkling wine.

Happy Hour at the lounge is 6-8pm and includes a wide variety of foods (mini pizzas, omelettes, grilled vegetables, sandwiches) and drinks like beer, wine, a very good local sparkling wine and made to order caipirinhas (vodka or cachaça). The attendants were continually hovering around topping up our glasses, almost insistently so! This is a huge change from other lounges where attendants drag their feet.


RESORT FEE

The one annoying thing here is that on top of a 10% “service charge”, they’ve recently implemented a U$16 per night resort fee. However, they remove that for Plats without questioning (it includes parking, 2 soft drinks or beer, and some spa discounts).

TAKEAWAYS

I booked a BRG for U$105 which is a great rate during high season, and was cheaper than their day use rate. Considering I got 2 full days at the pool and happy hour plus an amazing breakfast, this was a steal, and I will be doing more of these one nighters throughout the year!
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Old Jan 15, 18, 6:24 pm
  #222  
 
Join Date: May 1998
Location: australia
Posts: 4,711
Thanks RafKa for the indepth report - its been too long since my last visit to the Sheraton Rio in its pre-renovation days
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Old Jan 26, 18, 10:10 am
  #223  
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: 60km from AMS
Programs: CO/UA 1K, Marriott/SPG Au, Hilton Ag, IHG Pt
Posts: 491
5 night redemption stay and still a hit & miss

Booked a 5 night redemption stay and got a pro-active reachout from the Club Receptionist via e-mail, including urging me to check in on the 26th floor. Upon arrival (past 2AM as indicated) no one to be seen there, regular check-in desk informed me that no Club access was offered (then why does the Club reach out !?). Next interaction with the Club desk was a day prior to check-out, if I needed transportation (no, arranged for myself).

Location is wonderful, renovated pool is very nice, got a room overlooking the ocean in the older non-tower building.

Beware of the on-premise ATM, it will add a BRL surcharge (OK, understandable) and print a receipt in BRL. However the charge to my creditcard was in USD, even more fun to get a 20% higher BRL/USD rate plus the USD/EUR on top of it.

Room-Service is definitely a miss, takes very long (1 hour 15 minutes was the longest), cook things Medium Well when requested as Medium Rare, deliver the wrong things (Filet Mignon with sauce instead of the Sirloin Grill etc). House keeping is another interesting one, if you leave food clearly marked to not be taken (fruit platter) or bring your own special glasses, they will disappear, even from the minibar-fridge.

Check-out required me to go over the check with a fine-toothed comb, they charged the same Room-Service check 5 times to my room. The agent was helpful in going over that all, but also insisted on splitting the bill, once the authorized amount from check-in and then the rest.

All-in-all, if you need a really relaxing holiday, this property is not be the best place squarely at odds with what a "Sheraton Grand" experience should be. Which given the location and for example the excellent pool staff is a grand shame.

Last edited by jupper; Jan 26, 18 at 10:24 am Reason: Typo
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Old May 2, 18, 10:14 am
  #224  
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Austin, TX
Programs: AA, SPG
Posts: 75
Stayed at the Sheraton Rio in March and had a great stay but afterwards I noticed my credit card was charged a lot more than I anticipated. I contacted the hotel for a copy my folio, and sure enough there was around $100 of extra charges for food and beverages (I did not eat at the hotel). I asked the hotel for receipts. They emailed me back all the receipts I was expecting, plus an extra one with someone else's name, signature and room number. I found it strange they would not have noticed such an obvious mistake, especially since I was already complaining that I felt overcharged. So I pointed it out and asked for a refund. That was a month ago. I've emailed several times asking for the status of the refund. The last correspondence I received from them was 9 days ago stating that "the request for the reimbursement of the undue amount has already been made by our Financial Department." Anyone know what I should do next if I do not get a response from them?
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Old May 2, 18, 2:12 pm
  #225  
 
Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: GRU
Programs: *A Gold, OW Sapphire, SPG Gold, HH Diamond, Accor Plat
Posts: 3,342
Originally Posted by phatty View Post
Stayed at the Sheraton Rio in March and had a great stay but afterwards I noticed my credit card was charged a lot more than I anticipated. I contacted the hotel for a copy my folio, and sure enough there was around $100 of extra charges for food and beverages (I did not eat at the hotel). I asked the hotel for receipts. They emailed me back all the receipts I was expecting, plus an extra one with someone else's name, signature and room number. I found it strange they would not have noticed such an obvious mistake, especially since I was already complaining that I felt overcharged. So I pointed it out and asked for a refund. That was a month ago. I've emailed several times asking for the status of the refund. The last correspondence I received from them was 9 days ago stating that "the request for the reimbursement of the undue amount has already been made by our Financial Department." Anyone know what I should do next if I do not get a response from them?
Prior to 60 days of expense, challenge the charge with your credit card. After 60 days you are at the sole mercy of the hotel, if/when they take care of the issue.
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