The Brazilian dream house

If you find yourself in Brazil in an average home, an apartment, a private estate, a farmstead – whether on the ocean or in the city, in a coastal village or even in the wilds of the Amazon – you’ll still notice a similarity, the same interior design line and environment in general, as well as a special atmosphere.

Photo: Quasebart.

The Brazilian dream home

Bachelor’s dinner the Brazilian way

If you visit your Brazilian friend, don’t expect him to fix you a whole table of diverse dishes, as they do in America. In the best-case scenario, if families get together, it can be one of the family’s favorite dishes, which the hostess cooks best and would be happy to serve you. In the simplest version – coffee.

Brazilians prefer to drink coffee anytime, anywhere. If you’re here for a friendly chat to discuss or share something intimate, your friend will certainly offer you this tonic. And you can spend an entire day in such a dialogue over a cup of coffee.

Coffee, as well as juice, is often prepared “by hand”: simply put a coffee pot on the stove, and when the water begins to boil, add to it one or two spoons of ground coffee. In villages they give preference to standard turks and geyser coffee makers, and when you come to visit, the hostess literally will not let it out of her hands, all the time pouring you this bitter drink.

If you go to a bachelor’s apartment to a friend with whom you have something in common, be it business or simply a liking, he will offer you what he has in the refrigerator… He’ll just take some ingredients, mix them together, fry them up, and they can come out pretty tasty. Well, for example, it could be this set: green peas, corn individual grains and standard sausages. Put it on a frying pan and fry in sunflower or olive oil with a pinch of salt and pepper. Or spicing things up, depending on your personal preference. It’s a kind of a Hawaiian-Brazilian mix!

The family meal – just like in the TV series!

In homes where there are service people – butlers, housekeepers, maids, cooks, pool cleaners, drivers – the traditions are preserved

Living room in Brazil

family meals. In most cases the whole family gathers for breakfast and dinner around an oval or rectangular table. They try to be on time to discuss vital matters, as it is difficult to find a member of the family during the day they usually eat at the office, or in a restaurant or café if they have a business meeting.

The cult of family, established since childhood, is maintained throughout life. Grandfather or father is the eldest person at the head of the table. If they are absent, their son has the right to take their place, especially if the family has its own business. And in such a home, the dining table is not just a piece of furniture, here it acts as an object of negotiation, both family and business.

In rural homes, the woman is the keeper of the hearth. In the kitchen, she’s the queen and goddess. Men, we can say, are forbidden to enter there, you can enter only in the dining room, when everything is ready and the table is set. Gathering here for dinner with the whole family is a sacred thing. In a rustic home, the kitchen is usually combined with the dining area. You won’t find fancy built-in appliances in hi-tech style here. It’s simple: an old refrigerator, a regular four-burner stove. The most important thing in the apartment – the presence of a microwave. Just like us, people in metropolitan areas cook in a hurry. And in the mansions the kitchens are literally stuffed with home appliances – all the latest “fashions”. The refrigerator is a kitchen “deity” of its own. Shaped usually like a huge closet, located in the most visible place, with many functions, the honorable of which is the preparation of cold sparkling water.

In Brazil they love to cook fish, in any seafood village they eat it almost every day. Almost every seafood dish requires baking in the oven.

Sofas and cushions are part of the soul of the home

If Brazilians want to relax from the hustle and bustle of the day, they go … – no, no, not to the bedroom, but to the hall, the living room, specially equipped for long conversations. Yes, strange as it may seem, but sofas and armchairs, sofas and banquettes standing in the middle of living rooms, which we saw in the TV series, are there even now. They also stand in the middle of the hall or on the terrace. This interior detail is present in many homes, both urban and rural, so that at any time guests or family members come to sit opposite and, looking into each other’s eyes, just talk.

In the city, the upholstered sofas are mostly white, fabric, the surface is studded with small cushions. In the countryside, especially in coastal homes, these are woven cane couches, chairs, sofas, and armchairs. On the couch can lie a woven plaid, and if there are pillows, the pillowcases on them are embroidered by the mistress of the house by hand. When building a house, Brazilians try to build fewer walls, especially if the space involves a wide area, for example, often the living room is combined with the kitchen, dining room and corridor.

Despite the advantage of white in the paneling of soft corners, the Brazilians prefer bright, saturated colors: green, yellow, lettuce. A bright orange sofa is the order of the day! And the bed is always only white.

Dreams and dreams are stored… in a drawer

Not the last place in the list of important household items is a hammock. You’ll find such a contraption in every home. More often it is woven or sewn by themselves. A kind of “hanging bed” is in almost every room, including the terrace. Almost all the time the hammock is in a disassembled state or neatly stored in a chest of drawers. On the walls of the bedrooms – obligatory hooks for hanging. The Brazilian hammock can be compared to a Spanish siesta or American bath. On such a bed Brazilians can relax for hours: to forget about problems, to seclude and dream, to remember nice moments from life, just to be alone with their thoughts. Every family member’s bedroom is in fact a separate house, where everyone is its own master and arranges this place the way it wants.

Cleaning without vacuum cleaner, overnight without air conditioner and vice versa

Everything depends on where the family lives. Inhabitants of villages and settlements near the ocean prefer to walk barefoot at home. Going out into the yard or outdoors is the same, since most of the yard is sand instead of tile. In a humble country house you won’t find a carpet or a rug, because of the tropical climate the villager prefers weaved colorful rugs, small linen mats: it doesn’t make cleaning difficult, you can easily and quickly take them outside and shake off the sand. Bedroom windows are left open at night, air conditioning gives way to a fresh sea breeze. Not everyone can afford such a device, in seaside villages it is a rarity, but in the city there are several units in the house.

Why the roofs shine?

Sometimes the roof is decorated in rustic style, with thatch and reed leaves on the surface. But in Brazil, houses with shiny roofs are more and more common. It’s hard to tell at once what it might be. It turns out they are solar collectors. According to experts, Brazil aims to increase the amount of biofuels consumed. Brazilians try to buy solar boilers. It’s not a cheap pleasure, but it lets you save on energy bills. Usually such water heaters are installed on the roofs of apartment buildings and private homes. They convert solar energy into heat and transfer it through the water pipes. Heated water from the heat exchanger enters the radiators of the heating system, and the water from the tank is used for hot water supply. You rarely see this in villages, but almost every village has its own water supply, so if you think of building a hut among the palm trees, it will still have facilities.

Welcome to the bathroom

In affluent homes, each member of the family has his own, separate bathroom in the bedroom – often combined. What’s a bathroom in a house like this?

The bathroom in Brazil

at all? This is primarily a large room where everything is arranged separately: a shower stall – more often with clear glass or fiberglass, round or any other intricately shaped bathtub, a white toilet bowl and bidet.

Over the sink must have a large mirror. The sink is often built into a wide countertop with a nightstand and lots of drawers with an arsenal of all kinds of personal care products. While in the bedroom on the dressing table is a rather modest ladies’ “set”: combs, perfume, jewelry boxes, pictures of loved ones, as well as bottles of colored sand as an element of decor. Such a glass vessel can also decorate a bedside table. Bottles with sand fillers – a hobby of Brazilians.

In the countryside, they usually make do with a single shower stall, located either in a separate room or right in the living room, for example, in the corner of the bedroom. Glass doors are usually replaced by a curtain made of a synthetic material – oilcloth or Teflon – attached to a wire frame.

The choice of tiles is also important for Brazilians, often featuring an intricate two-color or multi-colored pattern, a monogrammed pattern or a proportional pattern. The decoration in this style is inherent in both the bathroom and kitchen.

Brazilians are generally traditionalists. And if once a family has chosen a certain style, they will keep it all the time and will not agree to change anything.

From Isaura to Tropicana

The habit of watching soap operas is more likely to be retained by the adult generation. The legendary Globo television company is one of the world’s leading producers of soap operas. Brazilian novels have become an inseparable part of city life, and in the evenings they rush home in order not to miss the next episode of the acclaimed TV novel.

Yes, Brazilians love soap operas, popular science shows, but there’s no TV cult in the living room as such. The TV screen is relegated to the background, usually by the window or near the front door of the bedroom, as an afterthought. But in the rooms where the younger generation lives, they have a full-length, full-width wall.

By the way, plasma screen TVs in Brazil appeared earlier than ours. For the young people, presence is important: music videos, concerts, that’s what turns them on when you turn on the TV. In some villages there is no television at all, and rural women spend their free time doing handicrafts: knitting macramé, weaving linen on spinning wheels, weaving baskets, making beads from seashells that they collect themselves, sometimes taking the items to the beach to sell. Fishing families live on the coasts and catching fish is one of their main incomes.

Women help their husbands weave nets. In general, the villagers live their own family and domestic, personal problems and issues, not immersed in the lives of soap opera characters. Some even reject soap operas, considering them harmful. And in their free time, the provincial youth on the outskirts of El Salvador simply go out into the streets: singing and dancing, organizing street capoeira competitions, playing tam-tams, pandeira. Capoeira is a martial art first mentioned in the early 18th century.

“Young people have gone!”

Brazil by the Ocean

People of Brazil are known to be hospitable and welcoming people, friendly to tourists and visitors. Endless beaches

The atmosphere on the eastern seaboard of the ocean is conducive to making acquaintances and having long conversations.

As a friend of mine told me, students in Salvador, Bahia like to spend all their time on the beach, playing volleyball or reading. And the local bodybuilders set up gyms right on the ocean.

On a sweltering day, young people prefer to retreat to the wide terraces outside their homes, lounging by the pool and sipping on freshly squeezed juices. They make it themselves in handmade plastic juicers, but the electric ones, for some reason, are relegated to the back burner. In urban apartments and in rural areas they use citrus presses more often.

Urban youth in the evening or in the heat of the day, in addition to the pool and beach, spend their leisure time in music bars or cafes with amigos and namoradas from português, Brazil. amigos, namoradas .

When the workday is short or it’s a weekend, well-to-do young people spend hours riding their jet skis over the waves or take their jeeps to ride the kilometers-long sand dunes…

Beware of the favelas!


The Brazilians will gladly show you their country, but there are places they would like to hide from prying eyes. Most Brazilian cities and towns are surrounded by favelas, or, in Portuguese, favela slum with little infrastructure. The slums are almost never mentioned in the movies. They are situated mainly on the outskirts of towns, on the unpopulated slopes of mountains.

The inhabitants of favelas build their houses themselves from whatever material is at hand, at best from bricks, at worst from cardboard and fabrics. And often these buildings are so densely populated that they resemble matchboxes stacked one on top of the other.

These districts are characterized by a high crime rate even during the daytime, and if you accidentally cross the border of civilization, it may happen that any object of everyday use will fly at you from behind the corner, because you are a stranger in this territory.

One of the tourists who has been to such an area described his visit in the following way: when he got there, all the noise around him was silent.

The women hurried to their homes, dragging their children with them, while the men immediately turned to the stranger, squinting their eyes. A tourist who ventured into a favela is not advised to repeat his “experience”. It miraculously remained intact, capturing the local “scenery.

An acquaintance of mine used to travel around Bahia State. In a square in El Salvador, the state capital, he left his phone by the fountain. In the morning I returned to the same place: the cell phone was still there. It happens that way too, but still be on your guard if you venture into poor urban neighborhoods.

Usually people who can’t afford a house or an apartment go to the outskirts to live. The so-called “dwellings” were built without any land projects or cadastres. The inhabitants of favelas don’t pay for utilities and live by their own rules. Many guidebooks on Brazil recommend avoiding such areas.

Brazilians have highly developed eye and tactile contacts: while looking at the interlocutor and telling something with enthusiasm the speaker is bound to touch his hand or even pat on the shoulder saying “come on, join in the discussion”, just imagine what a story it is! Tropical people like active listeners: they themselves are very emotional, they always tell something in color, they gesticulate a lot, they stamp out every word.


In 1500 the colonization of Brazil began. The Portuguese brought slaves from Africa, who in turn brought their culture, religion, and traditions to the country. There are two versions of the origin of the dance with elements of acrobatics and wrestling.

According to one of the hypotheses, capoeira was formed and developed in the “quilombos” – “free settlements” – where slaves ran away. According to another version, wrestling was practiced in captivity, to the tune of national instruments, a disguise that prevented the overseers from recognizing that the slaves were training and competing in strength.

Today capoeira is more than just a dance. Almost all over the world they organize festivals and capoeira schools. To get an idea of what a capoeira is we recommend to watch the feature film “Only the Strongest” with Mac Dacascos in the leading role 1993, USA, directed by Sheldon Letitsch .

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