Humboldt Director Simon was recently on a trip to northern Brazil and was invited to a brand-new luxury hotel in Preá, just outside of Jericoacoara: Hotel Casana. Here is his report on this exclusive new offering:
Recently, I was on a whistle-stop tour of the north coast, primarily to Jericoacoara, visiting old and new hotels and catching up with our suppliers in the area. Since my last visit to the area a new airport has opened just outside Jericoacoara in the small town of Preá which is slowly but surely changing the landscape of tourism in the region and making access to this exceptionally remote part of Brazil considerably easier.
I had heard that a new hotel had just opened in Cruz so was keen to visit and arranged for my driver, Rafael, to take me for a visit on the journey back to Fortaleza. The trip from Cruz airport to the newly opened Hotel Casana took around 25 minutes, mainly on paved roads, until the final section as you enter the private land of the hotel which is along a sandy track.
The entrance to the hotel is equally unassuming, with only a small reception next to the main entrance. As you enter the actual hotel, my perception of this low-key looking property immediately changed. The entrance opens up to a sleek and spacious lounge area complete with books, a television and supremely comfy sofas. I was greeted with a delicious complimentary coconut water before beginning a tour of the property.
Adjoining the lounge area is the restaurant and the hotel kitchens. Unusually for a hotel kitchen, there is a large window looking into the cooking area so guests can see the hubbub of the chefs. I was shown into the kitchen and introduced to the amiable Chef Renato Machado who was busy preparing lunch. The kitchens, like the rest of Hotel Casana, are state-of-the-art. The chef has a background working in Michelin-star restaurants, alongside world-renowned Brazilian chefs. The menu changes daily and is based on what’s in season and the catch of the day from local fishermen. The vegetables are all grown in the hotel and so vegetarians and vegans are also easily catered for. Guests staying at the Hotel Casana have an exquisite breakfast, lunch and dinner included in their daily rate.
I visited the hotel during lunch service and the chef invited me to sample what was cooking. All meals at Hotel Casana are included and the food is really superb. I enjoyed a high-class three course meal featuring two local fish dishes followed by a healthy take on a sweet Brazilian classic: brigadeiros with a smooth coconut ice-cream.
The restaurant leads on to the pool area where you can find a 1.3-metre black mirror infinity pool, surrounded by loungers and situated next to the bar which is well-stocked with some superb premium brand liquors. It is the ideal spot to relax amidst the breeze of the north-east coast.
This brand-new hotel has only nine exclusive bungalows and it is an amazing property to incorporate into a luxury holiday to Brazil. Four of the bungalows are the same, the standard suites if you like, however there is absolutely nothing standard about the rooms at Casana. All the rooms are fully automated featuring the best of modern technology meaning you can control your air conditioning, lighting, curtains and more from a bedside panel.
The standard suites are huge with 80m2 of space including an ocean-facing deck with loungers and hammocks. The next step up is the Pool Suite which includes a classy private pool. A Master Suite and a two-bedroom Master Suite are both also immaculate in their design and all suites have incredible bathrooms, some of which open out to sweeping ocean views. The best suite at Hotel Casana is the Pool Master Suite which combines an abundance of space with a private inﬁnity pool. The 100m2 suite has a king-size bed plus a lavish indoor/outdoor bathroom complete with a Jacuzzi, while the oceanfront wooden deck invites you into your stylish private pool area where you can relax in the breeze, sway in the hammocks or sunbathe on the plush double sunbed.
Each of the rooms includes luxury bed linen, TV with satellite channels, wireless phone, free Wi-Fi, an in-room safe, a coffee maker, an electric kettle, mini-bar, hairdryer, luxury bathrobes, a daily turn-down service and in-room dining.
The final room at the hotel is an unusual inclusion for a luxury property: a bunk bedroom. It is a great option though for children in a family group or for a group of kite surfers. The room features 6 single beds with a double indoor bathroom plus an outdoor shower, so all guests have the space and facilities to feel comfortable. The outside deck overlooks the pool of the Hotel Casana and the ocean. Offering a fabulous option for luxury family travel, the bunk room is truly original.
If you are staying at Casana but still needing to do business during your trip, then the high-speed internet is ideal, as is the business centre: a perfect space for conferencing with the office back home. The business centre is large enough to host an intimate group of around ten people if you wanted to arrange a business getaway or a small luxury incentive trip.
The main reason people will come to Hotel Casana though is for the beach, for relaxation and to kite-surf. This part of the Brazilian coast is famous for its consistent winds, ideal for kiting. The hotel has a fully equipped rental area where you can hire everything you need including helmets equipped with Bluetooth, enabling you to talk to your instructor as you are kiting. If you’re looking to kite-surf downwind, the hotel also has a speedboat to follow you along the coast and take you back at the end of the day. After a day on the water, the Kite Bar Lounge is the perfect spot to refuel. It is a sophisticated, yet informal space serving ice-cold beers and nutritious snacks, ideal for après-kite relaxation. The massage room also offers a variety of indulgent treatments if you want to relax and unwind after a long day of activities while there is also a state-of-the-art gym for those looking to work out during their beach stay
The hotel is located directly on the beach and is sure to quickly become one of the most sought-after properties on the continent, particularly now that flights land at the nearby Preá Cruz airport offering simple connections to São Paulo, Belo Horizonte and Recife.
Hotel Casana has already become one of our favourite hotels in Brazil and (say it quietly), perhaps even the best beach hotel in the country!