Rio de Janeiro: The New “South Beach” for New Years

Each year, more and more gay men seeking a sexy, exciting New Years vacation are trading in their “Cosmos” for “Caipirinhas,” and heading to Rio de Janeiro, leaving the usual winter get-aways like South Beach behind. This year, Zoom Vacations® can bring you to the heart of the action.

“Rio today reminds me of what South Beach was like 10 years ago,” said Joel Cabrera, the owner of Zoom Vacations®, a gay vacation company based in the US, “The beaches are loaded with eye candy as far as the eye can see, and the night scene explodes with some of the best venues and music in the world.”

The center of Rio’s gay scene is Ipanema, with its huge gay beach, trendy restaurants, and unique gay bars.

“Everyone wants to stay in Ipanema,” said Cabrera, “It’s unlike any place I’ve ever been, and you do things you probably would never do back home, like walk around town, go shopping, and go for lunch wearing nothing but a Speedo and flip-flops. But, everyone does it, and it’s totally normal…and sexy to boot.”

A typical day in Rio starts with a huge Brazilian breakfast buffet at your hotel with fresh exotic fruits and juices, freshly baked breads, and incredible meats and cheeses. After breakfast, Zoom Vacations® suggests you try your hand at tandem hang-gliding, which takes you over Rio’s beautiful beaches and tropical jungle.

Or, they can take you on a professionally guided tour of one of the favelas, the small settlements of jerry-built shacks that cover the hills around Rio. Favelas form much of Rio’s culture and are credited with creating the Samba, and a visit will provide an unparalleled understanding of Rio’s culture.

On other days you may do a little morning shopping or perhaps take a trip to Corcovado, where the famous Christ Statue, Christo Redento stands watching over the city.

Whatever you decide, at some point everyone flocks to the beach to mingle, reconnect with people met at a club the night before, and drink caipirinhas (a Brazilian drink made from fresh lime juice, tons of sugar, and a strong liquor called cachaca).

After a few hours basking in the sun, it’s time for a late lunch at a Brazilian Bar B Q, called a churrascaria, or perhaps an outside café where you can enjoy a sandwich and a chopp (a draft beer). One thing for sure, you won’t leave Rio without taking in a lot of meat, pun intended.

Your Rio vacation reaches its climax on December 31st, where you will see everything you’ve been missing all these years spending New Years back in the States.

On New Years Eve in Rio, everyone from the tourists to cariocas (the name given to the locals of Rio de Janeiro) dress in white, and walk into the water to cleanse their past year’s sins by giving an offering to the sea goddess, Yemanja. Millions of people flock to Copacabana Beach to hear live music and watch the world-famous fireworks display.

It is truly a destination of beauty and contrast. Everyone is sun-kissed from a week of beach parties, hang-gliding, and touring this sensual city, and dressed all in white, the contrast makes even the once-pale tourists look beautifully exotic.

However, the most unique dichotomy is the week of partying contrasted with the spiritual “cleansing” of New Years Eve in Rio.

Zoom Vacations®’ New Years package in Rio provides an insider’s edge to everything the city has to offer, including Accommodations at the highly sought-after Ipanema Plaza Hotel, private beach parties, a phenomenal helicopter tour of the city, free cell phones for the week, and more. They even can hook you up with optional activities such as hang-gliding, and unforgettable tours of the Tijuca Forest, favelas, and even the world-famous samba schools.

Rio de Janeiro in English is River of January, and Zoom Vacations® will show you that there is no better time to be there!

John Sarley of LA who joined Zoom Vacations® last New Years said, “Exploring Rio with the Zoom boys doubles the fun and cuts the hassles in half. Four thumbs up!”

Jerry Davis of Chicago said, ” Rio is a magical place to be for New Years….the sun is blazing, the energy in the streets is electric, and the personalized service of the Zoom staff is second to none….I look forward to coming back for years to come!”

Jay Deratany of Chicago said, “Rio and Zoom Vacations® are both hot, hot, hot! We so enjoyed the excursions, the beaches, the wonderful meals and mostly the gracious hospitality of the Zoom group. Without a doubt, I can say that you haven’t been on a vacation until you have been on a Zoom Vacation!”

Franco Castiglione of NYC says the best things about Rio for New Years are “Fabulous beaches and hot spots, gorgeous guys, and it’s so cheap!”

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