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“Decent 4-stay business hotel”
Review of Windsor Barra

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Windsor Barra
Ranked #35 of 282 Hotels in Rio de Janeiro
Certificate of Excellence
Lund, Sweden
Level Contributor
51 reviews
49 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 89 helpful votes
“Decent 4-stay business hotel”
Reviewed 23 January 2011

We stayed here for a week while attending a conference held on-site. This is a nice hotel which lives up to its 4-star rating. The rooms are nice, perfectly clean and well-decorated, with very nice and spacious bathrooms. We paid R$471 for a "double executive superior", which seemed a lot for a fairly standard room, but after shopping around we found this is simply what it costs for this standard in this area.

The location is somewhat away from the center of Rio, on the (very long, lovely and rather quiet) Barra de Tijuica Beach. It seems to be a very common site for meetings and conferences so I imagine many guests stay here to attend on-site meetings. However it is still rather easy to get into the center - city buses stop right outside the hotel and reach Ipanema in as little as 15 minutes (just ask at the front desk, that's what we did). Taxis are also very easy if you want to go somewhere specific.

The hotel also offers various city tours, which are rather expensive (if I recall, around R$100 for a car for 4, for a full day) but still much cheaper than those offered by our conference.

The Sheraton which is a few minutes away is a similar standard, so most attendees of our conference stayed at one of these two and there was a lot of comparison. To summarise: price is very similar (the Sheraton was slightly more at this time); Sheraton has larger rooms (mini-suites) and on average better views (although our 8th-floor room had a nice beach view). However the Windsor rooms seems to have slightly better decor and much nicer bathrooms. Also (the deciding factor for us), the Sheraton offers no breakfast, while the free breakfast at the Windsor was an very extensive and very high quality spread. There was good variety of all the standard items (breads, cereals, meats/cheeses, hot items), but quality was definitely above par, the selection of fresh fruit was extensive and there were made-to-order omelettes (no extra charge). We also ate lunch several times at the hotel restaurant (paid by the conference) and the food was very good.

One major negative: the hotel offers wireless (and wired) internet, but it is VERY expensive and more importantly, the signal is terrible. We had difficulty getting a signal at all (on the 8th floor, about the middle of the hotel), it was very slow, we could only connect one computer at a time, and one full day there was no access at all. In the end the internet was not listed on our hotel bill, even though we never complained directly to the front desk (only to tech services).

There was also free wireless on the conference levels (paid by the conference but administered by the hotel), and the signal here was also terrible. Otherwise the conference facilities were entirely acceptable, although fairly standard.

Overall: this is a very good place to stay if attending a meeting or other even in this area. If you are looking for a quiet stay away from the center of Rio (but still 4-stay accomodation), this may also be a good choice. Otherwise, for most tourists there are probably better choices closer to the center.

  • Stayed September 2010, travelled on business
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Helpful?
Thank kymberand
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Toronto
Level Contributor
10 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 January 2011

Spent a week over new years. The positives:

Roof pool, service is fine, breakfast buffet is great. Angela at front desk and all the people were delightful!

Air conditioning was either too cool or too warm but we managed.

Would go back.

  • Stayed December 2010, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank yyzCouple02
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Manila, Philippines
Level Contributor
26 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 40 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 November 2010

We stayed for a long weekend as my husband had to attend a meeting in Rio on Monday. I would not stay here again for the following reasons:
1. Users: The Hotel is used for conferences....large ones and several every day. So there are large groups of people coming and going through the foyer. The foyer felt like a train station and was designed for large groups moving through. It didn't have a welcoming feel and was just a large thoroughfare.
2. Food: The restaurant was a glorified canteen and the food was stodgy and boring. The breakfast buffet was your standard fare, and the same every day. The bar in the foyer was uninspiring for having a drink at. The cafe by the pool and fitness area had a clinical feel to it and was uninviting. There are beautiful views in Rio and you felt that with a bit more imagination they could have created a beautiful area to sit, have a drink while the sun went down.
3. Rooms: the rooms were standard with no view of the beach. The bathrooms were roomy though.
4. Decor: The decor was insipid and you could have been anywhere in the world. Once you passed from the train station lobby into the elevators you then went to your floor where you were in a long hallway to your room. Standard boring architecture. Check out the Sheraton Barra down the road which has awesome architecture and a nice flow.
5. Location: The beach is the most beautiful one in Rio, you have a big mall close by to shop at BUT.....you will pay in taxis if you want to get to Ipanema/Copacabana where there are some great restaurants or to have access to the tourist sites. A tour operator said we would need to meet them closer in town, or you can use the hotel's tours but add an extra $80 Real to what other operators charge. Please note that buses run from the main road in front of the hotel for $2.5 Reals compared to $30 -45 Reals in a taxi. We used the buses on a number of occasions with no problem.
TIP: Book to go on a H Stern Tour which has a car that takes you to the workshop in Ipanema. After the tour hang out in the town/beach and then get the last car back to your hotel for free.
SUMMARY: If I was attending a conference at the Windsor Barra I would stay here, otherwise for the same amount of money you could stay at the Sheraton Barra down the road which is a much nicer place and has an amazing pool area which leaves the Windsor for dead!

  • Stayed November 2010, travelled on business
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Helpful?
3 Thank Lisa_S1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
York, England
Level Contributor
18 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 37 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 November 2010

We stayed for one night in Oct and had a great experience. The reception staff were helpful, including extending our check-out time to later in the afternoon to accomodate our late departure.

The hotel is large and houses a convention centre which meant there were lots of business guests and people milling around attending a conference. This wasn't an issue but meant the hotel had a slightly different feel to it, somehow slightly less relaxed.

The rooms are of good size, huge comfy bed which was at least a super-king. Great bathroom with good shower. The housekeeping staff turned down the bed and left chocolates while we were out at dinner which was a nice touch.

The rooftop pool was good, not huge but big enough to accomodate around 15 guests on loungers. There's waiter service and good lunch/snack food can be eaten at the pool or in the bar next to it.

Breakfast was great, a really good selection of fruit, pastries and cooked food.

Location is great for the beach, one of the better ones in Rio. There's not much else there though in terms of restaurants and bars - we also stayed in a hotel on Copacabana which is much better for nightlife.

  • Stayed October 2010, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank emma9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Houston, Texas
Level Contributor
88 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
Reviewed 20 September 2010

This was my frist time to Rio. I went on a business trip but was also able to take my wife. We found the staff really helpful and friendly. They all spoke English. The hotel was very comfortable and in a nice area. The breakfast buffet was really good. The bed was very comfortable. The only complaint I have is that the hallway was paved with tile and that made the sound echo. Normal guests walking and talking down the hall made the sound echo. This is not cool at 6 to 7 in the morning. Also, the bells on the elevator were too loud. Everytime an elevator arrived at our floor to pick up passangers, the "ding" was too loud. This was easily remedied with ear plugs. The roof top pool is really cool. I would say the pluses out-weighed the minuses.

  • Stayed September 2010, travelled on business
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Helpful?
1 Thank HungryDave1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Frisco, Colorado
Level Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed 19 August 2010

So I was in Rio for a conference. The organizers said it was best to stay here at the Windsor Barra and they secured a "special" rate for us. It was the equivelent of 10USD off the rack rate. Wifi charges were criminal....when I complained I was directed to a Manager by the name of Rafael. The worst jerk I have ever dealt with in a hotel. He barely spoke english which is okay but he started basically yelling at me in Portuguese in the lobby. I was being calm and even keeled and was just trying to see if I could get a credit because I paid for it but never used it on this day in particular. He flipped out and went into a rage in the lobby. Said something about "you americans" I could not understand the rest. I later found out he is part owner of the hotel. Unreal!!!!!! The rooms were nice, the cafe was great, the food was amazing and the front desk staff was somewhat helpful. I will make sure my company never puts anybody up in this place again after how I was treated.

  • Stayed August 2010, travelled on business
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Helpful?
3 Thank petrolking
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Annemasse, France
Level Contributor
154 reviews
48 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 70 helpful votes
Reviewed 19 June 2010

We were there with the colleagues and team-mates for the management of a congress. really nice hotel with a beautiful swimming pool on the roof and great beach service... nice rooms and breakfast high level.

  • Stayed May 2007, travelled on business
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Helpful?
Thank Confmanager
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Windsor Barra

Property: Windsor Barra
Address: Avenida Lucio Costa 2630, Rio de Janeiro, State of Rio de Janeiro 22620-172, Brazil
Phone Number:
Region: Brazil > State of Rio de Janeiro > Rio de Janeiro > Barra da Tijuca
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#9 Business Hotel in Rio de Janeiro
#11 Romantic Hotel in Rio de Janeiro
#11 Family Hotel in Rio de Janeiro
#22 Luxury Hotel in Rio de Janeiro
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Windsor Barra 4.5*
Number of rooms: 338
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Windsor Barra Hotel Barra Da Tijuca
Windsor Barra Rio De Janeiro, Brazil

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