Sao Paulo, Brazil
Lorena, 28
Graphic Designer at Claudia Magazine
see her Sao Paulo city guide

What do you do and why do you do it?

I work as a graphic designer at CLAUDIA magazine, which is the biggest women's title in Latin America, published by Editora Abril. I love photography, fashion, and everything else about the editorial world. More recently, I've started art directing food photography and I love everything about it! When I'm not working, I take a shot at pottery. I'm also obssessed with Pinterest and Instagram and I'm using both to plan my wedding, next year.

You’re broken hearted - what tracks does your heartbreak playlist consist of?

Your Ex-lover is Dead, by Stars and definitely something by Adele

What are the best TV shows of all time?

Breaking Bad (but I'm a sucker for reality shows like Project Runway, America's Next Top Model, America's Got Talent, So You Think You Can Dance... I watch reruns all the time)

Name some spots in Sao Paulo that are good for a Tinder date.

Candle light dinner at Chou, if you want to make a big impression. I actually met my fiancé on Tinder - we went for the classic dinner and a movie date at Kinoplex Itaim (a movie theather complex). Now we're planning our wedding!

Who’s your hero and where in Sao Paulo would you take them out for a serious hang?

I'd love to take Kate Middleton to a neighborhood padaria and have her try pão na chapa and pingado - traditional Brazilian breakfast - and hear about her impressions of our less-than-royal lifestyle.

Where do you buy those fabulous clothes of yours?

I can't say I put a lot of effort into fashion, even though I love clothes. I'm actually pretty lazy, so I turn over to fast-fashion chains like Zara, Forever 21, H&M and Topshop (those make up 80% of my closet, for sure)... If I need to splurge for a special occasion, I'll shop at Ellus, John John or Animale, which are my favorite Brazilian brands.

What’s the area/ spot in town you’ll never be caught dead in?

Villa Mix - it's a dance club/concert venue that plays sertanejo, a Brazilian genre that I legit HATE #sorrynotsorry

What’s the thing you LOVE to do in your city that you never get to do?

I wish I had more time to explore the Centro (our downtown). It's been recently remodeled and there are loads of cool spots popping up every month. São Paulo is extremely HUGE and it's very spread out, so it can be a hassle. But, with a little planing, you'll get lots done.

What’s the most decadent / extreme dish you ever ate in Sao Paulo and where did you get it?

I think I'd consider dessert at Paris 6 pretty extreme in sweetness. It's a brownie-chocolate-ice-cream-topping situation you won't regret. Our typical feijoada is also a dish to beat.

Is there a hidden bar / hole in the wall in Sao Paulo that you particularly like?

São Paulo has loads of hidden treasures. My latest find was Seen, a rooftop bar on Tivoli Hotel. I went there for a girls' night out and had amazing drinks, surrounded by beautiful, fun people. You also get an awesome 360º view of the city!

What’s the most expensive restaurant / spa / hotel you’ve ever been to in Sao Paulo? How much did it cost and what did you get there?

My friends got me a spa treatment at Lush Spa for my birthday. It was fabulous.

What restaurant in Sao Paulo looks crap, but the food’s amazing?

Mocotó isn't super classy, but the food is very traditional of the Northeast of Brazil. It's worth the drive if you want to experience that part of our culture.

Where can you get the best cocktail in Sao Paulo? Which one do you like?

Moscow Mules are my favorite at the moment. I've had pretty good ones at Casa 92, Banana Café and Olivo.

Where would you take your partner in Sao Paulo if you wanted to really pamper them?

Walking down Rua Oscar Freire is like walking down Rodeo Dr. You can window shop the afternoon away and stop for coffee at any of the trendy spots. Even if you don't have money to buy anything, you can still visit the Havaiana, Melissa and Riachuelo concept stores and have a great time.

Which snacks can you only get in your country, and which ones do you recommend?

Brazilian food is absolutely amazing. Pão de queijo is a must. Brigadeiros for sweets. And I can give you a full list of things you have to try. Trust me, I'm an expert ;)

What’s the one place you think is overrated in Sao Paulo?

I'm not that crazy about Vila Madalena. It's a very bohemian neighborhood, full of bars that play Brazilian music like samba. I like the chill vibe, but it's usually too crowded for comfort.

What’s the one place you think is underrated in Sao Paulo?

Pinheiros. It's my favorite neighborhood, where there's a perfect balance between bohemian, cultural, and fine dining options.

What are the Sao Paulo spots a first-time visitor can’t miss?

Parque Ibirapuera is a popular spot, but I love Mercado Municipal, which is our public market. You'll be blown away by the variety of fruits that you can try and you can also eat our famous pastel (deep-fried meal stuffed with all kinds of ingredients) and ham sandwich.

Tomorrow’s your last day in Sao Paulo. How do you spend it?

I'd have lunch at one of my favorite restaurants, Santinho, at Museu da Casa Brasileira, and just spend the afternoon lying on their lawn, watching the sun fade away.

What’s your favorite vacation city in the world and why?

It's a close call between New York and London - I love the cosmopolitan vibe in both!

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photos by

Giulio Palleta