We had been fortunate that all of the places that we had stayed in were really nice. Unfortunately, our streak ended when we stayed at Pousada Atoba.
It was challenging to find available rooms in Paraty last minute which were close to our budget. I knew that whatever we booked would not be amazing, but didn’t think that it would be as bad as it was.
Getting to Pousada Atoba
We arrived via bus and knew that the hotel was quite a distance from the city center. We went over to the taxi stand and were floored when we were quoted 30R or $7 for a short 5 minute ride. Not wanting the taxi mafia to rip us off, we started looking for a public bus that would get us close.
As is common with a lot of South American cities, the public bus routes are not well marked. To add further complication we don’t speak Portuguese which made asking anyone for help difficult. We must have had distress in our faces because a guy about our age came up and asked us in English if we needed help. We told him that we were getting gringo priced on the taxis and wanted to take the public bus to our hotel but didn’t know which one. He was very knowledgable and told us that the bus we wanted to take was the circular bus. We thanked him and headed over to the buses.
After waiting about 15 minutes our bus arrived. We paid 2.3R or 56 cents each to ride the bus. About 10 minutes into the ride we were very close to our hotel. We pulled the stop request and hopped off.
When we arrived to the hotel we said our opening line that we used throughout Brazil “Ingles? Espanol?”. Even though we had been able to get around using English and Spanish, the woman at the desk only spoke Portuguese. We found it strange, especially for a hospitality worker who likely gets a lot of foreigners.
She walked us to our room, pointed to a sheet which had information in both Portuguese and English, then walked out of our room. It was extremely bizarre since we didn’t even know she left, she kind of just slipped out when we were not looking.
Pousada Atoba – Room A
Our room was on the lower level and faced the pool. There was a private hammock outside of our room which was very comfortable.
When we first saw the room I thought to myself, this isn’t bad. I could tell that the room had been updated recently. There was a full size bed and a twin bed which we used to hold all of our gear. I liked that there was a ceiling fan in addition to the air conditioner since it allowed us to keep cool at night without the room getting too cold.
It was after we spent more time in the room that we started to see what the issues were.
The not so good:
- There were tiny little bugs that found their way into the room and got all over our stuff that was on the twin bed
- The bed was not very comfortable and you could tell that the mattress was quite old
- Out of the 5 pillows in the room, only 2 were good. The others we really heavy for some unknown reason
- There was only a sheet on the bed and no blanket anywhere in the room
- There was a weird smell in the room which Andy said was similar to the smell in our first hotel in Krabi, Thailand
The bathroom had also been recently remodeled which was nice. The sink faucet was a bit loose and like most bathrooms in South America, there was no ventilation. Other than that, it was pretty good.
There was a suicide shower which was hot and had good water pressure. I was happy about this since our shower in Rio was not great.
Pousada Atoba – Amenities
It has been a while since we have had a mini fridge in a hotel room. We really enjoyed this since we were able to buy some beers and bottled water at the store to drink later. The best part though was having Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups that were nice and firm from being stored in the fridge.
While the hotel had a pool, it was quite small. The weather wasn’t the best and never got too warm so we never ended up taking a dip. There were mostly just kids in the pool, the adults choosing to sunbathe on the deck instead.
The breakfast was large and had good selection. There was everything from fresh fruit, cake, breads, ham, cheese, eggs and juice. Both days that we were at the hotel we ate quite a lot at breakfast which allowed us to have a late lunch.
I knew that the location was outside of the city center when I booked it. I figured that it couldn’t be a big deal to walk to town. We were right, it was an easy walk which was not a big deal. In truth, we thought that we would take the bus more often but in all of the times that we were walking, we only saw the bus come by once.
We liked that the part of town that we were in was less crowded than the city center. The restaurants nearby were the same price, but strangely there were no shops in the area. This wasn’t a big deal for us as we were able to do all of our shopping when we were downtown.
We didn’t love our stay at Pousada Atoba but did enjoy the Brazilian coast. We probably would have liked the coast even better if the weather had been more cooperative during our time there. We had the same overcast weather with near constant mist rain that we had in Rio de Janeiro.
While the breakfast was good and the grounds well maintained, our room needed a little more love. If the bug problem was taken care of and there were new mattresses, pillows and a blanket was included I think that it would go a long way.
I think the most frustrating part of our stay was that the staff spoke only Portuguese. I realize that not every hotel has staff that speak English, but to have staff that doesn’t speak Spanish either – that just blew our minds. Luckily Portuguese is similar to Spanish so we were able to communicate with the staff using our Spanish even if it wasn’t the prettiest thing in the world.