By Benjamin Parkin, Contributing Reporter
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – Those looking for rental alternatives to the increasingly expensive Zona Sul (South Zone) during the World Cup may do well to check out Tijuca, in Rio’s Zona Norte (North Zone). It is a historic neighborhood with a rich culture, vibrant commercial activity and plenty of transportation, as well as being situated next to the Maracanã Stadium – host of the seven World Cup games including the final match between June 12 and July 13th.
For many who visit Rio, Tijuca is too far from the famous beaches of Copacabana and Ipanema in Zona Sul (South Zone), despite its nesting in the Floresta da Tijuca. Yet for the football (soccer) focused traveler, the proximity to the World Cup matches may outweigh other factors.
Frederic Cockenpot, of WhereInRio Luxury Rentals and Sales, spoke to the Rio Times, “We have a lot of Carioca owners offering their properties in Tijuca near the stadium. However, we have very few request from supporters for these areas.”
“The reason is simple,” Cockenpot explains, “as most of the people want to enjoy the beach during the day. In the Zona Sul, you also have more places for going shopping than Tijuca.”
Yet he continued, “The most positive point about Tijuca is the price. As it’s not a touristic area and is requested less, people will find it cheaper for rentals. On the other hand, except for the stadium you are a bit far from the tourist areas.”
With astronomical rental prices being reported during the World Cup, many visitors will want to look beyond the Zona Sul in order to find something more affordable. On airbnb.com, where users can temporarily sublet their own properties, a month’s rent during the World Cup period (June 12th to July 13th) has risen by 102 percent, according to a report by O Globo.
While prices are more economical outside of Zona Sul, Tijuca is still the Zona Norte’s most expensive neighborhood, and certainly properties near the Maracanã Stadium will come at a significant fee. For example, a large apartment, fitting up to ten people, with views of the stadium can cost up to R$60,000 for a month according to a recent G1 report.
On airbnb.com, prices for a monthly rental during the World Cup in Tijuca average around R$25,000 to R$30,000 for a two bedroom apartment, hosting five or six people. Individual rooms over the same period could be found for R$3,000 to R$6,000.
The director of airbnb.com in Brazil, Christian Gessner, advised users against demanding inflated prices, saying, “This can affect the reputation of the user. If you require a value much higher than what is being offered, you could receive a negative evaluation” – thereby undermining the chances of successfully renting it out.
The Maracanã Stadium, which opened for public tours again just last October, is one of the most famous football stadiums in the world. During the World Cup, the stadium will host seven games, and will see the likes of Argentina, Spain and France in the group stages, as well as a round of sixteen game, quarter-final and the final itself (which, many hope, will feature an appearance from the Seleção).
Despite not being immediately on the beach, connection to the rest of the city is good, and Tijuca has numerous metro stations within close proximity, including Line 1 metro stations such as Saens Peña and São Francisco Xavier, and another, Uruguai, opening imminently, as well as, of course, Maracanã station on Line 2.