Iconic Bossa Nova Bar in Downtown Rio de Janeiro Is Latest Victim of Virus

Home office and social distancing measures have taken a heavy toll on the restaurants, bars and shops that catered to the now-vanished downtown business set, whose numbers now include the Villarino, which closed indefinitely on November 16th.

RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL - The year was 1956, and two of the founding fathers of bossa nova, Tom Jobim and Vinicius de Moraes, had just met at a Rio de Janeiro bar called the Casa Villarino.

The friendship that started that day would change the history of music, as the pianist and the poet helped reinvent Brazilian samba to give the world a silky-smooth new genre that would come to define modernity and cool.

The meeting also sealed the Villarino's place in history. But 64 years on, the iconic bar and restaurant in the city center has closed . . .

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