I am lying stretched out on a wooden bed covered with a brightly striped bath towel. The sun prickles my skin and a breeze caresses my body, preventing me from overheating.
Note to self: next time slather myself in sun lotion before lying down.
I look at the ripples on the transparent, blue water of the swimming pool – large enough to swim laps and surrounded by wooden walkways. Behind the pool a fence of woven branches of a local shrub separates Pousada Vila Bela Vista from the white sand beach and the Atlantic Ocean.
Above the waves fly colorful kites: blue, green, red and yellow, with logos printed on them that are unfamiliar to me. Every once in a while a kiter jumps in the air, trying to stay airborne as long as possible until gravity pulls him down. I hear the slapping of the waves on the shore and behind me the twittering of a couple of birds.
Relaxing or Kitesurfing?
While exploring Brazil’s fabulous beaches we met Patricia and Marzio, the owners of this place, in Jericoacoara, where they also own a guesthouse – named Pousada Vila Bela Vista as well. It clicked, we stayed with them for a couple of nights and Patricia invited us to check out their latest project: this pousada. And that’s exactly what we’re doing today. Just wonderful.
Let me tell you a bit more about this place.
The guesthouse is situated on the remote beach of Préa in the state of Ceará in northeast Brazil, far away from the touristy, crowded beaches around and east of Fortaleza. Preá is the nearest town – a pleasant 15-minute walk along the beach – whose main source of income is fishing. Having said that, the village is growing as a kitesurfing destination; along this same beach are two kitesurfing schools.
Guesthouse Vila Bela Vista is new and has three bungalows; two more are under construction. Each bungalow is built of massuranda hardwood and has a roof of decorative carnauba palm leaves. The rustic bungalows each have a spacious room with a king-sized bed and two single beds, making them perfect for a family stay. What I especially appreciate about the accommodation is how much shelf space there is to put all your stuff.
The ample bathroom, also built of wood, comes with a hot shower and a separate, open-air section where you can take a shower under a pitch-dark sky studded with stars. Let me tell you: Patricia and Marzio have been creative in designing all this.
The Personal Touch of Pousada Vila Bela Vista
We are not the only ones who click with Patricia and Marcio. They love to know their guests, enjoy talking to them and in everything they do make you feel they care about you. It shows in how they greet you, remember you when you return, want to know how you are doing.
In Jericoacoara this personal touch has paid off in a large number of annually returning guests and I have no doubt this will happen in this guesthouse as well.
This personal touch and care are also reflected in their staff. Staff members speak about their bosses with high regard and affection. Having loyal staff adds to the service that I get as a guest in Vila Bela Vista. I quickly learn their names: Mary daily prepares our breakfast; Carlos is the night guard and they enjoy having a chat with me while understanding and respecting my privacy.
Pousada Vila Bela Vista’s Amenities
- Rooms come with a hot shower, a fan and a safe. Aircon is unnecessary because the nights are cool and the windows consist of horizontal, wooden slats on all sides that you turn ninety degrees so air flows freely through the room.
- There are no TVs in the rooms or in the central dining room-cum-lounge, nor are there blaring radios, which I find an asset because the tranquility of the place is what appeals to me so much.
Food and Activities
Breakfast is included in the accommodation and comes with fresh fruit juice, yogurt, muesli, bread, ham, cheese, tropical fruit and coffee and tea. As the pousada is still under construction there is no restaurant yet. It will open the next kitesurfing season (starting June 2013) with a lunch menu and dinner. As Preá is at walking distance we eat there a couple of times in fish restaurants that serve excellently grilled fish as well as beef or chicken.
As I mentioned before, the guesthouse is a great place to relax. It has a swimming pool large enough to do laps if you like, a fenced-in garden for kids to play, and right outside is the extensive beach to go for walks.
Note that this is not a sunbathing beach, as you will get sandblasted by the wind. For the active guests there are kitesurfing courses for beginners and the experienced kiters can take part in 10 to 15 kilometer long downwinders (high season, with constant and strong wind, is June – February).
On request Patricia and Marcio organize:
- Buggy rides into the dunes and/or to natural phenomena like the Pedra Furada (Rock with hole).
- Buggy rides to the sweet water lagoon of Lagoa Azul for an afternoon of swimming or eating lunch.
- A day trip to Jericoacoara, a pleasant, tourist town bustling with guesthouses, restaurants, souvenir shops and travel agencies and a good place for a nice dinner, to watch the sunset over the ocean or drink a caipirinha on the beach.
To learn more check their website (in English and Portuguese).