South America > Brazil > Southeast (Brazil) > São Paulo (state) > Grande São Paulo > São Paulo > São Paulo/West Side
West is a region in São Paulo. If the Downtown represents the São Paulo of the past, probably no other region represents the São Paulo of present day as well as the West. Although it contains only 7.7% of the population of the municipality, the West is by far the most economically active region, concentrating 28.5% of the jobs. And with little doubt, the West is the place to be in the city for dining, drinking, clubbing, art, culture, business and science.
However, despite its reputation as a "wealthy" area, the West is also the region where São Paulo's social inequalities are most blatant. Here it is possible to find everything, from mansions and luxurious apartments to working class suburbs and slums (favelas), with extremes sometimes quite close to each other.
The West is divided into 15 districts, grouped into three subprefectures:
- Lapa subprefecture: Jaguará, Jaguaré, Vila Leopoldina, Lapa, Barra Funda and Perdizes.
- Butantã subprefecture: Rio Pequeno, Butantã, Raposo Tavares, Vila Sônia and Morumbi.
- Pinheiros subprefecture: Alto de Pinheiro, Pinheiros, Jardim Paulista and Itaim Bibi.
Note: Avenida Paulista is partly on the West. For places in this avenue and up to 4 blocks from it, check the São Paulo/Paulista section.
Although neither the largest nor the most populous region of the city, the West is a probably the most diverse. The districts described below are the ones that have more attractions for a visitor, although many attractions listed in this page are in other districts.
- Butantã — The life in this former farming area changed during the early 1900s, with the coming from Instituto Butantan and University of São Paulo. Butantã turned into a middle-class suburban area, whose real estate is quickly rising in value.
- Barra Funda — For decades, this district carried industrial activity and was home to Italian immigrants who worked in the factories. After the decline of industry, many areas become degraded, but the population became more diversified and cultural activity has intensified. Today, Barra Funda has economically recovered and is home to many attractions, and it is emerging as a new center of nightlife in the city.
- Itaim Bibi — For most of the past century, the neighborhoods of this district, like Brooklin and Vila Olímpia, were calm and residential, strongly influenced by German and Italian immigrants who lived in little ranches. The constant expansion of the city on a northeast-southwest direction, combined with government investment, made the region the new point for businesses, hotels and residences. As one may expect, the area also began to attract all kinds of service to cater to the richer people that moved here, including restaurants, bars, clubs and shopping malls.
- Jardim Paulista (Jardins) — From Avenida Paulista, if you decide to go down on Rua Augusta towards river Pinheiros, you will find a sea of side streets named after countries of Europe and the Americas, full of trees and elegant houses (although some are hard to see, hidden behind tall walls). It is probably the area with the most expensive shops and restaurants in the city.
- Morumbi — The district is home to the government of the state of São Paulo, and a large portion of the district is occupied by mansions, where many of the richest people of the city live. A number of favelas also exist, illustrating the social contrasts of São Paulo in an almost stereotypical manner. The quick growth of middle class apartments, as well as the expected coming of a monorail, are likely to change the characteristics of the district and are a matter of concern among its inhabitants.
- Pinheiros — Vila Madalena and other neighborhoods of this district have become a hot spot for artists, writers, journalists, movie directors, intellectuals in general and, of course, wannabes in every one of these categories. It's not uncommon to run into a famous Brazilian artist – or nearly so – when casually drinking in a bar, leaving the supermarket or having an espresso.
By metro and train
The east side of the Pinheiros river is well-covered by the rail network. In the other side there is a single station (Butantã) although other are planned in Vila Sônia and Morumbi. These are metro and train stations in each district:
- Alto de Pinheiros: Pinheiros, Cidade Universitária, Villa Lobos-Jaguaré
- Barra Funda: Barra Funda
- Butantã: Butantã
- Itaim Bibi: Vila Olímpia, Berrini
- Jardim Paulista: Consolação
- Lapa: Domingos de Moraes, Lapa
- Perdizes: Sumaré, Vila Madalena
- Pinheiros: Hebraica-Rebouças, Cidade Jardim, Faria Lima
- Vila Leopoldina: Ceasa, Imperatriz Leopoldina
The West is connected to the Northwest, Northeast, South, and north part of the Southeast by Marginal Pinheiros, and to the South-Central and south part of the Southeast by Avenida dos Bandeirantes. Connection to the Historical Center and to the north part of the South-Central is made by non-express corridors, like Av. Rebouças, Av. Cidade Jardim and Av. Juscelino Kubitschek.
A car (or taxi) is particularly convenient to reach places in the west side of the Pinheiros river, and also to enjoy the nightlife as walking during the night is not recommended in most places (see #Stay safe).
Other than car, buses are the only way to reach most places in the west side of the Pinheiros river. There is a dedicated bus corridor that crosses the West region in east-west direction, starting at the Historical Center and passing through Av. Rebouças and Av. Francisco Morato.
The West is a large region, with main attractions relatively spread. As such, using metro/train, buses or a car is recommended to extensively cover them. If you have a bit more time, however, some areas can be nicely explored on foot or on pedals.
- Cycleway Marginal Pinheiros (see São Paulo main section) is partly located in the West.
- Cycleway USP, from Butantã train station to Gate 1 of University of São Paulo. Mostly intended for students of USP commuting to the Metro station. 840 m.
- A large portion of Ciclofaixa de Lazer (see São Paulo main article) is also in the West and can be used on Sundays.
Two nice areas to be explored on foot are the Itaim Bibi (see #Skyscrapers) and Jardim Paulista districts. The two areas are relatively large, however, so it is a good idea to plan your walking route to pass through the most interesting museums, landmarks and shopping areas. Otherwise you may spend a lot of time in boring residential streets.
- 1 Brooklin Novo, Itaim Bibi (station Berrini, next to station Morumbi). Perhaps the most impressive business center of the city, Brooklin Novo is between Av. Eng. Luiz Carlos Berrini and the Pinheiros river. From here you can also see one of São Paulo's most famous landmarks, the bridge Ponte Octavio Frias de Oliveira, more known by locals as Ponte Estaiada (tip: the best view of the bridge is from Ponte do Morumbi). Not many restaurants in the streets, but you can eat at Shopping Nações Unidas (more like a food court than a shopping mall) or at the furniture shopping center D&D.
- 2 Vila Olímpia, Itaim Bibi (Contains stations Cidade Jardim and Vila Olímpia). Another important business center is between Av. Faria Lima and the Pinheiros river. In comparison to Brooklin Novo, this area has more bars and restaurants, and you can also see more people in the streets. A curious phenomenon is that during weekends at 1AM or so, you can see traffic jams in Av. Faria Lima, due to many young people going to the nightlife in Vila Olímpia.
Museums and cultural centers
The campus of University of São Paulo (USP) in Butantã, Cidade Universitária, is home to 7 museums (only 3 described below: see the USP website for others). Pinheiros and Jardim Paulista are the place to find small and medium art galleries of local and international artists (not listed here). Combined with Memorial da América Latina, Instituto Tomie Ohtake, Instituto Butantan, and other museums and institutes, that makes the West possibly the city's most important area in terms of culture and science.
- 3 Memorial da América Latina, Av. Áuro Soares M Andrade, 564 - Barra Funda (Near Barra Funda station), ☏ . This cultural and political center about Latin America and its culture was designed by the Brazilian premium architect Oscar Niemeyer. It was the former meeting point for the Latin American Parliament. Now it hosts expositions, a library, a research center, and many cultural events along the year. Check the website for the programme.
- 4 Instituto Butantan, Av. Vital Brasil, 1500 - Butantã (10-min walk from Butantã station), ☏ . Tu-Su 9AM-4PM. Instituto Butantan was founded in 1901, and has become one of the city’s main attractions with its five wings, which are open to visitation: the Biology Museum, History Museum, Serpentarium, Primatarium, and the Microbiology Museum. The main topics are, as one would expect, snakes, poisonous animals and virus. The venom farm is a major attraction and visitors can see the snakes housed in representations of their natural environments. The park also contains rare tree types. free to R$6.50.
- 5 Instituto Tomie Ohtake, Avenida Faria Lima 201, entrance on Rua Coropés, ☏ . Tu-Su 11AM-8PM. The audacious architecture of this institute is a highlight in Pinheiros. A cultural center with exhibit halls, theaters and workshops.
- 6 Museu da Casa Brasileira (MCB), Av. Brigadeiro Faria Lima, 2705, Pinheiros (15-min walk from Cidade Universitária station), ☏ . Museum about the history of architecture and decoration of houses in Brazil.
- Museu da Imagem e Som de São Paulo (MIS), Avenida Europa, 158 - Jardim Paulista. Museum about recorded image and sound. Contains 350,000 pieces of films, discs, records and photo albums. Hosts some quite interesting expositions.
- 7 Museu de Arte Contemporânea (MAC), Rua da Reitoria, 160, Cidade Universitária, ☏ . The contemporary art museum is one of the most important in Latin America. Contains about 10,000 works and its library, about 9,000 books.
- 8 Museu Brasileiro da Escultura, Avenida Europa, 218, Jardim Paulista, ☏ . Tu-Su 10AM-7PM. A private museum that is partly open-air and partly underground, created to prevent the construction of a shopping mall in the same area. Although focused on sculpture, it hosts diverse expositions.
- 9 Museu da Polícia Civil (Museu do Crime), Praça Prof. Reinaldo Porchat, 219, Cidade Universitária, ☏ . Tu-F 1-5PM. A museum about the history of the police - and also the criminals - of São Paulo. free.
- 10 [formerly dead link] Museu de Arqueologia e Etnologia (MAE), Av. Professor Almeida Prado, 1466, Cidade Universitária. The museum of archeology from USP is the right place to learn about the history of indigenous people in Brazil, as well as other cultures.
- 11 Estação Ciência da Universidade de São Paulo, Rua Guaicurus, 1394 - Lapa (near Lapa station). Tu-F 8AM-6PM, Sa Su 9AM-6PM. Where adults and kids have the opportunity to improve their knowledge (and at the same time have fun) on astronomy, physics, meteorology and biology, among others. R$4 (free in some days).
- 12 Fundação Maria Luisa e Oscar Americano, Avenida Morumbi, 4077 - Morumbi, ☏ . Simultaneously a museum and a park. You can see sculptures, paintings and objects from all parts of the city's history. You can also drink tea, enjoy the nature, and see performances of Brazilian artists.
- 13 Beco do Batman, Rua Gonçalo Afonso, around 121, Vila Madalena (17-min walk from Sumaré station). The "Batman Alley" is a small street with walls covered with graffiti, forming a true open air art gallery and one of the most vivid manifestations of São Paulo's graffiti culture.
- 14 [dead link] Museu de Anatomia Veterinária, Av. Prof. Orlando Marques de Paiva, 87 (http://mav.fmvz.usp.br/), ☏ , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Tu-F 9AM-5PM; Sa 9AM-2PM. Largest collection of veterinary medicine in Brazil, with over 2,000 pieces, including taxidermized animals, skeletons and anatomic models. Guided visits must be scheduled in advance. R$6 (individual); R$3 (students, professors); free (1st Tuesday of the month, 60+).
- 15 Palácio dos Bandeirantes, Avenida Morumbi, 4.500 - Morumbi. Tu-Su 10AM-5PM (hourly guided visits). The house of the government of the state of São Paulo, and home to the governor. Contains a garden with 90,000 m², inclusing patches of preserved rainforest.
- 16 Casa do Butantã (Casa do Bandeirante), Praça Monteiro Lobato, Butantã (near Cidade Universitária station). One of the oldest houses of São Paulo, dating from the 18th century. The house was inhabited until 1954.
- Capela do Morumbi, Av. Morumbi 5387 - Morumbi, ☏ . Tu-Su 9AM-5PM. A small church believed to date from the colonial period, but its true origins remain a mystery. After its reformation, it is used for cultural events and exposition. free.
- Igreja Nossa Senhora do Brasil, Praça Nossa Senhora do Brasil, Jardim Paulista (Crossing between Av. Brasil and R. Colômbia). Beautiful church constructed in Baroque style.
- Santuário de Fátima (Santuário Nossa Senhora do Rosário de Fátima), Av. Dr. Arnaldo, 1831, Perdizes (Near Sumaré station). Church dedicated to Our Lady of Fatima, from Portugal. One of the main landmarks of the Perdizes district.
- Casa Bola, Rua Amauri, 352 - Itaim Bibi (13-min walk from Cidade Jardim station). A weird ball-shaped house that sometimes hosts expositions.
Parks and green areas
- Pinheiros River. Despite its pollution, the Pinheiros river is still the dominating figure in the scenario of the West side of São Paulo. The shores of the river, with their vegetation being gradually restored, have become a really pleasant view. The bad smell of the river may take some to get used, through. One of the best ways to watch the river is to take the cycling route from Vila Olímpia to Jurubatuba stations, in the east shore, or walk over the bridges.
- 17 Parque Villa-Lobos, Avenida Prof. Fonseca Rodrigues, 1655, Alto de Pinheiros (near Jaguaré-Villa-Lobos station), ☏ . 7AM-7PM. A park popular for sports and outdoor activities, such as cycling and skating. The park also hosts musical presentations. For proximity with nature, there are better parks in the city.
- 18 Praça do Relógio, USP - Butantã. The 176,000-m² square, in the middle of University of São Paulo, contains green areas the replicate the 6 ecosystems from the state of São Paulo, totalling 180 species of plants. The 50 m high tower is Torre do Relógio - its 12 panels represent the 12 areas of knowledge explored in the university.
- 19 Praça do Pôr-do-Sol (Praça Coronel Custódio Fernandes), Alto de Pinheiros (about 10-min walk from Cidade Universitária station). This square is, reputedly, one of the best places of the city to see the sunset.
- 20 Parque da Água Branca, Avenida Francisco Matarazzo, 455 - Barra Funda (near Barra Funda station). This historical park was, in the beginning of the 1900s, a center of agricultural education and trade, and is now a memory of the region's past as an agropecuary area.
- 21 Parque Raposo Tavares, Rua Telmo Coelho Filho, 200 - Raposo Tavares (Near Raposo Tavares road). 7AM-6PM. This park also has an interesting history. Its site formerly was an immense waste dump area, known as Lixão Raposo Tavares. The trees had to be introduced, rather than naturally grow, due to a layer of clay that holds the toxic gases from the former landfill.
- 1 Feira de Artes, Cultura e Lazer da Praça Benedito Calixto (Benedito Flea Market), Praça Benedito Calixto, Pinheiros (13-min walk from Sumaré station). Sa 9AM-7PM. On Saturday, this square is home to one of the most famous and charming fairs in São Paulo. Everything is on offer: antiques, rarities, collections, etc. It’s also a great place to have lunch or a snack, as there are many bars and restaurants—such as the excellent Consulado Mineiro, where the long wait is softened by a delicious lime and cane liquor caipirinha cocktail. In the middle of the square, musicians playing traditional choro music on Brazilian ukuleles keep the crowds entertained.
- 2 SESC Pompéia, R. Clélia, 93 - Perdizes. An important performance hall of the region, offers a varied selection of shows focusing mainly on samba and rock.
- 3 Instituto Goethe, Rua Lisboa, 974, ☏ . Jardim Paulista.
- Centro de Cultura Judaica, Rua Oscar Freire, 2, ☏ . Cultural presentations and activities promoted by the Jewish community.
- Centro Brasileiro Britânico, Rua Ferreira de Araújo, 741, ☏ . Pinheiros. Exhibits, library and British consulate. Brazilian British Center.
- Feira da Vila Madalena, between ruas Fradique Coutinho and Wizard, Pinheiros. This yearly event happens around August in the charming neighborhood of Vila Madalena, in Pinheiros. It is an open market with cultural presentations, art and handcraft shops.
- Anima Mundi (International Festival of Animation of Brazil), Memorial da América Latina, Barra Funda and other addresses. The largest animation film festival from Latin America happens around July and takes two weeks, one week in São Paulo in Memorial da América Latina and other addresses. Besides showcasing short and long animation films from the entire world, animation workshops for adults and children are available.
- 4 Estádio do Morumbi (Estádio Cícero Pompeu de Toledo), Praça Roberto Gomes Pedrosa - Morumbi. The largest stadium of the city and the 3d largest of Brazil, with capacity for 72,809 people. Home to São Paulo Futebol Clube.
- 5 Arena Palestra Itália (Parque Antarctica), Rua Turiassu - Barra Funda (Between Barra Funda and Água Branca stations). The oldest football stadium of São Paulo is home to Sociedade Esportiva Palmeiras, a football club closely associated with the Italian community, as is the district of Barra Funda.
- 6 Jockey Club de São Paulo (Hipódromo Cidade Jardim), Av. Lineu de Paula Machado, 1263 - Morumbi. São Paulo's horse racing and social club dates from 1875. The club is also home to a sports center, a spa, two bars, social areas and a space for large musical events. Definitely one place to go if you want to socialize with the richest inhabitants and visitors of the city.
- Planet Bowling, Praça Jácomo Zanella, 187 - Lapa (9-min walk from Lapa station), ☏ . Tu-Su 2PM until the last client. Bowling with 26 tracks, and a "dance club" atmosphere during the night. Gets quite crowded on weekends. R$50-74 track.
- Playcenter, Rua José Gomes Falcão, 20 - Barra Funda (Near station Barra Funda). The largest and most famous theme park of the city, with 44 attractions. The rollercoaster has a max. speed of 55 km/h. August is the month of Noites do Terror, where the park gains Halloween-like decoration and attractions.
- 1 University of São Paulo (USP), Butantã. The largest academic institution in the country, and third largest in Latin America. It is a state university, and undergraduate as well as graduate courses are free of charge for those who pass its competitive entrance exams. USP's main campus is Cidade Universitaria, in Butantã, and it is open for both students and non-students. It is a nice place to ride a bicycle, jog or just lay down on the grass, especially in the summer. The university may be reached by Cidade Universitária train station, or by buses going from Butantã station.
- 2 Pontifical Catholic University of São Paulo, Rua Monte Alegre, 984, ☏ . Perdizes. Founded in 1946, PUC-SP is highly regarded in Latin America for its departments of human sciences. The main campus is in the neighbourhood of Perdizes and also open for both students and non-students, but it has a very small area and almost no places for sport activities. However, it's notable for the impressive neoclassical architecture, which is part of the Historical Heritage of the city. The nearest Metro stations are Palmeiras-Barra Funda, in the Red Line, and Sumaré, in the Green Line.
- 1 Shopping Eldorado, Avenida Rebouças, 3970 - Pinheiros (next to Hebraica-Rebouças station and Ponte Eusébio Matoso). A large shopping mall in Pinheiros, close to Butantã. Has a diversified public, but middle to high class consumers, as well as workers from the area during lunch time, are predominant. Easily accessible by public transport, either by the train station or the many buses that pass through Av. Rebouças. One of the main attractions of this mall is the enormous food court, the oldest of São Paulo, with restaurants from all types and price ranges. Outside the food court there are also restaurants, such as Outback and Apple Bees. The shopping also has a theatre, a gym, and a services center where you can wash clothes, copy keys, or fix almost anything. About 328 shops.
- 2 Iguatemi São Paulo, Avenida Brigadeiro Faria Lima, 2232 - Jardim Paulistano (15-min walk from Cidade Jardim station). The oldest shopping mall of São Paulo, and the second oldest of Brazil. Focused on wealthy consumers. Even if the expensive shops do not interest you, its nicely decorated interior is worth a visit. About 330 shops.
- 3 Shopping Cidade Jardim, Avenida Magalhães de Castro, 12000 - Morumbi. The luxurious 4-tower shopping mall is next to Favela Jardim Panorama, a prime portrait of the Brazil's social inequality. Consists of shops (most ultra-expensive, like Louis Vuitton, Giorgio Armani and Daslu), the largest spa of the city, a gym, and also hosts expositions. The mall however has very limited eating options, and it is very difficult to access without car or taxi. The gardens and the bookshop - Livraria da Vila - are very pleasant environments, through. About 120 shops.
- 4 Shopping JK Iguatemi, Av. Presidente Juscelino Kubitschek, 2041 - Vila Olímpia (Near Vila Olímpia station). The beautiful shopping mall will be part of a large mixed corporate and entertainment complex. It is aimed at wealthy consumers and contains several designer stores, like Goyard, Lanvin, Miu Miu, Yves Saint Laurent, and Topshop. For those who aren't that wealthy, the mall offers an excellent Livaria da Vila bookshop, a good range of restaurants for diverse budgets, and a terrace that provides a nice view of the Chácara Itaim neighborhood. Unlike Shopping Cidade Jardim, it is easily accessible by public transport - it is near the Vila Olímpia CPTM station.
- 5 Bourbon Shopping São Paulo (Bourbon Shopping Pompéia), Rua Turiassu, 2100, Perdizes (Near Água Branca station). Another shopping mall focused on upper-middle class and wealthy consumers. Contains Teatro Bradesco, with capacity for 1,500 people. About 210 shops.
- 6 Shopping Vila Olímpia, Rua Olimpíadas, 360 - Vila Olímpia (Near Vila Olímpia station). The "other" shopping mall of Vila Olímpia, quite near the JK Iguatemi, is more aimed at middle class consumers and corporate employees. The food court in the upper floor has a good selection of restaurants. About 191 shops.
- 7 Shopping Villa-Lobos, Avenida das Nações Unidas, 4777, Alto de Pinheiros (between Cidade Universitária and Villa-Lobos stations). Shopping mall with about 216 shops.
- 8 Shopping West Plaza, Praça Sousa Aranha, 408, Barra Funda (near Barra Funda station). Formerly the favorite place of the wealthy in the region, it has now a more general profile, as the former have switched to Bourbon and Higienópolis. About 218 shops.
- 9 Shopping Continental, Av. Leão Machado 100, Jaguaré. Located in the extreme west, in the border with the municipality of Osasco. A shopping mall with general profile, catering to people from Osasco, Jaguaré and working class districts like Rio Pequeno. About 220 shops.
- 10 Shopping Butantã, Av. Prof. Francisco Morato, 2718, Vila Sônia. Shopping mall owned by the French group Carrefour.
- 11 Shopping Raposo, Rod. Raposo Tavares, Km 14,5, Raposo Tavares. Shopping mall with about 150 shops.
- 12 Rua Oscar Freire, Jardim Paulista (12-min walk from stations Clínicas or Consolação). mon-sat. The area around the crossing between this street and R. Augusta is the city's most well-known luxury shopping area, with shops such as Diesel, Tommy Hilfiger, Christian Dior and Louis Vuitton. There is also a large Havaianas shop, where you can find some hard-to-find models. If you don't want to walk to or from the metro station, there is a bus stop in the crossing of the street with Av. Rebouças, where many buses to Downtown and Av. Paulista pass.
- 13 Pinheiros. Rua Teodoro Sampaio, the section between Avenida Henrique Schaumann and Hospital das Clínicas, is the place to buy, sell or trade musical instruments. From Avenida Henrique Schaumman down, the street is a magnet for shops selling new furniture, much of which is made to order. If you prefer to invest in items with a certain age, go to the parallel street, Cardeal Arcoverde, that has many antique shops.
- Avenida Europa, Jardim Paulista. If you enjoy seeing expensive cars like Ferraris, Bentleys and Lamborguinis, there is no better place than this street in one of the richest neighborhoods of the city, containing many car shops of luxe brands. Buying them is another story, however, as Brazil is one of the most expensive places in the world to buy a car.
- CEAGESP (Companhia de Entrepostos e Armazéns Gerais de São Paulo), Av. Dr. Gastão Vidigal, 1946 - Vila Leopoldina (Near Ceasa station). The CEAGESP, a state-owned warehouse, hosts a farmers' market three times per week, and a flower market two times per week (see website for detailed schedule). The flower market requires a minimum quantity to be bought, so it is more suited for gardening than simple decoration.
- Villa Daslu, Avenida Chedid Jafet, 131, ☏ . Itaim Bibi. Luxury department store selling from Valentino dresses to helicopters.
- 14 Livraria da Vila, Rua Fradique Coutinho, 915 - Pinheiros, ☏ . M-F 9AM-10PM, Sa 10AM-8PM, Su 11AM-8PM. This five-story bookshoop, worth a long visit, is nestled in between two bars. Pick up a few titles and enjoy a delicious coffee at the back of the store. You won’t even notice time flying by.
- Granado, Rua Haddock Lobo, 1353, ☏ . Shop of Brazil's most famous manufacturer of natural cosmetics and pharmaceutical products.
- Bocaccio, Rua Amélia Correia Fontes Guimarães, 37 - Morumbi, ☏ . Lunch Tu-F noon-3PM; Dinner Tu-F 6PM-11PM, Sa noon-11PM, Su noon-5PM. With three dining environments, this restaurant offers many traditional Italian recipes alongside some Brazilian fusion dishes, such as gnocci made from mandioquinha instead of potatoes. R$35-45.
- Camelo Pizzaria, Rua Marechal Hastinphilo Moura, 73 - Vila Sônia, ☏ . Su-Th 6PM-12:30AM, F-Sa 6PM-1AM. A traditional Paulistano pizzeria. R$25-40.
- Fazenda Churrascada, Avenida Morumbi, 5594 - Morumbi, ☏ . Tu-Th noon-3PM and 7PM-midnight, F noon-3PM and 7PM-1AM, Sa noon-5PM and 8PM-1AM, Su noon-5PM. Traditional São Paulo food, served in a historical manor house that once belonged to the tea farm that gave origin to Morumbi. R$50-75.
- Sushi Den, Rua Doutor Luís Migliano, 1110 - Vila Sônia, ☏ . M-Sa noon-3PM and 7PM-11PM. R$60-90.
Centro de São Paulo
- Mercado Municipal de São Paulo, A must-see for tourists from all over Brazil and other countries, the officially named Municipal Market Paulistano, known by many just as Cantareira or Mercadão is one of the most traditional tourist spots in the city.
- Parigi, Rua Amauri, 275, ☏ . M-Th noon-3PM and 7PM-12:30AM, F noon-4PM and 7PM-1AM, Sa 7PM-1AM, Su noon-5PM. One of São Paulo's most respected fine dining establishments. From R$125.
- Rufino's, Rua Dr. Mario Ferraz, 377, ☏ . M-Th noon-3PM and 7PM-midnight, F noon-4PM and 7PM-1AM, Sa noon-1AM, Su noon-11PM. Seafood. Try the Hungarian Shrimp or Shrimp Mango Chutney. R$90-150.
Jardim Paulista is São Paulo's pearl of gastronomy, with many (if not most) of the best rated restaurants of the city here. Be aware, however, that great quality does not always mean great cost-benefit.
- Pedaço de Pizza, Rua Augusta, 2931 - Jardins, ☏ . M 11AM-8PM, Tu-Su 11AM-5AM. Pizza by the slice. R$15-30.
- Almanara, Rua Oscar Freire, 523, ☏ . Su-Th 11:30AM-11:30PM, F-Sa 11:30AM-12:30AM. Lebanese food since 1950. R$25-30.
- Amsterdam Bistrô Café, Rua Dr. Melo Alves, 506, ☏ . M-Fr noon-11:30PM, Sa noon-5PM. Good for lunch, dessert, or a quick snack. Try their cheesecake with guava sauce. Lunch R$20-30.
- Arábia, Rua Haddock Lobo, 1397, ☏ . Su-Th noon-midnight, F-Sa noon-1AM. Popular Lebanese restaurant. R$50-70.
- Cristallo, Rua Oscar Freire, 914, ☏ . M-F 9:30AM-10PM, Sa-Su 10AM-10PM. Bakery with coffee, sweets, and savory snacks. R$10-20.
- Galeria dos Pães, Rua Estados Unidos, 1645, ☏ . 24 hours. Chic pastry and market which gets very crowded at peak hours.
- Bacio di Latte, Rua Bela Cintra 1829 (corner with Tietê), ☏ . M-W 8AM-11PM, Th-Su 8AM-1AM. Coffee and sweets. Try their alfajores.
- Kayomix, Rua da Consolação, 3215, ☏ . Tu-W 11:30AM-3:30PM and 6PM-4AM, F-Sa 11:30AM-5AM, Sa-Su 11:30AM-4PM. Japanese restaurant with a buffet option. Try their gigantic temaki. R$50-75.
- Lanchonete da Cidade, Alameda Tietê, 110, ☏ . Su-Th noon-1AM, F-Sa noon-3AM. Hamburgers, sandwiches, and draft beer in an art-deco environment. R$25-40.
- Carole Crema, Rua Consolação 3161 (corner with Tietê), ☏ . M-Sa 10:30AM-7PM. Candies, chocolats, eclaires.
- Nagayama, Rua da Consolação, 3397, ☏ . Tu-Sa 7PM-11:30PM. A bit overpriced, but one of the better Japanese restaurants outside of Liberdade. R$50-100.
- D.O.M., Rua Barão de Capanema, 549, ☏ . Owned by award-winning chef Alex Atala, this restaurant offers nouvelle cuisine and has several times been voted the best in South America. R$125+.
- Fasano, Rua Vitorio Fasano, 88, ☏ . M-Sa 7:30PM-1AM. A São Paulo classic in fine dining. From R$150.
- Figueira Rubaiyat, Rua Haddock Lobo, 1738 - Jardins, ☏ . Romantic atmosphere with the main dining room built around a gigantic ficus tree. Try the grilled octopus or fish from the Amazon, and when you're done there is an excellent dessert bar. R$70-120.
- Vento Haragano, Avenida Rebouças, 1001 - Jardim Paulista, ☏ . M-Fr noon-4PM and 6PM-11:45PM, Sa noon-midnight, Su noon-11PM. An old-fashioned Gaucho-style churrasco restaurant. Does not accept reservations. R$80-125.
- Alternativa Casa do Natural, Rua Fradique Coutinho, 910 - Vila Madalena, ☏ . M-Fr 11AM-4PM, Sa-Su 10AM-6PM. A vegetarian restaurant housed along with a lanchonete and an organic vegetable market. R$20-35.
- Maha Mantra, Rua Fradique Coutinho, 766 - Vila Madalena, ☏ . Tu-F 11:30AM-3PM, Sa-Su noon-4PM. Vegetarian Indian buffet.
- Bolinha, Av. Cidade Jardim, 53, ☏ . Tu-Su 11AM-midnight. Offering two types of feijoada plus various a la carte items including fish, meat dishes, pasta, and pizza. If you've never tried feijoada, this is a good place to have your first experience. R$60-80.
- Hideki, Rua dos Pinheiros, 70, ☏ . M-Fr noon-3PM and 7PM-midnight, Sa noon-4PM and 7PM-midnight, Su noon-4PM and 7PM-11PM. Japanese restaurant with a somewhat wider-than-average selection of fish cuts. R$60-90.
- Tanuki, Rua Jericó, 287, ☏ . M-Th noon-3PM and 6:30PM-12AM, F noon-3PM and 7PM-midnight, Sa 1PM-4PM and 7PM-midnight, Su noon-6PM. Japanese food including sushi, teppanyaki, yakisoba, and tempura. $50-75.
- Don Curro, Rua Alves Guimarães, 230, ☏ . Tu-Th noon-midnight, F-Sa noon-12:30AM, Su noon-5PM. This São Paulo classic has been open for over 50 years serving classics of Spanish cuisine, such as paella, belotta, and planch del mariner. Quite possibly the best Spanish restaurant in the city. R$35-50.
The neighborhood of Vila Olímpia, in Itaim Bibi, is São Paulo's most famous clubbing area, and Vila Madalena, in Pinheiros, is the place for die-hard Bohemians. Nightlife is also intense, although a bit more sparse, in the districts of the Lapa subprefecture (like Barra Funda, Lapa and Vila Leopoldina), and now these areas contain some of the best clubs of the city.
Most parties from the students of University of São Paulo happen inside the campus, or in other districts like Pinheiros (especially Vila Madalena) or Barra Funda. Outside the campus, the district of Butantã isn't really an exciting place, although lately there are a growing number of bars.
- Rei da Batidas, Avenida Valdemar Ferreira, 231 - Butantã, ☏ . M-Th 9:30AM-2:30AM, F-Sa 9:30AM-5AM, Su 9:30-2:30AM. Traditional buteco popular with USP students.
- Cabaret, Rua Quintana, 765, ☏ .
- Café de la Musique, Avenida Juscelino Kubitschek, 1400, ☏ . Tu-Sa 8PM-5AM. An rather small but upscale place that attracts the beautiful people of São Paulo, including celebrities at times. Opens early for dinner, and the party starts around midnight, with various types of music depending on the night. Imported bottled beer R$14-16.
- Café Vermont, Rua Pedroso Alvarenga, 1192, ☏ . Gay bar and club.
- Salinas, Rua Quatá, 460, ☏ . People like to get together here with their girlfriends over a piña colada or their other favorite drink.
- Seu Justino Vila Madalena, Rua Harmonia, 77 - Vila Madalena, ☏ . Terrace and fruit tree ambience.
- Bar Balcão, Rua Dr. Melo Alves, 150, ☏ . The crowd is a mix of journaists, PRs and people of the Communications area.
- Devassa, ☏ . Alameda Lorena, 1040. Beerhouse.
- Skye, Avenida Brigadeiro Luís Antônio, 4700, ☏ . Bar of the hype Unique hotel.
- Clash, Rua Barra Funda, 969, ☏ .
- D-Edge, ☏ . Alameda Olga, 170, Barra Funda. Chosen by DJMAG one of the best clubs on earth.
- Flexx, Av. Marquês de São Vicente, 1767 - Barra Funda, ☏ . Rave time. Gay club.
- The Week, Rua Guaicurus, 324, ☏ . Lapa. Probably the most important gay club in the country.
The bizarrely named streets of Vila Madalena, such as Aspicuelta (who was a 16th century Spanish priest), Girassol (the sunflower) and Purpurina (glitter), are home to bars with something for everyone: there are “classic” pubs with Portuguese tiles on the walls serving super-chilled draught beer and bean soup, such as the Filial; some are homes away from home for journalists and soccer fans, such as São Cristóvão; and for the GLS (Gays, Lesbians and Sympathizers) crowds, Farol da Vila is a good bet.
Those who are fond of live music have several options, from samba to shows by future stars of Brazilian Popular Music—MPB. Even Father Aspicuelta used to have a little glass of wine after mass in some of the bars on “his” street, such as Posto 6 (in honor of Rio de Janeiro), Zé Menino (in honor of the port city of Santos) or Salve Jorge, that gives discounts to clients named Jorge. The search for the perfectly-chilled draught beer might take you to the nearby neighborhood of Lapa, where a happening nightlife scene is beginning to take hold.
- Subastor, Rua Delfina, 163, ☏ . Laid-back, cozy bar.
- Bar do Sacha, Rua Original, 89, ☏ . Bar and grill with a warm environment.
- Boteco da Vila, Rua Mourato Coelho, 1144, ☏ . F 10:30PM-3AM; Sa 2-8PM and 10:30PM-3AM; Su 1-9PM. Enjoy some samba and cachaca in this bar with a retractable roof.
- Bubu Lounge, Rua dos Pinheiros, 791, ☏ . Gay club. Hope that your ears can handle the subwoofers.
- Empanadas, Rua Wisard, 489, ☏ . Bar whose speciality is in its name.
- Happy News Jump Bar, Rua dos Pinheiros, 1275, Pinheiros (Near Faria Lima station). The club, known for its upside ("happy") atmosphere, has two environments: a German-style bar with live shows, and a disco with electronic, black or latin music depending on the day.
- Morrison Rock Bar, Rua Inácio Pereira da Rocha, 362, ☏ . Rock concert venue with 3 levels.
- Pirajá, Avenida Brigadeiro Faria Lima, 64, ☏ . Happy hours and food menu.
- Posto 6, Rua Aspicuelta, 644, ☏ . M-F 4PM-2AM; Sa Su holidays noon-2AM. Cocktails R$20-30, beer R$13-29, sandwiches R$26-32, pizza R$43, mains from R$40
- Salve Jorge, R Aspicuelta, 544, ☏ . Lots of drinks and appetizing food items.
- Vianna, Rua Cristiano Viana, 315, ☏ . Enjoy beer and sandwiches while you watch soccer.
- 1 Hilton São Paulo Morumbi Hotel, Av das Nacoes Unidas, 12901 - Itaim Bibi, ☏ . Located in the CENU business complex towers and attached to the mall, the Hilton São Paulo Morumbi has some nice touches, such as a rooftop pool and many restaurants and lounges.
- Hostel Alice, Rua Harmonia, 1275 - Vila Madalena, ☏ , ✉ email@example.com. A comfortable, clean and safe place near the station. It is surrounded by lovely garden. Food is good.
- Melia Jardim Europa, Rua Joao Cachoeira, 107 - Itaim Bibi, ☏ . Modern accommodations.
- PremiumFlats.com, Rua Indiana, 1165 - Itaim Bibi, ☏ . PremiumFlats.com is in Brooklin, one of the exclusive area of São Paulo. Modern accommodations with DVD, free Parking, and free internet.
- Ô de Casa Hostel, Rua Inacio Pereira da Rocha, 385 - Pinheiros (Close to Faria Lima Metro Station), ☏ . Check-in: 1PM, check-out: 11AM. A home like hostel with grass in the backyard and its owners at reception. R$35-60.
- Grand Hyatt, Avenida das Nações Unidas, 13, ☏ . 301 - Itaim Bibi.
- Ibis Morumbi, Avenida Roque Petroni Junior, 800, ☏ . Itaim Bibi, Torre 1.
- 2 Paulista Garden Hotel, Alameda Lorena, nº 21 (metro Brigadeiro). Cheap but clean, free wi-fi and 24h reception. No air-conditioning but the rooms do have ceiling fans. R$96/night.
- Hampton Park Residence, Alameda Campinas, nº 1213 (metro Trianon-Masp). Check-in: 2PM, check-out: noon. Nice and clean rooms, rooftop terrace with small swimming pool, breakfast included, air-condition and cable television in rooms.
- Emiliano, Rua Oscar Freire, 384, ☏ .
- Fasano, Rua Vittorio Fasano, 88, ☏ .
- Unique, Av. Brigadeiro Luís Antônio, 4700, ☏ .
Crime statistics in the West are more or less in the average of the city. However, richer neighborhoods like Pinheiros report a high number of kidnappings, specially express kidnappings - about 50% of express kidnappings in São Paulo happen in the West (see  [formerly dead link]).
There is no need to panic, though. The usual victims of these crimes are not visitors but Paulistanos, who like to show their expensive cars and possessions when going out. Do not imitate them. If you need a car to go clubbing or dining in the region, consider to take a cab or ride with a group of friends.
Acting like a reckless tourist, however, will bring you problems no matter if you look rich or not. Don't go to run-down areas or favelas, not even during the day. Don't walk during the night if you don't see people on the streets. Keep the number of a radio-taxi at hand.
Students of University of São Paulo are often robbed near the pedestrian-only entrances, even during the day. If you are going to the University, there is no need to avoid these entrances, but if you are using them, don't bring valuable items like laptops, tablets or your passport.