Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Hotel, motel, Holiday Inn

It's been a while since I've posted I know, family reunions, birthdays and Carnaval! But I've loved reading all the comments from my last post. 

But now that things have calmed down I'd like to talk about sex, not like the song, but more in a cultural context.

In Maringa, and in most of Brazil, motels are a common site. But be warned, these are not the sleazy, water-bed, shame-inducing kind. The kind that would seal your reputation as a floozy and make others think that you are either a prostitute or an adulterer.

Motels in Brazil are stylish - yes, that's right stylish, modern establishments that offer comfortable settings for couples to relax and enjoy, er, special time together.

It's normal here for children to live with their parents until they get married (I know!), so when they are in the courting stage, couples need a little privacy, and this is where the motels come in. As well as offering hourly rates, you can also reserve a room for the whole night and get a room service breakfast.

On my first visit to a motel here, I was apprehensive, I didn't want anyone to know where we were going. For me, it still carried the negative connotations from my culture. My husband thought it was hilarious that I made this association and explained to me that motels over here are different.

From the outside all motels are the same, they look like huge garages. When you drive up, the electric door opens, and then closes behind you. A voice comes over the PA system and you choose your room, which you then drive round to and guess what inside the motel looks like, lots of garages! You pull up and drive in, the room itself is entered through a side door from the garage. 
Most of the rooms seem to be pretty standard, containing a jacuzzi, lcd tv with plenty of channels to get you in the mood; the stereo also has several well-thought out soundtracks if you like accompaniment. 

The spaceship-themed bed


The shower - big enough for two!

The serving hatch that they push breakfast through - they buzz first of course!

I love the fact that this often conservative, sometimes god-fearing society indulges this side of its charater which offers any couple a little privacy and intimacy in a dedicated environment. 

If you are ever in Brazil with your loved one, I thoroughly recommend visiting a Brazilian Motel.