Tour Locations | Downtown São Paulo

  • LOCATION 14 | Downtown São Paulo

    R. Alvares Penteado

    You're now going to turn right onto R. Alvares Penteado, but first stop for a moment at the corner.

    Have a look to your right at the neoclassic building on the corner.

    This impressive edifice is the Centro Cultural Banco do Brasil building. It's an example of some of the stunning architecture found in downtown Sao Paulo. It was built in 1901, and today is home to some popular art exhibitions.

    Now, make sure you’ve turned right into R. Alvares Penteado, and continue walking, keeping the Banco do Brasil building on your right.

    To give you an idea of just how slow São Paulo's growth was, it was only elevated to city status in 1711. That is some 157 years after it was founded. Also, São Paulo didn't have its first University until 1827, with the opening of the San Francisco law school. This University was very important to the city, because it attracted a flow of intellects and thinkers here.

    Less than a century later, the state of São Paulo began welcoming Japanese settlers - and the majority of these came over to work on coffee plantations. Today Brazil is home to the largest community of Japanese residents outside of Japan, and most of these can be found living in Sao Paulo. In fact, one of the most popular tourist areas in the city is Liberdade, also known as the Japanese district. This is not too far from where you are now, and definitely worth a visit if time allows!

    The first million inhabitants in the city were only recorded in 1928, some 374 years after São Paulo was founded. Of course, nowadays the city is home to more than 11 million residents, giving you an idea of just how much the population has boomed in the last 100 years or so!

    Keep going.

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