Santa Teresa history merges with the history of the Rio de Janeiro city. Situated at the “Morro do Desterro”, it served as an escape route for slaves in the XVIII century, through the dense forest that covered the hill – the place has this name ´cause Antonio Gomes do Desterro was the first inhabitant of the region.
In 1723, after the Aqueduto da Carioca construction (Arcos da Lapa), bringing water to the neighborhood, the convent of Santa Teresa – Ordem das Carmelitas – was settled at the foot of the hill. The Convent presence in the neighborhood was so striking that the region became to be called Santa Teresa.
The aqueduct also intensified the occupation of the neighborhood – many wealthy families moved to the region, looking for a cooler temperature of the hill and escape from the heat of the lower parts of the city.
Santa Teresa is the unique neighborhood of the city that still has electrical trams. The trams, which began to move in the neighborhood in 1877, are one of its most striking particulars and a symbol of Santa Teresa – at the same time, a transport and a touristic attraction.
Santa Teresa is a special neighborhood. Very quiet, it seems like a little city from the country town. At the same time, it´s a bohemian place. There are many bars and restaurants where have samba circles and musical shows. The great gastronomy is also a particular of Santa Teresa.
It´s a place of art – many artists and artisans have their studios and workshops in Santa Teresa.
Moreover, the bohemia and the arts are also part of the history of the neighborhood. Raimundo de Castro Maia and Laurinda Santos Lobo lived in Santa Teresa. Both were supporters of the art: artists funded, used to collect works of art and promoted soirees.
The house where Raimundo de Castro Maia lived is the “Chácara do Céu Museum” nowadays; and the Laurinda Santos Lobo house today is the “Parque das Ruínas” – both touristic attractions of the neighborhood which deserve to be visited.
Santa Teresa is an art, music, lounge, culture and security neighborhood.
It´s common to see musicians, photographers and plastic artists gathered in the bars of Santa – how the place is called by close people.
The atmosphere seems like a country town. In Santa, people usually know the baker´s name, make new friendship with neighbors and chat to the newsagent about the news.
Besides all of this, Santa Teresa is a very beautiful quiet place. A woody neighborhood, with such a very interesting architecture – has different kind of houses from XX century.
And from Santa Teresa, you can see the most beautiful landscapes of the Rio´s city. From different angles, you can shot a great picture.