Hotel Glória becomes a residential building with apartments starting at R$1.9 million


Fidel Castro, Yuri Gagarin, Albert Einstein and Marilyn Monroe were some of the international names who saw the view of Rio de Janeiro through the windows of the iconic Hotel Glória.

Facing Guanabara Bay and a sidewalk neighbor of Palácio do Catete, seat of the Presidency of the Republic until Rio de Janeiro ceased to be the federal capital, in 1960, the hotel witnessed the euphoria and crises experienced by Rio in the last hundred years. —and he himself was a victim of one of them.

Closed since 2008 due to unsuccessful negotiations, a new phase of the building’s history was launched this Thursday (10), now as a luxury residential development.

Glória Residencial Rio is led by Banco Opportunity, which bought the building, and by SIG Engenharia. Delivery is scheduled for 2026.

With decor designed by Patrícia Anastassiadis and landscaping by Burle Marx’s office, Glória Residencial has plans for 266 apartments between 77 m² and 311 m², with up to four suites.

Traditional Hotel Gloria before and after


The square meter costs from R$ 25 thousand, which means that the smallest apartment costs R$ 1.92 million.

The land cost R$ 100 million and the works are budgeted at R$ 250 million. With decoration and other expenses, the total value of the investment is R$ 400 million.

“The project has to adapt to the new conditions. At the time the hotel was operating, there was not so much demand for air conditioning, kitchen equipment such as microwaves, these facilities were not foreseen. The building is old, so the challenges of structure were great”, said Jorge Mauricy, director of SIG Engenharia.

The facade of the hotel, preserved by law, will be maintained, with slight alterations. The inscription Hotel Glória, for example, will be replaced by Glória Residencial.

“We needed the support of the agencies to make the conversion to the residential one. The conversations with the city hall and Iphan [Instituto do Patrimônio Histórico e Artístico Nacional] for a historical heritage not to be abandoned was fundamental”, stated Cristina Gravina, from the Opportunity Group.

Hotel Glória was originally designed by French architect Joseph Gire, who designed the Copacabana Palace and the Palácio das Laranjeiras. Competitor of Copa Palace in glamour, Glória became famous for its luxurious Carnival costume contests and for a shack starring the American actress Ava Gardner (1922-1990).

While passing through Brazil in the 1950s, Gardner broke furniture and objects in the room, argued with managers and was expelled by the hotel’s owner, Eduardo Tapajós. After the fight, she went to stay at the Copacabana Palace. Tapajós managed the enterprise until 1998, when he disappeared in a helicopter accident.

The Tapajós family continued to run the hotel until 2008, the year in which, still in operation, it was sold for R$80 million to businessman Eike Batista. The former billionaire promised to turn it into a six-star hotel by the 2014 World Cup, but the work had stalled the year before — as had many unfulfilled promises in pre-World Cup Rio.

Since then, the hotel has passed through several hands. In 2014, the REX group, the real estate arm of Eike’s EBX Group, sold the hotel to the Swiss fund Acron AG for BRL 225 million, with the desire to renovate it by the 2016 Olympics.

But a delay in legal procedures for completing the sale, such as issuing certificates, made the Swiss fund pull out of the deal in 2016.

In the same year, the hotel was sold to Mubadala, Abu Dhabi’s sovereign wealth fund, as part of a deal with Eike’s group. Mubadala had made a contribution of US$ 2 billion to EBX in 2012. After the demise of X companies, the fund converted Eike’s stake into debt and, thus, in 2016, received the hotel as part of the payment with other assets.

The last passing of the baton came in 2020, when real estate investment fund Opportunity acquired the hotel with the promise of transforming it into a residential building.

Part of those interested in acquiring apartments in the new building are agribusiness entrepreneurs. “There is a great tendency for agribusiness to come here. We have plans to announce Glória in Cuiabá, Goiás and Paraná”, said Gravina.

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