The Casa Franca-Brasil was designed by the famous French architect Grandjean de Montigny, and is the finest example of neoclassical style in Rio de Janeiro.
The tour continues to the Marechal Floriano Square, also known as Cinelandia. This square concentrates the best of late 18th century French style architecture in Rio de Janeiro: the Municipal Theatre, a scaled-down of the Paris Opera; the Fine Arts Museum; the National Library (reputed worldwide for the copies of Gutemberg’s bible and other first editions dating back to 1500 – brought to Brazil by the Imperial Family of Portugal when they moved to Brazil fleeing Napoleon’s threat).
Confeitaria (Bakery) Colombo preserves the elegance of a bygone era. The Belle Époque tea room opened its doors in 1894 and immediately attracted Rio’s high society and intellectuals, and became the rendez-vous place of choice. Confeitaria Colombo is a welcomed surprise …Its art nouveau elegance is as vibrant as it was a century ago. The café serves full meals as well as alcohol, but its greatest treat is the wide selection of desserts: the Brazilians seem to have inherited the Portuguese love of pastries.