Go inside the famous Copacabana Palace Hotel

Behind the scenes of the Copacabana Palace: Will Ujek

RIO DE JANEIRO -  You name it, it’s booked up for the 2016 Olympic games, including the world famous Belmond Copacabana Palace Hotel.

Legend has it was here that Barry Manilow came up with the idea for his famous song about the New York night club with the same name.

This swanky place in the sand dates back to 1923, when President Pessoa asked a businessman to construct a Palace in the quiet, deserted, Copacabana beach.

However, beach didn’t stay a secret for long, and neither did the hotel.

The palace quickly became a symbol of Rio that all the rich and famous flocked too.

“The Rolling Stones came here to the hotel 4 times, it’s their home in Rio," said Andrea Natal, the hotel's director. "Nelson Mandella and many other celebrities like Tom Cruise, Giselle Bundchen and Lady Di, it’s a whole list.”

That list includes royal family members, presidents, actors, models and on and on.

Famous people have been staying at the Copacabana Palace dating back to the likes of Gene Kelly and Orson Welles to more recent visits by Justin Beiber and Mylie Cyrus.

Perhaps the most famous visit was that of a film crew shooting scenes for “Flying Down to Rio.”

The flick was the first film to pair Fred Astaire with Ginger Rogers, known globally as the famous Fred and Ginger.

Today, the hotel continues to strive to make every guest feel special with 241 luxurious rooms, amazing views, and services like a florist, spa, and salon right on site.

Add it up and it’s easy to see why the pitch to the International Olympic Committee for Rio as a host city was delivered at this very hotel.

Adding yet another chapter in the already impressive lore of Copacabana Palace.

"It’s all about the history," Natal said. "We are a 93-year-old hotel. We are a landmark. We are so iconic and everyone dreams about coming to stay with us.”

© 2017 WKYC-TV


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