International: People and Places - Brazil

Rio de Janeiro played host to the Destination Brazil Showcase event last month from 8-10 April. Embratur, Brazil's tourist authority, arranged post-event tours to discover the South American destination, while Hunt & Palmer Marketing Services co-ordinated the travel arrangements for the 17 UK buyers.

The UK party flew from Heathrow with Varig and transferred to the host hotels - the JW Marriott Rio de Janeiro, the Hotel Intercontinental Rio and the Sheraton Rio Hotels & Towers. A city tour, taking in the sights of Rio and the Corcovado Mountain, kicked off the itinerary. In the evening, the group sampled Brazil's famed caipirinhas in the city hall at a function hosted by the mayor, while mingling with local ground agents.

The two-day workshop, opened by the Brazil's tourism minister, enabled buyers to meet DMCs, hotels, resorts, airlines and regional convention bureaux at the Marina da Gloria, while lunches were held at the Museum of Modern Art and the Churrascaria Porcao Rio. Samba dancers stole the show at the farewell party, held at sunset on Sugar Loaf Mountain.

Indeprod event manager Jane Pritchard attended the event to learn more about South America as an incentive destination. "The event organisers arranged a post-event trip to Iguassu Falls for me at short notice," she said. "I was really impressed with how quickly they made the arrangements.

The helicopter ride over the falls was definitely my personal highlight."

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