You'll feel right at home at this small and charming pousada in Salvador's desirable Farol da Barra district, less than a 5-minute walk from the beach. Cafés, bars, and shops are also within a short walk. A former family residence, the white-stucco Pousada Estrela do Mar stands amid lush tropical gardens on a tree-shaded street-perfect for a relaxing stroll. You could spend a day-or evening-at beautiful Farol da Barra Beach, with its ocean surf and famous lighthouse. For calmer waters, head to Porto da Barra Beach on the Bay of All Saints, just a half-mile (800 meters) from Pousada Estrela do Mar. Linger at the beach to enjoy the gorgeous sunsets over the bay.
For a change of pace, visit Pelourinho, Salvador's famous historical district. About 2.8 miles (4.5 kilometers) from the Pousada, Pelourinho is a fascinating blend of colonial architecture, Afro-Brazilian music and dance, artisan shops, and Bahian cafés. Here, too, you'll find Igreja Sao Francisco, a Baroque church with a magnificent gilded interior. The pousada's multilingual staff will be happy to provide taxi and tour assistance, as well as insiders' tips on neighborhood restaurants. Visiting during Carnival? When you stay at Pousada Estrela do Mar, you'll be about a 5-minute walk from all the fun and excitement.
Guests rave about the pousada's complimentary breakfast, which includes freshly-squeezed fruit juices, fresh tropical fruits, free-range farm eggs, farmhouse cheese and butter, and breads with homemade jams. The public areas and guestrooms are airy and colorful, accented with Bahian art and decorative tilework. Outside, the fanciful wrought-iron gate, dark-blue shutters, and veranda with hammocks add to the overall charm. Snap a few photos and email them to friends back home via wireless Internet access.
With only 9 rooms, the pousada offers a personal touch. Each room includes a private bathroom, refrigerator, and air conditioning. Most rooms also have a ceiling fan. Room décor is simple, with clean lines and light, refreshing colors. Windows open to views of the garden or street.