First of all it helps to know that Sambadrome is Sambódromo in Portuguese. The Sambadrome Marques de Sapucai is the venue where the annual Rio de Janeiro samba parade is held during carnival week. Located in downtown Rio it is supposed to be close to the area where the Brazilian-African dance form originated generations ago.
The Sambadrome has been going under some major reconstruction. Four new concrete buildings were raised, which now host four new sectors with all types of seats: grandstands, open boxes or frisas, and the luxury suites. The new Sambadrome should be ready by mid December 2011 in time for the technical rehearsals for the Rio Carnival.
The venue’s official name today is Passarela do Samba Darcy Ribeiro and it was constructed at what was formerly the Marques de Sapucai Street and is thus often called by that same as well. The end of the samba runway, where all the participants gather after their parade and where the results are announced on Ash Wednesday is known as Apotheosis Square.
The Sambadrome as it is popularly known was created when it became apparent that the Rio carnival had grown to such proportions that the provisional arrangements of the previous years would no longer be sufficient. Oscar Niemeyer was thus commissioned to design a structure that would be able to host the event in all its glory. It was constructed in 1984 in a record 110 days with the sole purpose of having a world class venue in which to hold the annual parade in which numerous samba schools of Rio participate. The acoustics of the stadium were also designed keeping the needs of the schools’ percussion bands in mind. The venue has a 700 m long samba parade runway, which is flanked on both sides by a number of independent sectors, comprised of concrete grand stands and viewing boxes, as well as restrooms and a souvenir shop.
The Sambodrome can accommodate over 100,000 spectators and sees well over 82,000 participants during the annual parade, with each samba school comprising of around 2500 – 4000 performers. The Sambadrome is divided into concrete structures known as sectors, with even numbered sectors on one side and odd numbered sectors on the other.
Carnival tickets are sold for unmarked and marked seats, which are located in the concrete grandstands, boxes and luxury suites. Carnival Tickets to the 2014 Rio Carnival parade can be bought online right here.
Grandstands or Bleachers are Rio Carnival Tickets are general admission tickets offering great samba parade views from the elevated concrete steps of the Sambadrome. Grandstands tickets are not numbered except for Sector 9, which is the tourist sector. There are no actual chairs but bleachers made of big concrete steps.
Allocated chairs are assigned seats, available only on Sectors 12 and 13 of the Rio Sambadrome and are the most affordable Rio carnival tickets at the Sambadrome. They are located at the very end of the samba parade, close to the Apotheosis. The chairs are organized in an open-air theatre with the long lines of chairs facing the parade. Allocated chairs are ideal for those who want to secure a chair without paying the open box seat prices.
Front boxes or Frisas as they are known at the Rio Carnival Sambadrome, are the best, tickets you can get to watch the samba parades. The Open Box Sectors are located at the very floor level, as close to the runaway as it gets, in four rows of boxes, from A TO D. Each box sits six people in numbered chairs. A little coffee table completes the box space.
Luxury Suites, Camarotes or covered boxes tickets are available all along the Rio Sambadrome, from Sector 2 to Sector 11. These are considered to be the most desired tickets, offering a great view of the show from a private suite with first-class waiter service, buffet and open bar. Luxury Suites may not be your best bet: because the suite window is not big enough for the 12 people per window to watch the show at the same time, we only recommend it for closed groups of 12, 24 or 36 people. Open Boxes might be a better option if you don't want to share the tiny space on the window with other guests.
Many of the international artists that come to Rio perform at the Sambadrome. In the past, performances have included James Blunt, Guns n Roses, Carlos Santana, Robbie Williams, Bob Dylan, Radiohead, Jonas Brothers, Avril Lavigne and Radiohead to name just a few. In 2010 the Black Eyed Peas performed here as well. This will also be the venue for the athletics marathon and archery events of the 2016 Summer Olympics.
Our Rio Carnival Help Desk is willing to customize a Rio de Janeiro Carnival package for you and your party as well as giving you some very handy tips on costumes, and of course, the Party Planner.
Considering a group of six or more people to Rio de Janeiro for Carnival ? Our Carnival Group Desk will be glad to design your itinerary. Benefit from our Travel Group Rates with major airlines carriers as well as all the hotel and service arrangements while in Brazil.