Becoming a Paulistano (a person living in São Paulo) is more than a just a trend: the city has witnessed massive waves of immigration over the past century, insofar that Italians make up the largest ethnic group of the city (approx. 6,000,000 inhabitants). And Paulistanos are also of Portuguese, German, Korean, Japanese and Arab descent.
This leads to a population of 19,000,000 people, often stuck in amazing traffic: up to 112 miles on an average on a Friday evening.
It is a city of contrasts: although 26 billionaires live there, São Paulo still remains the Latin-American city with the highest number of people living in favelas. Moreover, favelas are not necessary located in the outskirts of the city, nor the richest people are confined in the centre.
This peculiar situation leads to one of the main issues of the city: safety.
It is recommended that, once in São Paulo, you make sure to dress down in public places, lock your car doors even while driving, and never ever try to resist a thief.
Best expat neighbourhoods.
Mostly residential, with lots of green spaces, Brooklin is especially popular within the German community. Be sure to avoid the Agua Espraida area, too close to the Buraco Quente favela.
Very popular among foreigners, the area surrounding the park of Ibirapuera has the advantages of its proximity to the largest shopping centre of the city and Congonhas airport, as well as to the office area of Itaim.
Quiet streets, a good commercial infrastructure and safety are the main appeals of this small neighbourhood.
This is the bohemian neighbourhood, where streets have names like Simpatia and Harmonia. Relatively safe, it’s the perfect choice for those who also enjoy a bit of nightlife.
All and all, São Paulo is a city of opportunities and if you are really thinking of relocating there, well: “Boa vida”.