Sometimes life brings us to the strangest direction. This is what happened to Bob Nadkarni, an English artist and film producer who decided to leave London, almost 40 years ago, and heading to Rio de Janeiro. Bob is the owner and lead mind of The Maze Inn, or simply “The Maze”, one of the most popular Jazz Club in Tavares Bastos, near Catete, and an unconventional Gaudi-esque bed & breakfast.
Why is it so special? Because it is located in a Favela where Bob has decided and managed to live after a few verbal confrontations with drug dealers in the area, who have come to threaten him with a gun. Bob was able to eliminate all crime from the district and continues to educate young people to persuade them not to enter a life on the streets and fighting strongly the use of drugs. His house is, in fact, full of signs in an artistic way shouting “No Drugs”!
Today The Maze Inn is one of the most appreciated accommodations in Rio by globetrotters. It offers suites with a typical English touch, a full breakfast and one of the most beautiful views of the city with the Guanabara Bay, Flamengo Beach and Sugarloaf just ahead. Each room has a double bed and private bathroom. All guests have free access to kitchen, deck and terrace of the house.
The guest house is a maze of staircases itself; curved walls, rooms and terraces, built entirely by the owners inspired by the typical mountains around Rio de Janeiro, the Morros. Everything around smells of art and music, including Bob’s paintings. But the Maze is even more. Every first Friday of the month it stages of jazz concerts that are universally recognised as some of the best jazz sessions around the world. Not just Cariocas looking forward to the event, but also many travellers can’t wait for the special monthly event of the Casa do Bobby. Thanks to Bob’s constant work, the community of Tavares Bastos has also gained international notoriety as a location for film productions and video clips of the singer Snoop Dogg.
Over the years, The Maze developed into a multi-faceted cultural centre with Live Jazz events, cutting-edge Brazilian music shows, a permanent art exhibition, and architecture described as ‘Unique & Original’ by National Geographic. It’s also the only place you can get original Indian style curry in Rio.