HISTORICAL AND GEOGRAPHICAL INFORMATION

 

Engenheiro Passos belongs to Resende County and is located in the Paraíba Valley, on the slopes of Mantiqueira, in the southwestern part of Rio de Janeiro State. It is 475 meters above sea level and quite close to the São Paulo and Minas Gerais state lines..

With 4000 habitants, part urban part rural, this bucolic little town still keeps the charm of its golden age, the era of the Coffee Barons. After the decline of the coffee cycle, several local farms have been adapted or renewed to become comfortable guest ranches and modern hotels. Business is nowadays slow and life lazy and idle.

The main activities are closely related to nature: Tourism, reforestation (eucalyptus, mainly), cattle raising, dairy farming and growing of small crops.

The landscape features soft hills and meadows, green pastures of large farms, small vegetable gardens, some sugar cane plantations and the stunning beauty of the Itatiaia Massif up and above the horizon, majestically pointing to the sky.

We belong in this scenery. The hotel was named after Admiral José de Siqueira Villa-Forte who bought the farm from the former owner, his father-in-law. He thus established there his residence by the beginning of the last century. Together with his wife Dalila Junqueira Villa-Forte, started welcoming guests as a hotel in 1918. They had twelve children; eight of them reached adulthood. Most are now deceased. But since the times of the Admiral up to this day, the hotel administration and catering have been in the hands of the family or their descendants.

     
   
 

   old photos

 

 




     
   
 

 

 



Fervor for life is cultivated at Villa-Forte. Several members of the family met among the guests their "other half", their lifetime partners. Many love stories had their happy start here. Villa-Forte seems to have a long history of casting spells and warming hearts.

 




     
   
 
 

You may click on any picture to enlarge

 
 




    
       

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