Two years ago, my partner surprised me with a trip to Brazil for our 20th anniversary, which was one year away at that time. As the trip got closer, we decided to look for a legitimate private tourism service. We wanted someone local, preferably gay, with the knowledge of how to navigate the intense party scene of ‘Carnival in Rio’ tourism, sightseeing, and gay nightlife during our three weeks in Iguazu Falls and Rio de Janeiro.
My search for such a tour guide led me to Instagram, where I got discouraged after reaching out to a few to no avail. Finally, after some let-downs, two actual prospects emerged — one of them was a stunning man named Kiko Riaze from Rio.
Seriously, I know everyone always says someone is gorgeous – but Kiko really is.
He’s a big, bearded, mountain of a man with warm welcoming eyes, inviting smile and he’s extremely charming. He also has the body of a God with biceps that look like he could rip trees out of the ground with his bare hands — but he’s a gentle giant.
Unfortunately, due to scheduling conflicts, Kiko could not be our guide during our time in Brazil, but as fate would have it, one day in Rio, a few minutes after Joe and I stepped out of our hotel, a deep voice yelled, “Heeeey Corey!” from a van at a red traffic light. It was Kiko! He had randomly ended up at that exact traffic light at that moment we were standing there and he recognized me from our chats on Instagram.
What a surprise. It was lovely to meet him in person. And yes, he really is that gorgeous in real life.
Now, a year and a half later, Kiko is one of my favorite buddies on IG, and he’s promised to show me around the next time we’re back in Rio. However, in the meantime, for now, I’d like you all to meet him for yourselves in this quick Q&A.
Meet our newest Instinct Hottie of The Week: Kiko Riaze!
Where in Brazil were you born, and what do you love best about your city?
I was born in the city of Rio, but I grew up on a little island called Paquetá, located one hour away from Rio by ferry boat. What I love most in Rio is the eternal summer vibe and the perfect combination of city and nature.
How did you meet your beautiful man, and how long have you been together?
Do you guys remember that hookup website Manhunt? Does it still exist? So, that’s where I met Felipe. We’ve been together for ten years.
You are a published author; tell me a little about your books and what inspires you to write?
I’ve published three gay novels. The first release was in 2008. Back then, gay characters in Brazilian TV shows were ridiculous to make people laugh. Gay literature was basically non-existent. So, I felt encouraged to write gay novels in which lgbtqia+ readers felt real identification with the characters and their problems.
Today the books are available only in the Portuguese language. I hope someday I can make them available in English too. The books can be found on Amazon.
You really are a stunning man. Have you gotten approached to do work in modeling or advertising?
Oh, thanks for that. And yes! I’ve got invitations from professional photographers from Brazil and the US, too, via Instagram, but I have declined. I don’t feel comfortable with the idea of modeling. It’s not my thing. I just take unpretentious selfies to have fun on social media. But who knows. Someday I may change my mind. It would be a different experience.
You’re a professional tour guide in Rio. Do you have one favorite attraction in the city above all others?
Rio is a diverse city. Tourists can find countless cultural activities, beautiful landscapes, famous monuments, and lively nightlife. But for people who want to experience the real carioca soul, I suggest carnival parties. I really love Carnival. It’s the moment of the year when Brazilians forget the struggles and go outdoors full of joy to celebrate life.
What would you tell tourists who are considering traveling to Brazil in the future but aren’t sure?
Don’t be afraid. Just take precautions. Brazil is a big country, and each area has its particularities. Collect information about your destination, read about safety tips, and I’m sure you will have a great trip.
Based on your personal experience, what is life like in Brazil for the LGBTQ community?
Brazil is a country of contrasts. People are very religious, and the current government is very conservative. However, it’s also a country that has progressive laws to ensure gay rights. Gay marriage is legal. Homophobia is considered a crime. Gay couples can adopt children. São Paulo has one of the biggest Pride parades globally, and one of the most famous singers in Brazil right now is a drag queen. There’s still a lot to be done, of course, but I feel that life today is much easier for gay people than it was in previous generations.
Brazil has a reputation for having the hottest men on earth who are often stereotyped and portrayed as beautiful, horse-hung Sex Gods. Having been there, I can’t really argue this perspective, lol —but what do YOU think of that assessment?
Yes, I know the reputation. But I’m sorry to tell you that when it comes to the size of the “Brazilian bananas,” it can be frustrating sometimes. Of course, it’s a myth. There are all types of men everywhere, all over the world. Though, I must admit that the best sex I’ve ever had in my life has been with Brazilians—so far.
Brazilians are very “safados” (slang term for a man who is horny all day, every day), especially the Cariocas (the local term for natives of Rio).
Many people visit Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro — both common tourist cities, but what is another city in Brazil you would recommend to tourists?
In the State of Bahia (northeast of Brazil), Salvador is the first city that comes to mind. It’s a city full of history for being the first capital of Brazil. There are beautiful beaches and monuments. The African heritage is present everywhere, in the traditional African Brazilian religion, the typical clothing, cultural events, and the amazing gastronomy. Salvador’s Carnival is also fantastic. Traveling to Salvador is really a unique experience.
Lastly, other than the ‘Sex God’ stereotype, what is the next biggest misconception people have about Brazil that you would like to clear up?
That all Brazilians like football and speak Spanish. And no, you won’t find anacondas and monkeys in the middle of the streets. Well, sometimes you can find giant anacondas hidden under the Brazilian “sungas” at the beach. Lol!
HaHa! Yes, well I definitely saw a LOT of those anacondas on Ipanema Beach, and those little sungas could hardly contain them. Every where I looked all I heard was Sssssssssssss! Lol! Thank you so much for your time today my friend.
My pleasure Corey, Obrigado!