Flamengo is a typically upper middle class residential neighborhood, with many luxury apartments that offer magnificent views, especially along the Praia do Flamengo and Avenida Rui Barbosa.
Flamengo Park is the highlight of the neighborhood. With a large area created from a landfill, it offers paths for running, biking and skating, basketball courts, as well as views of Sugarloaf Mountain, the Glória Marina and access to the beach. However, the waters of Flamengo Beach are not considered clean for swimming. So, the shore is used for sports activities like beach volley and frescobol, and for sunbathing while enjoying fresh coconut water.
Commerce and services grew in Flamengo, especially with the opening of the subway in the region, in 1979, consolidating Largo do Machado and its surrounding area as one of the sub-centers of Rio. In the area of culture, the neighborhood is home to the Carmen Miranda Museum, the Oi Futuro and SESC Art Institutes, with a variety of exhibitions.
The area surrounding Praça José de Alencar has attracted private investment, creating a bustling nightlife area. Some old favorite establishments like Café Lamas and Brazilian steakhouse Majórica are also gaining more visibility. Bars, restaurants and small stores along Senador Vergueiro and Marquês de Abrantes streets attract a diverse crowd.
Flamengo also suffered with the deterioration caused by the transformations in Rio during the second half of the 20th century. Urban decay began, and safety declined with the growth of the Morro Azul favela.
The architecture of Flamengo is quite varied. The refined esthetic standard of the buildings reveals a French influence. The first high-rises were built in the 1940s. Some classic examples stand out, like Colégio Amaro Cavalcanti, with its neoclassical architecture, and the Castelinho (Little Castle) of Flamengo, an eclectic building with Italian influence.
Speculators in the real estate market turned their eye to this neighborhood due to its proximity to the Center, beauty and considerable safety. A variety of projects were implemented over the years, making this neighborhood a good investment. The difference in prices in the real estate is noteworthy. There are studio apartments that sell for 80 thousand reais and luxury flats with prices exceeding 2 million reais.