Lian Pontes de Carvalho, the infamous Carioca who spent his days on the sunny beaches of Rio, was the inventor of our beautiful game, frescobol. It was during Rio's Belle Époque era of the mid 1940s that Lian would spend his days on the beach and his evenings at the iconic Copacabana Palace.
The name Frescobol was created by the merging of the words fresco and bol. Fresco do final de tarde was a term used to describe the freshness of the end of the afternoon, and bol is short for bola, the Portuguese word for ball.
Frescobol can be played in any open area, although it is best enjoyed as the sun comes down over Morro Dois Irmãos. The players face each other and maintain a dynamic rally, with one player attacking and the other defending. Some games are so exciting that they attract huge crowds on the beach! All over Rio de Janeiro’s beaches, tanned and body-confident Cariocas can be seen playing with their beach bats. The game was recently recognised as a cultural heritage for embodying Rio’s sexy and playful spirit.
The energy emanating from Rio’s beaches led him to create the game of frescobol, which he would play with fellow Cariocas after his early morning jog and água de coco. Cariocas first practiced the game on the stretch of beach known as Posto 2.5, between Copacabana Palace Hotel and Rua Duvivier.
What distinguishes Frescobol from other ball games is that the players are defined as partners rather than opponents; the purpose of the sport is to maintain a rally, with the speed and power increasing with every shot. The noise of rubber balls on the beach is the distinctive sound of Rio.
Our iconic Beach Bats were the first item to be launched in 2009, and were the spark behind a whole range of Luxury Menswear and Beach Accessories, inspired by Rio and its vibrant residents, the Cariocas. We are inspired by the curves of the landscape, the mosaic artwork of Roberto Burle Marx and the samba of Tom Jobim. Our trademark Copacabana and Ipanema prints led to a whole series of designs based on famous Brazilian sidewalks.
Frescobol Carioca has two stores in prime London locations, Marylebone and Soho. Our brand is represented by 250 top stockists around the world in exclusive locations, including Harrods, Le Bon Marché, Colette and Selfridges, and has become the quintessential Brazilian lifestyle brand. We also have ongoing collaborations with iconic venues such as Colette, Eden Rock Hotel and Le Club 55. Through the game of frescobol and everything that evokes ‘Brazilian cool’, from Luxurious Swimming Trunks to Linen Beach Towels and one of a kind handcrafted Accessories, we bring some of that vibrant, tropical Rio spirit to our customers all over the world.
The inspiration behind Frescobol Carioca came about several years ago on a friends’ surfing holiday in the South of France. Two friends decided to spend some time playing frescobol, a game they had discovered on the beaches of Rio. The fun beach vibe was catchy and soon everyone around joined in on the Carioca fun. The excitement around the game set off the idea of bringing the laidback and cool Rio lifestyle to beaches and people all over the world.
Over time, the handles were shortened and painted or varnished to better protect it from water and salt.
Until 1976 the Frescobol was played with peeled tennis balls thereafter imported racketball balls began to be used.
Our wooden Beach Bats, Skateboards and Surfboards are individually handcrafted by skilled marceneiros in Brazil and embody the fun, vibrant style of Rio. Our Beach Bats are made of driftwood and offcuts from the carpentry trade, covered with a unique resin used for crafting surfboards and finished with a special neoprene grip that comes in different hues. All bats are unique in colour, shape, details and weight, and come with a set of balls that are specifically designed for an increased playability.
Lian first fashioned the racquets after been exposed to then called “game of rackets” by French, Spanish and English army officials.