Pele, a grand structure constructed to honor the Brazilian legend Edson Arantes do Nascimento, is situated on the outskirts of Sao Paulo. The Memorial Necropole Ecumenica vertical cemetery, located less than a kilometer from his beloved club Santos’ Vila Belmiro stadium, is where “O Rei” was laid to rest after passing away at the age of 83 due to advanced colon cancer. The room where the three-time world champion is laid to rest is adorned with two life-size golden statues and designed to resemble a stadium, complete with synthetic turf on the floor, images of fans in the stands, and a small painted sky on the ceiling. The golden tomb has a cross on top and panels on the sides depicting his famous fist-in-the-air celebration after scoring his 1000th goal at the Maracana stadium in 1969. The memorial hall’s four corners prominently display the only jerseys the Brazilian icon ever wore—for Santos, the Brazilian national team, and the New York Cosmos, from which he retired in 1977. The venue is expected to attract tourists from all over the world to Santos, but only the first sixty registered visitors per day will be allowed to enter for now.
Sao Paulo boasts a unique repository of treasures, and the latest addition to this is Pele’s lavish golden tomb. The iconic and legendary Brazilian footballer was buried in the luxurious Sao Paulo Crystal Mausoleum in the beautiful Sao Paulo Cemetery, and his golden tomb has already become a symbol of the city and of the man himself.
The design of the tomb reflects both Pele’s flamboyant and vibrant personality and his lifetime of service to Brazilian football. The stunning tomb consists of a tall, marble pillar that is engraved with a quote from Pele himself, “Success is no accident, it is hard work, dedication to the job at hand, and the determination that whether we win or lose, we have applied the best of ourselves to the task at hand.” The pillar is then surrounded by a star-shaped, golden marble plinth which is adorned with the Brazilian national crest and the signature of Pele. The beautiful exterior of the tomb is completed by a mural of the soccer great in action, playing the beautiful game.
The Sao Paulo Crystal Mausoleum is a luxurious building that houses Pele’s golden tomb and many other famous alumni. The structure was opened in 2018 and its main hall stretches over five stories in height, with the walls made of travertine marble and crystal chandeliers adorning the interior. In addition to the grandeur of the main hall, each floor also has luxurious private rooms, where families can pay their respects to their loved ones.
The opening of Pele’s golden tomb has been met with great enthusiasm by many locals, who flock to the mausoleum to pay homage to the great footballer. The Sao Paulo Crystal Mausoleum is a great testament to the power of football in Brazil, and serves as an important reminder that Pele’s spirit will never be forgotten in his beloved homeland.
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