Inside the Team USA House in Rio
RIO DE JANEIRO – The Olympic Games are so hectic for the athletes and their families that sometimes they don't even get to see each other until after both the competition and ensuing news conferences.
But there is one place family and athletes can just sit back and relax: the Team USA House.
What's normally a schoolhouse for 600 children on the coast of Ipanema has been completely transformed for the Olympics into the USA House while the school children enjoy Winter Break.
The house is where athletes, families, invited friends and sponsors can escape the hustle and bustle of the Olympic Village and be entertained.
"This was and still is a school, and it houses 600 children between the ages of 3 and 17. A mural (in the lobby) here has every single athlete that made our Olympic team," Lisa Reliford, with the USA House, said.
The main hospitality room, where most people come and hang out, is decorated with a nod to Brazil's cool, beach vibe.
The rooftop city terrace overlooks the stunning Ipanema coastline.
All of the improvements made to the school from the inside out, including the artwork, was created by the children and will remain at the school for years to come.
The artwork was made with recycled materials like Havianas flip flops and plastic bottle caps, in keeping with the theme of environmental conservation of these Olympic Games.
Team USA will complete renovations to the house before the children return to school after the Olympics.