I would say that Sao Paulo is a beautiful city. Perhaps it can't match Rio during Carnival, but not much can.
Helicopters rule the sky in my home town. One of my earliest memories is falling asleep to the thrum of them passing overhead when I was only a babe. I still remember when I was five, we had to sell my mother's motorbike because Sao Paulo passed laws forbidding private ownership of vehicles inside the city limits. The poor and middle class survived on the fleets of busses that owned the streets while the rich paid for helicopter taxi's. When I was fifteen the city finished building the first of a set of raised trains that helped to replace many of the noxious and slow busses.
Everything goes up in Sao Paulo. There are skyscrapers and more skyscrapers. My parents lived in a University owned apartment on the 27th floor of a 45 floor building. It wasn't the tallest by far. My mom was always happy with the apartment because we got a separate bedroom and a spot on the south side of the building. My father grew up in the country around Brasilia. She used to tease him that she would grow him plants so he felt at home there, so far above the ground. I guess that's why I love living with green things.
For such a big, high city, Sao Paulo has a lot of trees. There was a campaign when I was a kid to plant more trees on the sidewalks and add more parks and grass instead of concrete. It was pushed by some members of the upper class and backed by the government, so it had plenty of funding. Part of what it meant was that some of the poorer neighborhoods were forcibly relocated. My mom was pissed about that. She always hated the mistreatment of those who could not protect themselves. But like most everyone else, there wasn't much she could do.