Captivating exhibitions that will make you return to Madrid in 2017

By | 6 February, 2017 | 0 comments

Exposiciones en Madrid en 2017

All culture and museum fans who are visiting Madrid in 2017 are in luck. This year is looking very promising in regards to exhibitions, since there are many attractive ones planned for all interests.

Winter exhibitions

La Casa Encendida presents Long Live the Free Fields of Spain! an exhibition made up of more than thirty paintings by Antonio Ballester Moreno based on geometry, popular culture and nature. Also, the adjacent rooms will be occupied by a new edition of Generations, where young artists exhibit their latest works.

The Juan March Foundation is hosting an exhibition that presents the complete trajectory of German-American painter Lyonel Feininger (1871-1956), master of Bauhaus and a key figure of the avant-garde art scene.

Spring exhibitions

The organisation of the Reina Sofía Museum is celebrating the birthday of one of its most charismatic works: Guernica by Picasso. On the occasion of the 80th anniversary of this painting’s creation, 25 years of which spent on the walls of this museum in Madrid, starting on the 4th of April you can visit an exhibition that will comprise 150 works by Picasso with Guernica as the main attraction.

A few yards away, the Prado Museum will see the inauguration of Visions of the Hispanic World. Treasures of the Hispanic Society, an exhibition made up of approximately 200 works from the Hispanic Society of America, a New-York-based institution founded in 1904 by Archer Milton Huntington.

Summer exhibitions

On June 20th, the Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum will present The Renaissance in Venice, an exhibition dedicated to Sixteenth-century Venetian paintings. Open until September 24th, the exhibition will have works by artists such as Titian, Tintoretto, Veronese and Lotto among others.

CaixaForum will host Ancient Greeks: athletes, warriors and heroes, a journey back to the origin of the Olympic Games, theatres, ancient polis and war. This exhibition allows visitors to discover Greek treasures, including iconic items from the Mausoleum which have never before left the British Museum.

Autumn exhibitions

The Mapfre Foundation will show why Ignacio Zuloaga (1870-1945) is worthy of acknowledgement by art and symbolism fans with their exhibition Zuloaga: A European adventure.

Centro de Arte Canal will bring back the sad memories of Auschwitz to its facilities in an exhibition that will include personal items of Holocaust victims who remained locked in the barracks of the concentration camps, many of whom lost their lives there.

Categories: Art and culture in Madrid

Hospital de Maudes, a century of history

By | 22 December, 2016 | 0 comments

Patio interior del Palacio de Maudes

On sunny days, the white limestone of the Palacio de Maudes shines brightly, making this great monument even more magnificent. On rainy days, the pureness of the white is tempered, but its beauty continues to be unique and undeniable, since in this way the lively colours of the ceramics adorning its façade and the sounds of the water in the courtyard are all the clearer.

It is now a hundred years since the opening of this architectural treasure, a work by Antonio Palacios and Joaquín Otamendi, declared a National Monument in 1976. Palacios is considered by many to be Madrid’s greatest architect, since he transformed the city with around thirty projects, including the Palacio de Comunicaciones on Plaza de Cibeles and the Círculo de Bellas Artes building.

All these constructions share a close artistic relationship with the Hospital de Maudes: white facades, monumental square towers, natural unpolished stone surfaces… these characteristics mark the style of the Galician architect whose legacy is celebrated by Madrid Region with an extensive programme of activities.

The majestic Palacio de Maudes, today the offices of the Regional Ministry of Transport, was designed as a hospital for day labourers. Hence its cross plan, which lets light enter the different bays, and its high ceilings, created to allow the air to circulate, thought to be important in order to avoid infections among the patients. For twenty years, poor workers with few resources came here to receive medical attention, and here they would convalesce for periods of up to a month.

All this was stipulated by Doña Dolores Romero y Arano, widow of Francisco Curiel y Blasi and benefactor of the institution, whose remains lie today in the crypt of the church together with those of some of her closest relatives. After the hospital closed during the Civil War the building was abandoned for decades, until it was acquired by the state and restored during the 1980s. A present to the city of Madrid, and one which is now a hundred years old.

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Visit the Madrid Christmas markets

By | 12 December, 2016 | 0 comments

mercadillo navidad

Christmas carols are being sung, the sky is lit up with lights, streets are lined up with decorations, squares have their Nativity scenes and people immerse themselves in the Christmas spirit to enjoy these wonderful days.

The magic of this holiday acquires a special value with the opening of the popular Christmas markets and fairs, which sell crafts, fashion items, accessories, decorations, jewellery and collector’s items for all tastes.

In this post we are going to show you the most traditional Christmas markets which take place year after year in the city, so you can visit them and enjoy a Christmas spirit like you’ve never seen before.

Plaza Mayor Christmas Market. The most famous one in Madrid. Here, you can find many stalls that, this year, present a renewed image in red and triangular roofs and that sell traditional Christmas items such as Nativity scene figurines, decorations, clothes and gourmet food.

Plaza de Benavente Market. Known as the Christmas Card Fair, here you can find many crafts and gifts made in Spain. One of its most striking characteristics is its Medieval-style stalls, of which there are more than 20.

Plaza de Santa Cruz Market. In the squares located around Plaza Mayor there are many stalls set up which sell Christmas crafts, the perfect option for a beautiful gift.

Plaza de España Crafts Fair. This emblematic spot is where sellers congregate to sell their best craft designs with Christmas motifs, ideal to decorate your home.

Plaza Isabel II Sweets Fair. Located in front of Teatro Real, this market stands out for the fact that it only sells sweets. Here, you can buy traditional Christmas sweets and even exotic Arab ones.

Categories: Art and culture in Madrid

Visit Madrid’s Nativity scenes

By | 4 December, 2016 | 0 comments

Navidad Madrid

 

Christmas has arrived! The time of year of happiness and joy that is, undoubtedly, one of the most beautiful, is upon us. This magical day is to be spent with family and friends, to make and receive gifts and to continue with the traditions that make this day which commemorates the birth of Baby Jesus so special.

One way of celebrating this is by preparing a beautiful Nativity scene, known as pesebre or belén in Spanish. Madrid exhibits beautiful works of art that bring the Nativity scenes to life in churches and public and cultural institutions, making them one of the main attractions for locals and for visitors who come to the city during the holidays.

In this post you can find Madrid’s best Nativity scenes. Most of them are free to visit but are prone to the forming of queues, so we recommend that you go during off-peak hours.

The Nativity scene of Puerta del Sol, located in Real Casa de Correos, is one of the most famous ones year after year. It’s made up by approximately 500 figurines that present different biblical passages which go from the Annunciation of the Virgin Mary to the escape to Egypt. The Nativity Scene Association of Madrid is in charge of its production.

The famous Plaza Mayor Nativity scene will exhibit its more than 250 figurines acquired by the City Council over the last few years. It shows a stunning set design lit up day and night, which make it a captivating place for visitors.

On the other hand, the Nativity scene of the Palacio Real, also known as Belén del Príncipe, is made up by more than 200 figurines which recreate the reign of King Carlos III. It is considered as one of the most valuable ones exhibited in the city.

A unique one is the one shown in the Church of San Ginés, of Sevillian-style Baroque, with a prominent image of the Virgin Mary and its contemporary-style figurines.

The Hieronymite nuns present the Nativity scene in Convento de las Carboneras, an exotic design with Seventeenth-century Quito Baroque style which recreate the birth of Baby Jesus.

To take part in Christmas activities, this year you can go on guided tours by registering in the Official Tours Programme carried out by the Madrid Tourist Office, so you can make the most of this festivity in the city.

Categories: Art and culture in Madrid

Autumn weddings in our hotels

By | 27 November, 2016 | 0 comments

Salones CHH

It all starts with a dream. Getting married is one of the most extraordinary experiences of your lifetime. The union of two people who love each other and wish to be together for the rest of their lives is legitimated by a civil or religious ceremony which formalises this partnership between the couple, which leads to matrimony.

Getting married comes with the most important decision of the couples’ lives, determined by common agreement between them. After this measure comes the time to plan the special day and everything has to be just like the bride and groom imagined.

In Madrid, it’s not the same to get married in summer than in winter, since the climate of every season is very different. However, getting married in autumn is something very special. The temperature is perfect to enjoy the breeze, there is no overwhelming heat nor freezing cold. The weather is also perfect for the best weddings photographs in the unique setting that only Madrid can offer.

Choosing the wedding dress, the decoration, the cake, the wedding suite and taking care of everything else is always complicated. However, in this post we are telling you not to worry. Our hotel chain offers a team of expert wedding-planning professionals who bring trust and tranquillity to our clients with each celebration, making their dream day come true.

Our fully renovated event rooms offer a new concept of distinction, character and elegance which is a reference of its kind. They are fully equipped with all the necessary material so that the wedding celebration is a success. We focus on offering a first-class wedding banquet so that the bride and groom and their guests can enjoy a day that they will never forget.

Categories: Events in Madrid

Six essential parks to visit in autumn

By | 30 October, 2016 | 0 comments

Madrid stands out for having hundreds of acres of stunning green spaces which surprise all of its visitors. These places could be defined as special and magical, since they are perfect for relaxing, strolling, breathing in fresh air, enjoying the natural view, losing yourself among the trees and even practicing your favourite sport.

You can visit them at any time of year but autumn is the best time to do so thanks to the many colour contrasts that you can find: brown, grey, yellow, red, purple… they all mix together to bring stunning views to those who visit them.

parques madrid

Parque del Retiro. Without doubt, the most famous park in the whole city, one of Madrid’s green lungs and most popular tourist attractions. Aside from its thousands of trees and dozens of gardens, it’s also a space for culture and leisure. You can go on a boat ride on its lake or visit the Palacio de Cristal, a romantic pavilion that exhibits important works of art.

Parque Casa de Campo. This natural space is considered Madrid’s largest public park. There are many things to do here, such as go to the Parque de Atracciones theme park, the Zoo, the Cable Car (Teleférico – which connects Casa de Campo and Parque del Oeste), different fairs, the Madrid Arena and the many events it hosts and other popular sports facilities.

Parque El Capricho de la Alameda de Osuna. This space, which is part of Madrid’s artistic and natural heritage, is one of the most beautiful parks despite not being one of the most popular ones. Located in Alameda de Osuna, here you can enjoy its French-style garden, English landscape and Italian giardino.

Parque del Oeste. This famous green space located between the road to A Coruña and Ciudad Universitaria, in the Moncloa district, has unique points of interest such as the Cable Car (Teleférico), the Ceramic School, La Rosaleda, the Temple of Debod. Find it near Plaza de España.

Parque Madrid Río. Here, you can come into contact with Madrid’s historical monuments as well as facilities for leisure and culture. It has a pedestrian and recreational area on the banks of the Manzanares river, the perfect place to enjoy a day out with your family.

Parque Cerro del Tío Pío. Better known as the “park of the seven boobs” due to the shape of its hills, this green space located in the area of Puente de Vallecas has extensive fields and long lines of trees that make it one of the most popular of its kind in the southern area of the city. If you want to enjoy good panoramic views of Madrid, this is the place to come.

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Bar terraces up in the sky, an ideal autumn plan

By | 20 October, 2016 | 0 comments

Summer in Madrid is famous for many things. One of them is the many bar terraces that welcome everyone who wants to beat the heat and sun with a nice drink. Whether it’s for a drink, a few tapas or dinner, bar terraces are perfect for all occasions, especially if you can visit one up high that offers fantastic panoramic views of the city.

terraza madrid

Even though the heat has gone and temperatures have started to fall, we recommend that you make the most of the fresh autumn days and enjoy the beautiful sunsets from some of the best panoramic bar terraces in Madrid.

  • Rooftop of the Círculo de Bellas Artes. Located on the seventh floor, from here you can enjoy a complete view of Paseo de la Castellana, Palacio de Correos, Puerta de Alcalá, Gran Vía and Cibeles. This place is popular with tourists and from here you can see the sunset or start the night with a delicious dinner or a few drinks.

 

  • Terrace of Palacio Cibeles. From this emblematic space located in the central Plaza de Cibeles, where the new City Hall is, you can enjoy the best panoramic views in the Spanish capital. The viewpoint is located on the eighth floor of the central tower, 230 feet up in the sky. If want to enjoy some good food, its bar and restaurant on the sixth floor offer excellent options.

 

  • Terrace of La Casa Encendida. A popular place to watch films, have a drink or a pleasant chat, from this terrace you can take in some beautiful evenings while enjoying cultural activities. Designed with temporary architecture made out of reusable materials, it’s the perfect place for an evening with friends or with your partner.

 

  • Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum viewpoint. Located on the fifth floor of Villahermosa Palace, the building where the museum is housed, this space combines art and gastronomy in an area overlooking the garden with different heights, from where you can enjoy a great panoramic view of the Prado Museum.

 

  • Sabatini Gardens Terrace. This rooftop terrace, located in front of Palacio Real, stands out for its stunning views of the city. Its gastronomic offer of tapas, cocktails and drinks makes it a popular spot amongst visitors who want to enjoy pleasant evenings overlooking the Temple of Debod.

 

  • San Antón Market Terrace. This renovated street market invites its clients up to its 4,300-ft2 terrace on the third floor to look at the idyllic streets and buildings of the beautiful Chueca district.

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Autumn is here… Time to eat callos!

By | 10 October, 2016 | 0 comments

Winter is coming. You can feel the cold breeze on your face and the temperatures going down. The warm clothes are starting to come out of the wardrobe and we start eating food that will warm us up. Spanish cuisine is varied and it presents perfect options for cold days. Among its wide range of traditional dishes, lead by the stellar cocido, there are others that stand out for their unique flavour and smell. Callos are one of them, an ideal dish for this time of year.

This distinctive hot dish with a characteristic name is made from beef tripe, chorizo, blood sausage and ham. If you like cooking, it’s also an excellent choice to make at home. You can also sample the many varieties of callos served in restaurants all over Madrid. In fact, one way of showing off the greatness of this delicious dish and promoting it to locals and visitors alike is the “Callos Month”, a month fully dedicated to having callos acknowledged as a star dish.

You can try the special menu that participating restaurants are offering, each with their own delicious callos recipe, all of them homemade and at a good price. These menus are comprised of a starter, callos and dessert or coffee. If you would like to see first hand how this popular dish is made, go on the special tour that visits all the main tripe shops in the city. We also recommend that you visit the following restaurants that are taking part in this month-long event, which include: A Cañada Delic Experience, Casa Baranda, Casa Paulino, Casa Pedro, Cruz Blanca Vallecas, El Pitaco, Ferreiro, Hylogui, Jardín de Recoletos, La Ardosa, La Bola, La Emualda, Los Arcos de Ponzano, Los Galayos, Malacatin, O Pazo de Lugo, Samarkanda, Taberna Alegrías and Taberna Gaztelupe.

Like in all of the city’s cultural activities, these gastronomic proposals have the support of the Madrid City Council Tourism Office, tourist information centres and the Restaurant Associations.

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Men and their hair. Barbershops in Madrid.

By | 30 September, 2016 | 0 comments

Barberías

 

Hair is one of the most distinctive features in a person, perhaps the most, because its shape, cut and texture shape our expressions and behaviours. Taking good care of it is something we all like and that we are increasingly investing more in. Taking good care of your hair is not something that only women do anymore, because men are doing so more than ever, even if it means going back in time in the manner it’s done.

Traditional barbershops are back in fashion, with their sharp razors, vintage looks from the 50s and exquisite service, taking care not just of your hair but also of your beard and moustache.

In Madrid you can find everything and this includes hipster barbershops for retro lovers.

Barbería Malayerba. Located on Plaza 2 de Mayo, one of the most traditional and hipster spots in Madrid, this barbershop has earned a high degree of popularity. They take care of every single detail, their barbers are straight out of the 50s and they make their own exclusive hair products for men together with the Olivia Soaps brand, a Segovia-based company that specialises in handmade soaps. This barbershop is an oasis for men, a place where they can enjoy their very own personal moment.

The Barber’s Shop. This is another of our favourite barbershops that we wanted to mention, because its decoration has completely won us over. Located on Avenida de América, between the Salamanca and Chamartín districts (the perfect location for our guests), it offers a wide range of services for all of its male customers and combines modern treatments and old aesthetics to perfection. Haircuts, beard treatments, therapeutic and body massages, special skin-care devices, hair-loss treatments and hair removal are just some of the services that they offer here.

In any case, men in Madrid take care of their image and do so in style.

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Aging traffic lights in Madrid

By | 20 September, 2016 | 0 comments

Primer semáforo de Madrid

With time, everything gets old, it’s just the way life works. However, this principle doesn’t just apply to people, animals and living creatures in general but also to everything that surrounds us. Sometimes these things are more representative than others and more attention is paid to them and yet others go unnoticed. Nevertheless, everything celebrates its anniversary.

When something is more curious, we tend to pay more attention to it and this is the case of our story today, the first traffic light in Madrid, which is turning 90 years old. For this reason, for the privilege of being the first, we are going to dedicate a few lines to it and tell its story.

Despite celebrating its 90th birthday a few months ago, it’s still as special today. The year was 1926, more specifically on March 17th, and the traffic light which today regulates the traffic on Gran Vía took its spot and became the first of its kind in the city. In fact, this date that we state as its “birthday” wasn’t the day that they placed it there and that it began to work… In fact, two months had to pass for it to start working in what was to be its spot for the next 90 years.

Locals and visitors of the time would go there just to see it, because this new “device” was in the city to stay and help regulate traffic and pedestrians.

Since then, the city has gone from nothing to everything or, more specifically, from 1 to 130,000, which is the number of traffic lights that Madrid has today. They’ve evolved in design and functionality but their objective is still the same, which they successfully achieve after all these years.

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