Madrid: A City Guide

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Madrid: A City Guide

Madrid is the capital of Spain, mostly known for its football team, the Real Madrid, and its museums, like the Prado or the Reina Sofia. But the city has so much more to offer!

In this article, I will help you plan your trip, let you know where to stay to benefit from good services and a central location, help you discover the Spanish traditional cuisine and, finally, what to do in the city, including the famous sights you can’t miss.

Where to Stay in Madrid

Axel Hotel

The Axel Hotel is an Adult Only Hotel located in the city centre not far from the Chueca neighborhood. This location has a restaurant with traditional Spanish food and even a rooftop with a bar and a pool offering amazing cocktails. Other facilities are the fitness centre, the sauna and wellness centre. Rooms are fully equipped with air- conditioning and a flat-screen TV.

7 Islas Hotel

This hotel is located in the heart of the city with great bars, restaurants and nightclubs nearby. The hotel benefits from various facilities such as a restaurant, a bar and a café! Rooms are fully equipped and all bathrooms are made of marble (so beautiful!). They also provide shuttle transfers from and to the airport.

Gran Hotel Ingles

This hotel is one of the most luxurious in the city. It is a 5-star hotel located in the city centre, not far from the Paseo del Arte and famous museums, such as the Prado or the Reina Sofia. The staff is very friendly and will take care of everything so that you can enjoy your stay without any stress. Rooms are fully equipped with air-conditioning and are decorated in a very modern and stylish way. They all have their own marble bathroom. The hotel also provides food in its gastronomic Restaurant, Lobo 8, where clients can try Spanish traditional dishes all made with in-season and delicious products.

Where to Eat in Madrid

Cafe Comercial

This is one of the oldest bars in the city and was (and is still) adored by famous painters and artists, who used to seat on the terrace or behind the window to get inspired by the city and its inhabitants. The cafe provides dishes and drinks perfect for lunch or a few drinks between friends at night!

café comercial

Café Comercial

Gran Clavel Restaurant

This restaurant is one of my favorites because it contains 3 different atmospheres. The first one is the restaurant with authentic and generous Madrilenian food. The second one is the Bar de Vinos perfect to enjoy fresh tapas, such as garlic shrimp with a glass of wine. And the last one allows clients to sit near the window and is perfect to have breakfast and taste some vermouth.

La Cupula de Los Penotes

This place is designed as a cute bubble in the middle of a garden, which allows you to eat inside but still receive the natural light of the sun without any rain or wind bothering you. Located outside of the city, it is surrounded by nature and trees. On the menu: fresh and quality products from all over the world, from Japanese cuisine to salads, meals based on fish, and hummus! This restaurant gives you a calm and relaxing moment away from the city.


Located in the Chueca neighborhood, this place offers amazing and delicious bubble waffles as well as hot dogs and pizza. All the food is created and designed by the famous chef, Javier Aranda. The restaurant is a big success and bubble waffles have become very trendy. They also have a salty bubble waffle, which I bet you’ve never tried before! It is just like a pizza and can be topped with tomato sauce, mushrooms, ham and cheese!

What to Do in Madrid

Shopping session

If you are looking to shop in the capital, you are in the right place. The Calle Gran Via, which is the biggest and central avenue of Madrid, has got everything you need in just one place. You will find restaurants, bars, cinemas and shops. Most of them are fast-fashion places, such as H&M or Zara, where clothes can be sold cheaper than in your home country. Another great place to shop is the Malasana district, which welcomes many independent stores and sells vintage clothes. And finally, if you are looking for a luxury experience, go to the Calle Serrano in the Salamanca neighborhood, where the most luxurious shops are located.

Lazaro Galdiano Museum


LAZARO GALDIANO MUSEUM in Salamanca district in Madrid (Spain). Building from 1908.

The Galdiano Museum was the private house of the editor, José Lazaro Galdiano. After his death, his former house was turned into a museum for his painting and book collection. However, you won’t only see paintings and books, but also sculptures and a lovely garden with roses. The majority of his book collection is not on display and is kept safe for researchers, but you will be able to see some of it during temporary exhibitions. When it comes to paintings, you will find masterpieces by Goya or El Greco.

Retiro Park

Palacio de Cristal

If you come to Madrid, you can’t leave without going to the Retiro Park. This place was initially part of the garden of the King’s second residence, called Palacio del Buen Retiro. But after many wars (especially the ones of Napoleon in the 19th century), the palace was destroyed. The park is now open to the public and welcomes many cultural monuments, such as the Palacio de Cristal. This structure was initially used to house the Philippine Exhibition and is designed as a greenhouse, but now it welcomes temporary exhibitions of the Reina Sofia Museu. Its structure is entirely made of iron and glass and overhangs a little lake.

But this is only the beginning!

Madrid has so much more to offer.

So plan your own trip and find out more!

Juliette Smith

Juliette Smith

Passionate about traveling, I’ve been pretty much everywhere in Europe. I've experienced different traveling styles, from backpacking to luxury, from leisure and relaxing trips to more adventurous ones. But Spain is where my heart is!