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City Guide to Madrid


I loved the look of Wes Anderson's Asteroid City so much I looked up where it was filmed, expecting it to be in the American West. Surprisingly, it was filmed just outside of Madrid, Spain! I also learned where the star-studded cast stayed, and I can book you a comfortable stay there too if you'd like to explore the landscapes outside of Madrid. But before you head out of town, spend some time in Madrid and check into one of the city new hotels that have opened (or reopened), like The Madrid EDITION on Plaza de las Descalzas in the city-center Sol neighborhood. Here's a city guide for your next visit!

Excerpt below from Virtuoso article dated 10/4/21 by Jeff Koehler can be found here.

Nuevo Madrid, people are calling it. The city is riding a wave of highly anticipated openings – the arrival of the Four Seasons Hotel Madrid, Mandarin Oriental’s renovation of the Ritz Hotel, a host of exciting new restaurants and shops, and the inauguration of the Museum of Royal Collections. Set beside the Royal Palace, the museum draws on 155,000 works belonging to the Spanish monarchy and previously inaccessible to the public. At the same time, a decades-long urban project is coming to fruition with a greenbelt linking Plaza de España with the palace complex and Casa de Campo Park. Formerly a royal hunting estate, the forested space – five times the size of Central Park and just minutes from the city center – became a public park in 1931. Given that Madrid is the sunniest of Europe’s capitals, it’s fitting that it now has more green spaces and parks in which to enjoy the rays.

Do

Rent a bike at Rent & Roll Madrid, just off Retiro Park. From there, a bike lane shoots across the city center to the royal complex, Madrid Río Park trails, Casa de Campo, and the 40-mile Anillo Verde (greenbelt) cycling path, which rings the city.

Eat

When the crew from one of Madrid’s hottest restaurants opened the lakeside Villa Verbena in Casa de Campo this spring, they dramatically improved the park’s dining options with their charcoal-grilled fish and meat dishes.

Bar Manero recently opened near Retiro Park after conquering coastal Alicante, bringing spicy patatas bravas and other classic tapas, and boldly taking Madrid’s signature fried squid sandwich to lofty heights with the addition of fresh ginger and lime.

Chef Roberto Ruiz closed Punto MX (the first Mexican restaurant in Europe awarded a Michelin star) to open Barracuda MX, serving Pacific Coast Mexican fare beside Retiro Park. Try the grilled octopus with pico de gallo and crunchy yucca, and sea bass with red and green chile adobos.

Drink

Madrileños spend an inordinate amount of time sitting on terraces with friends over drinks. Seventh-floor Dani Brasserie at the new Four Seasons has the city’s most stunning terraza; triangular and filled with potted plants, the shady spot is ideal for a late-afternoon aperitivo.

For a sense of Casa de Campo’s expanse, take the elevator to the 26th-floor Sky Bar on Plaza de España, which offers unparalleled, 360-degree views of the city.

Shop

Browse a curated choice of Spanish artesanía behind the blue facade of Cocol just off Plaza de la Paja. From traditional sandals and hats to pottery, cutting boards, and linen towels, the selections follow the owner’s belief that everyday objects can – and should – be beautiful.

Designer Andrés Gallardo has a growing global reputation for jewelry adorned with handcrafted porcelain figures. Having recently moved into a new space near Paseo del Prado with his workshop in the back, he’s often around and will show you his latest collection himself.

Stay

Following an ambitious, eight-year-long project that joined seven historic buildings, the 200-room Four Seasons Hotel Madrid opened in autumn 2020 in the heart of the city with a blend of original art deco curves and contemporary Spanish art. Some of the city’s largest, most stylish rooms await guests, along with food by chef Dani García and a 15,600-square-foot spa spread out over four floors. Virtuoso travelers receive breakfast daily and a $100 hotel credit.

After a major renovation, the city’s most iconic hotel reopened in April 2021 as the 153-room Mandarin Oriental Ritz, Madrid. The project restored the original glass cupola that has covered the central Palm Court since 1910, flooding the space with light. Virtuoso travelers receive breakfast daily and a $100 dining credit.

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