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STYLE CAPITAL


REINA SOFIA


E


rnest Hemingway summed up the Spanish capital quite accurately when he said: “To go to bed at night in Madrid marks you as a


little queer.” After all, this is a city where dinner


doesn’t start until 10pm, where cosy bars are found on every corner and where and fried doughnut-style churros and chocolate are served as breakfast to those returning from a night out at 6am. Barcelona may be famed for its Gaudi


architecture and beach style, but Madrid is known as the true city of Spaniards, where lively locals love nothing more than meeting in plazas for a caña (small beer), where all conversations happen 10 decibels louder than necessary and where, as Hemingway noted: “Appointments with a friend are habitually made for after midnight at the café.” Perhaps it was this laid-back love of life that attracted the writers of Spain’s Golden Age to the smoky tapas bars of what is now known as the Barrio de las Letras, or District of Letters. Miguel de Cervantes, Lope de Vega and Francisco de Quevedo all frequented this neighbourhood, which is still famous as an artistic hub thanks to Madrid’s three spectacular art galleries: The Prado, Thyssen and Reina Sofia.


GRAN HOTEL


Whether it is elegant architecture, a love of art,


or culinary prowess that brings you to this city, Madrid won’t disappoint. And with new boutiques, eateries and ultra- stylish bars opening every week, Spain’s underrated capital is taking its rightful place among Europe’s most exciting city break destinations.


‘Whether it is elegant


architecture, a love of art or culinary prowess that brings you to this city, Madrid won’t disappoint’


WHERE TO STAY For a city that never sleeps, Madrid certainly has plenty of hotel options, offering everything from old-world elegance to trend-setting style. The Gran Hotel Inglés is the city’s newest luxury hotel… and also oldest.


its It went into


business in 1886, welcoming the great and the good from writers to bullfighters, and has just reopened


its doors following an extensive revamp. With Art Deco touches, a sleek spa and an oh-so-chic cocktail bar it is once again the place to see and be seen. Chueca is at the heart of Madrid’s


trendy bar and restaurant scene and its most stylish address is the Only You boutique hotel in a 19th century mansion. Set around a glamorous mirrored courtyard, the hotel unfolds to reveal a library, all navy blue tones and Chesterfield sofas, and a low lit lounge bar where you can enjoy a fino nightcap with the city’s fashionable set. In January, another glamorous hotel its


opens doors. Bless Hotel in the


refined Salamanca district will have all the requisites of a modern luxury hotel; a rooftop pool, spa and a restaurant by 10 Michelin-star Basque chef Martín Berasategui.


SAVILE ROW STYLE MAGAZINE 67


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