Sharing Madrid highlights today…still so incredibly in awe of this city. This trip to Madrid was really based on Instagram…the power of social media these days I swear to you it is stronger than you realize until you’re buying your plane ticket and convincing your sister that you have to go to Madrid because someone you follow on Instagram lives in Madrid and posts amazing photos. Ta da…then you are there.
This gem is the Crystal Palace in the Buen Retiro Park. I accidentally stumbled upon it. As I was wandering through Retiro Park on our first morning in Madrid, I saw something shiny and glistening in from a distance…hidden behind the lush foliage and leafy trees. Naturally I had to find it. Off the beaten path, almost glowing, was this incredible structure..so there DS and I are, walking up the hill and into a gorgeous metal and glass building (sidenote: I did not realize Madrid was so active…it was like Central Park but grander). This Crystal Palace is a must see, built by Ricardo Velasquez Basco, these photos just don’t do it justice…
We also saw the Monument to King Alfonso XII made out of marble and bronze with his statue sitting proudly overlooking the park..surreal to see in person.
DS and I dined at the Hotel Ritz in Madrid for a lovely garden lunch. This area is coined the Golden Triangle because it is central between three of the great museums of the world, The Prado, Reina Sofia, & the Thyssen Bornemisza Contemporary Museum…
Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia was absolutely gorgeous…the building, the art, the architecture, everything about it was like nothing I’ve ever seen at home and it was fabulous.
DS and I stayed at this cute modern boutique hotel called Hotel Ûnico, right in the chicest area of town on a street named Claudio Coello…not to mention it’s near the best high end shopping in Madrid and with beautiful tree lined streets.
The Royal Palace in Madrid is the official residence of the royal family, although we learned from our guide that this huge structure is only used for official events…the King and Queen of Spain live in a modern house just outside the city.
One of our first stops was at the Puerta Del Sol – considered the heart of the city. We saw the Bear and Strawberry Tree bronze and stone statue. This statue replicates a scene found in the coat of arms of Madrid which is located on the city’s flag. We were there just as the sun was setting and I caught a perfect silhouette of this iconic statue.
Mercado San Miguel was another favorite…it’s a beautiful glass and steel building that now houses a marketplace filled with all kinds of food stands serving a variety Spanish foods and beverages. I wanted to try the delicious looking Paella there but did not get a chance.