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The design lover’s guide to Madrid: theatres and tasca bars


The design lover’s guide to Madrid: theatres and tasca bars

The editor of Houzz Spain takes us on an aesthete's tour of sculpted spaces to drink, eat and siesta in style in the Spanish capital

Amelia Mularz

BY Amelia Mularz29 March 2019

It’s hard to travel and not appreciate good design. More than once we’ve lost our minds over light fixtures, pined for reclaimed wood and pocketed artful matchbooks at check in. At risk of feeling a tad guilty, we turned to someone who also exhibits a devotion to design. Join us as Rafael Fernández Bermejo, editor of architecture and interiors website Houzz Spain, pinpoints his favourite places to eat, drink and stay in Madrid


Hotel Urso

‘A five-star boutique hotel in a prime location, Hotel Urso is just steps away from the Plaza de Alonso Martínez, Chueca and Tribunal. Perhaps the most beautiful element of the building is its façade, particularly the decorated balconies. Architect Antonio Obrador was responsible for the renovation. Inside, it manages to be both modern and elegant, but warm at the same time, thanks to the colour palette and natural materials. Especially interesting is the bar area and the restaurant, which has a more contemporary and fresh feel.’


Matadero Madrid

‘Music, theatre and design can all be found in Matadero Madrid, a public space that hosts art events, concerts and exhibitions. It’s just steps away from Madrid Río: the most important urban intervention in Madrid in recent decades, made up of a huge park with play areas and an urban beach beside the River Manzanares. For those interested in contemporary culture, this area is well worth a visit.’



‘This is an elevated food hall – created by interior designer Lázaro Rosa-Violán and inspired by the glamour of the 1950s – that’s built in the former Carlos III cinema. The stage and stalls have been preserved and give the space charm; in what used to be the moat, you’ll find a series of small food stands. Stop by and shop for fruit and vegetables, or enjoy a meal from a celebrated chef, such as Ricard Camarena.’


Bodega de la Ardosa

‘If you know the right places, eating in Madrid can be a real experience. Bodega de la Ardosa, in the Malasaña neighbourhood, is a must for lovers of good food. It’s a 100-year-old tavern that offers a juicy omelette, which is, in my opinion, the best in Madrid. Make sure to order una cañita, too – the minature Madrileño measure of beer. The interior can be described as ‘typically Spanish’, the bar crowded with bottles from floor to ceiling.’


Fox Cook & Sound

‘Fox, a fashionable place in Madrid, is a good place to eat, have a drink or sip a coffee. It has the feel of a private house and its decoration is impeccable – from the industrial air of the British-style living room, to the handmade lamps and wicker chairs in the Porch restaurant. Alba Hurlé and Alicia Martín, from Cousi Interiorismo, have achieved a thoughtful interior here, in which no foodie will feel disappointed.’


Celso y Manolo

‘If you want to experience a contemporary version of a typical Spanish tasca bar, head to Celso y Manolo. The interior is warm and simple, with a marble bar and flooring. But it also has a contemporary twist, thanks to the posters, careful lighting and accessories, including Adnet mirrors. Bright and fresh – it’s perfect for an aperitif.’

Design a stay in our city hotels or feast on Venice and its bite-sized bacari…