MAP Magazine Madrid takes a summer break

Where are we? We´re at the beach :-)

 

Hey there Mapistas!

People have been emailing me and asking what the heck is going on with localhost:8888/mapmagazine. Well, we’re on vacation! :-) When we get back in a few short weeks, we’ll be lauching a brand new tourism/expat site which will knock your calcetines off.

Meanwhile, check our articles sections below. We are filling in more and more content as we go!!!

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Phillip Stark
Director

Puerta de Alcalá, a Madrid entranceway fit for a king!

 

Puerta de Alcalá
Plaza de la Independencia, s/n
Metro: Retiro

In 1759 King Carlos III entered Madrid through the Puerta de Alcalá, which at the time was the 16th baroque gate built by King Felipe III, but believed that it was too small to properly mark such a glorious occasion.  Therefore, in 1764 he ordered the gate to be torn down and commissioned a new one.  The Italian architect Sabatini constructed the new, larger gate, which marked the eastern boundary of the city and the gateway to Aragon. The gate now stands in the Plaza de la Independencia, which is only a few meters from the Retiro Park and Barrio de Salamanca’s luxury and designer shops.

Sabatini designed the gate with three large archways and two smaller, rectangular passages.  Each of the archways is adorned by a lion’s head, sculpted by the Frenchman Roberto Michel.  Atop the gate are statues designed by Francisco Guttiérrez.  This gate is built of granite and limestone. It took nine years to complete and quickly became one of Madrid’s most popular and recognizable symbols.  In fact, many songs have been written about the monument, including the very popular 1991 song by Ana Belen and Victor Manuel named after the gate.  The Puerta de Alcalá is classified as a national monument and is one of Madrid’s most widely recognized tourist sites.

Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum in Madrid, Spain

 

Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum
Paseo del Prado, 8
Metro: Banco de España

Originally the private art collection of Baron Hans Heinrich Thyssen-Bornemisza, the museum named after its patron has a collection made up of over 800 paintings. The paintings by the old masters were mainly bought by the Baron’s father, while Hans focused on 19th and 20th century works, making for an impressive and varied collection. Here we can find works from the 13th century to the present day all under same roof, and can thus follow the most important trends and movements in art over the last few hundred years.

One of the most appealing aspects of the museum is that it complements the collections held in the other two museums that form the Golden Triangle of Art in Madrid, the Museo del Prado and the Reina Sofia. In particular, the museum houses movements such as the Italian and Dutch primitives, German Renaissance art, 17th century Dutch painting, Impressionism, German Expressionism, Russian Constructivism, Geometric Abstraction and Pop Art. Its unique collection of 19th century North American paintings occupies two halls of the museum, and makes the Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza a “must-see” for any tourist.

The museum is open from 10am to 7pm. It is closed on Mondays, the 1st of January, 1st of May and 25 of December. The entrance fee is 6 €. For more information, visit the museum’s official website http://www.museothyssen.org or call (+34) 914 203 944.

Neptune Fountain Madrid

 

Neptune Fountain
Plaza Cánovas del Castillo, s/n
Metro: Banco de España

This statue is based on drawings by Ventura Rodríguez from the year 1782 and is the handiwork of Juan Pascual de Mena, who sculpted it out of white marble.  King Carlos III commissioned the statue as part of his quest to beautify the city.

Neptune, the god of the seas, is presented on a shell-shaped chariot pulled by sea-horses.  In his right hand he holds a coiled snake and in the left a trident.  The statue was originally situated in the Prado del Apolo and faced the Cibeles Fountain, but was moved to the center of the Plaza de Cánovas del Castillo in 1898, where it stands today.  Luxury and beauty surround the fountain, with two of Madrid’s most exclusive hotels, the Ritz and the Palace, as well as two major art museums, the Prado and Thyssen-Bornemisza, at each one of the plaza’s corners.

Fuente de Neptuno is one of the three great sculptures designed by Ventura Rodríguez, along with Fuente de Cibeles and the Fuente de Apolo on the Paseo del Prado.  

The Prado Museum in Madrid, Spain

 

Prado Museum
Paseo del Prado, s/n
Metro: Atocha or Banco de España

Situated on the beautiful Paseo del Prado, this world famous museum, opened in 1819, contains over 9,000 works, mostly paintings, with about 1,500 on display at a time. The building was commissioned by Carlos III in 1785, but was not opened until 1819 under the reign of Fernando VII. The Prado housed the royal collection of art until it quickly become too small. The building has seen many expansions over the years, most recently in 2007. Still, many of its works are exhibited in two adjacent buildings, the Villanueva Building and the Cason del Buen Retiro. Today, the museum receives over 2 million visitors annually.

The Museo del Prado is home to the world’s finest collection of Spanish paintings from the 12th through the early 19th century. Some of its most renowned artists include Diego Velázquez, Franciso Goya, El Greco, Bartolomé Estéban Murillo and Jusepe de Ribera and many other old Spanish masters, although there are also works by artists from other countries, such as Italy, Germany, France and the Netherlands. The museum’s most famous painting is Las Meninas by Velázquez.

The museum is open from from 9am to 7pm, from Tuesday to Sunday. It is closed on Mondays. Entrance is free all day Sunday and on the 2nd & 18th of May, 12th of October and 6th of December. General entrance tickets are 6€, and the reduced price entry is 3€. For more information, visit www.museoprado.es or call (+34) 913 302 900.