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4 Ways to Fall in Love with Madrid

An autumn trip to the Spanish capital mixes old and new with a fresh boutique hotel and celebrations for the 400-year-old Plaza Mayor.

Madrid, Spain


The Walt Madrid

The Walt opened this past February in the heart of the city, with 30 spacious rooms, many with terraces, that feature custom headboards outfitted with twinkly lights. The hibiscus- and camellia-lined courtyard off Bob’s Bar on the main floor is the best place to sip fresh mojitos paired with Iberian ham.

Calle del Barco, 3, 34-915-31-71-11


Florida Retiro

Top chef Joaquín Felipe Peira leads this newly renovated culinary complex that houses five restaurants and a performance venue in El Retiro Park. Start with a cocktail on the rooftop terrace, continue with fried calamari at the market kiosks and cap things off with shared plates at the sit-down El Pabellón.

Paseo de Panamá, Parque de El Retiro, 34-91-827-52-75


Plaza Mayor

Events are taking place at the slate-roofed grand square, which is surrounded by balcon-ied residences, all year long to mark its 400th anniversary. This month’s Words Markets (October 14, 28 and 29) pay tribute to the plaza’s history as a marketplace, but rather than typical fare, stalls will offer up a variety of word games.

Plaza Mayor, 34-91-454-44-10

Day Trip

Alcalá de Henares

Just 35 kilometres northeast of Madrid is this 16th-century university city and UNESCO World Heritage Site where Miguel de Cervantes, author of Don Quixote, was born. Tour his childhood home, then stroll the cobblestoned Calle Mayor, one of the longest streets with continuous porticoes in Europe.

Calle Mayor, 48, 34-91-889-96-54



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