A Night at the Opera in Madrid de los Austrias

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Classical coffee houses, restaurants, cocktail bars, ballrooms, an old market turned gourmet Mecca, and the huge Teatro Real opera house are all in the so-called Madrid de los Austrias (Hapsburg Madrid), an area with majestic architecture

Bordered by Segovia and Bailén streets, Cuesta de San Vicente, the Ópera square, Calle Arenal, Plaza Mayor and Plaza de la Villa, Hapsburg Madrid shows that the classic and the modern can live together in perfect harmony in Madrid.

Nightlife in this district moves around opera and bel canto performances at the Teatro Real. Intermission dining with an express menu is available at the opera house restaurant. But there’s much more to see and do in Madrid de los Austrias.

Housed in a beautiful early-twentieth-century building, San Miguel Market has undergone major renovation to become a modern culinary space that attracts lots of tourists. At the countless counter bars in the market, which has kept the stunning original glass and iron structure, you can order tempting plates or tapas, or attend tastings and events daily. Open until midnight, or 2am on Thursday, Friday and Saturday.

Outdoor cafés and restaurants catch your attention in Plaza Mayor, the elegant square in the heart of Madrid that gathers a host of street artists, as well as visitors and passers-by, day and night.

On Calle Arenal, the Joy Eslava theatre hall has become a household name in the Madrid nightlife scene. Open since 1981, it was one of the earliest huge clubs that attracted so many big names of the movida madrileña countercultural movement. Joy Eslava opens daily to stage concerts, stand-up comedy shows, and even alcohol-free evenings for teens, until 10pm.

In the streets around Plaza Mayor you can choose from many great places to eat. Many eateries recreate the atmosphere of Madrid’s underground cellars, with vaulted dining rooms. Some of them, like Las Carboneras in Conde de Miranda square, even stage flamenco shows that you can watch while enjoying dinner.

The latest trends in the area are marked by pubs and tea houses carefully decorated, like Anticafé on Calle Unión, with vintage furniture, or Moorish-style Yambala on Calle Coloreros.

Against the backdrop of Plaza de Oriente and the Royal Palace, Madrid de los Austrias at night is as versatile as are the arias staged in the opera house.


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