The movida madrileña spirit and alternative rhythms in Malasaña

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Known as a trendsetter, Barrio de Malasaña/Triball saw the birth of the earliest movida musicians and bands back in the Spanish transition era in the 1980s, when this countercultural movement came to life.

Malasaña/Triball stretches from Calle San Bernardo to Calle de Fuencarral, with Bilbao and Ruiz Jiménez small squares on the north and Gran Vía on the south. Along with the entrance to Tribunal underground station, Plaza del Dos de Mayo is one of the main meeting points for those who plan to go out at night in this area of Madrid, especially on weekends.

Rock, punk and indie pop provide the music for the so many 1980s-style venues in Malasaña. In the streets of this district, you’ll travel back in time to the years of the revolutionary break from Spanish musical past. You’ll also listen to international music that originated later, with roots in the underground movement.

Clubs like TupperWare, Penta or La Vía Láctea, on Calle de La Palma and Calle Velarde, and the Madrid Me Mata museum-bar all are frequented by a heterogeneous group of patrons, mostly young but also people who feel nostalgia for the old days of the movida, or artists and bands like Radio Futura, Los Secretos, Alaska, and many others. The terraces of the cafés around Plaza del Dos de Mayo can get quite busy too.

Contemporary character

But there’s more than music of past decades in this Madrid neighbourhood, as Malasaña is constantly reinventing itself. New nightlife venues mushroom, combining the modern and the alternative. In Malasaña, ‘cool’ is a meaningful word, and lots of visitors come to find out what it really means.

Quieter cocktail bars are undoubtedly worth a try, too. Along with the more traditional ones, new establishments with a touch of kitsch have recently opened in the Triball area, which underwent a renaissance in recent years. In addition, around Calle Luna you can dine or have a drink in the outdoor terraces lining sidewalks – an omnipresent city feature. Open since summer 2013, the GyMage lounge resort has a rooftop terrace affording spectacular views in summer or winter. With reasonable prices, it closes 2am on weekends.


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