Popular toy store. online available too
C/ Jorge Juan, 75 MADRID
"Really lovely toy store with beautiful gifts. Lots of wooden toys, and some great quality dressing up costumes" (HB, Dec 2010)
J de Juegos
Family Business based in the Retiro area offering modern & Traditional Kids toys
C/Menorca 36, Esq. Fernan Gonzales 36 MADRID Tel: 91 574 59 03
and Camilo Jose Cela 16 ALCOBENDAS Tel: 91 661 34 05
"Really helpful staff. Cute, traditional toys, (Beautiful marbles!) and lots of Dideco, and Diset stock" (HB, Dec 2010)
Omnipresent store with emphasis on eco and environmental products
'Natura Love' C/ Velazquez 48 MADRID
"Great gift shop, with a crafty-funky feel. Knitwear, accessories and slippers in the front of the shop -Colours are teal, rasberry, grey, mauves, the rest of the shop stocks some good quality novelty items and a few recipe-lifestyle books" (HB, Dec 2010)
Fashion, homeware, gifts and kids. Can also shop online
´Musgo´ C/ Velazquez 48 MADRID
"Some lovely inexpensive jewellery, quite an world craft feel. Lots of pretty gift ideas such as picture frames, funky household ware, and a clothes section at the rear of the store" (HB, Dec 2010)
Perfect for 'Hello Kitty' obsessed children (or not).Also online
Cuore Rosa´ C/ Jorge Juan 74 MADRID
"EVERYTHING Hello Kitty! Not the cheapest shop in the world, but there are a few items for a couple of Euros, pencils, stickers etc." (HB, Dec 2010)
El Olivar de Ayala, Madrid
Traditional Spanish food cooked to a high standard, with a huge choice of tapas or raciones. Also a more formal menu. Reasonably priced,
C/ Ayala, 84 Madrid Tel: 915767764
"Love this large, yet comfortably arranged restaurant: Lovely staff, child-friendly (No high-chairs, but lollipops and patience)
Totally recommend the chipirones and the avocado and goats' cheese salad" (HB, Jan 2011)
C/Cañizares, 10, 28012 Madrid Tf.: 00 34 913 690 496
"This is a wonderful place to see/hear flamenco. We went on a Monday night and saw a really dynamic bunch of performers. Great musicians, passionate singers, and crazy fast dancing!
A 32 Euro entry fee will reserve you a seat at a tiny table, and includes a drink. There is a very traditional Spanish menu of tapas/raciones, and drinks are reasonably priced.
The seating is cramped and small, so if you are heavily pregnant, it might not be the most comfortable couple of hours.
Reserve in advance, as this is a popular place" (HB, Feb 2011)
Originally in Barcelona, this exciting shoe store now has an outlet in Madrid
C/ Jorge Juan 9, C/ Colon 3
"A really quirky range of hand made shoes. Not cheap, but good quality and unusual" (HL, Oct 10)
A stylish but quiet cocktail bar:
Conde de Xiquena 3 Tel: 915221813
A lively and informal bar specialising in arabian tapas
Espiritu Santo 15
An intimate and funky bar, with tapas available:
San Vicente Ferrer, 32
Cafe de La Luz
A very funky little bar, with a great selection of cool chairs!
C/ Puebla 8
"You may want to phone ahead if you want to book a table for drinks" (HL, Oct 10)
Mexican in theme with great snacks and cocktails. A good place to start the night...
Corredera Alta de San Pablo 13. Tel: 915225759
"Good cocktails, really lively and FULL of kitsch! -It's Mexican themed, and the owner has a great selection of retro music" (HB, Oct 2010)
Sewing & design workshops for kids
Mondays 5pm - 9pm
Tuesdays -Saturdays 11am - 9pm
Sundays from 10 am - 3pm
C/ San Pedro nº 7
Tel: 913 600 019
"This quirky fabric store/boutique/learning space is unique. Situated near Las Huertas, it caters for anyone interested in craft and vintage. The space is host to dozens of workshops, ranging from 'Fashion Men Workshop' to 'Lady Gaga Halloween Make-Up' and many Japanese crafts, including sushi-making and origami. There are also courses where children can learn some basics, and you can rent a sewing-machine, in-store. I believe they also hold 'Vintage Tea-Parties, where you can pop on your best frock and sip daintily!" (HB, Sep 2011)
Circulo de Bellas Artes
This well-known venue for music and the arts has a hidden secret. For a €3 fee, one can access the azotea, or roof-terrace. Truly spectacular views accross the centre of Madrid. You can see for miles, and I made myself green with envy, spying into all the roof-gardens.
Suitable for older children.
(Metro Banco de España)
"The ground floor houses a very reasonably-priced, but superbly belle-epoque cafe. Lots of renderings of naked ladies!" (HB, Aug 2011)
Parque El Capricho
A very tranquil park, perfect for a stroll with a buggy. This is more of a formal gardens, than Retiro. There are no swings/play areas, and it's more for strolling around than going crazy, but made a pleasant change.
Tel: 91 588 01 14
Metro: El Capricho (L5)
Bus: 101, 105, 151
Hours:Winter (October-March) Saturdays, Sundays and Festivos 09:00 a 18:30. Summer (April - September): Saturdays Sundays and festivos 09:00 a 21:00 horas. Closed 1st January and 25th December. The park also closes at 3pm on days when holding an event.
Paseo de la Alameda de Osuna
Alameda de Osuna, Barajas
Taberna Maceiras, Madrid
Taberna Maceiras is a Galician seafood restaurant in the Las Huertas district of Madrid.
Las Huertas 66, 28014 Madrid, Spain - +34 914 295 818
"It's rustic, jam-packed from 2pm onwards, and the menu is absolutely delicious seafood. Each time I've had lunch there, I've ordered WAY too much! Their 'Arroz' contains a hearty, moreish mix of mussels, prawns and chunks of fish, and their 'Merluz Relleno' is my favourite dish, so far....
€15 a head is enough to fill you up, and will get you a couple of ice-cold beers too. Go with a few friends, so you can try several dishes" (HB, July 2011)
Txa-Tei -Japanese Restaurant
General Pardiñas 8
"I had the best sushi I've tasted, outside of Tokyo.We had a menu del dia, at €15.95 +IVA. It was truly delicious, and more than enough food. The staff were very pleasant, and I can't wait to go back. Check out their website for a look at the menu" (HB, Aug 2011)
La Cocina de San Antón
Situated just behind Chueca's Metro station is a fabulous municipal food market.
As you expect from Chueca, the stalls' produce is displayed a little differently, and there's a fun atmosphere, with plenty of bars, much like Mercado San Miguel, but without the fancy arquitecture. On the third floor is a terrace bar and restaurant 'La Cocina de San Antón'
Modern Spanish food
Mercado de San Antón -food market
Augusto Figueroa 24
"A very busy and noisy informal modern restaurant, with a cool water mist falling from the ceiling.
We shared a selection of salad, mussels, and tortilla, which were all delicious, then I had a medio ración of langoustine risotto. We had plenty of food and wine, and spent about €35 a head. (Evening menu) Book ahead, as even mid-week, tables are hard to get" (HB, Aug 2011)
Kiko' is an Italian cosmetics brand with 3 shops across the city
37, Fuencarral, Paseo Florida, 2, Paseo Pontones, 20
"Very reasonably priced (About 5 Euros for an eyeshadow) Kiko cosmetics have the classy black packaging, as used by MAC and Sephora, but have an incredible range of colours, and are cheap enough, that you can try a trend out, without spending a fortune" (HL, Oct 10)
'Sisley' is a Benetton offshoot
"Great up-to-the-minute fashion, without being too immodest for those of us who aren't teenagers any more. Great detailing.
Reasonably priced, at about 40 Euros for a long-sleeved top" (HL, Oct 10)
C/ Narváez, 60
28009 Madrid, Spain
Tel 915 748 831
"I first went in with virtually no Spanish, but took a few photos cut from magazines. They took their time to understand me, despite the language barrier, and I have been going back ever since. Usually costs me about 60-70 Euros for a cut, colour and blow dry" (HL, Oct 10)