Madrid,Puerta de Alcala and Fuente de Cibeles

The two most emblematic symbols of Madrid for me. Why because I lived closed to the two for four years. If you need any more excuse. They carry the show me of a wonderful Madrid, and Cibeles is the symbol of my beloved Real Madrid FC, center of all its glorious celebrations as the best club in the history of the game.

A bit about the Plaza de Cibeles where the fountain or Fuente is located, its one of the most beautiful in Madrid.  It sits in the junction of Paseo del Prado,and Calle Alcala (my street !). The sculpture fountain is named after Cybil, the Greco-Roman goddess of nature, showing her sitting in a chariot drawn by lions. The design is from 1781 ordered by king Carlos III, and it once provided water to the citizens until 1862.  Around the square or Plaza you will see important buildings such as the Palacio de Communicaciones , once the central post office, and today its the mayor’s office of Madrid, built between 1905-1917. At the northeast side of the square you have the Palacio de Linares, built in 1875, now houses the Casa de America or House of America displaying a collection of paintings from Latin America artists. In the northwest portion of the square, you have the guarded Army headquarters which is house in the building of the old Palacio de Buenavista, first ordered built by the Duchess of Alba in 1777. On the opposite corner you have the Banco de España or the Bank of Spain, built between 1884-1891.  The Cibeles is the meeting place for all victories of the fame Real Madrid football/Soccer team every time any championship is won, which has been often. FIFA club of the 20th century and still battling for the 21st. Reach it on metro Banco de España line 2

The Puerta de Alcala , or arch door of Alcala . It is,was the grandest monument erected by king Carlos III in his attempt to improve the looks of eastern Madrid. Designed by Sabatini to replaced a smaller baroque gateway that was built by king Felipe III for entry into Madrid of his wife Margaret of Austria. The Gateway or door was built between 1769-1777 using granite in Neo-Classical style; it has five arches, three central and two outer rectangular ones. Until the 19C the gateway mark the city’s easternmost boundary; it now stands in the busy Plaza de la Independencia or Independance square.  In its central high panel on the attic of both sides you will read the Lation inscription “Rege Carolo III. Anno MDCCLXXVIII  (Being King Carlos III, year 1778). In the exterior inscription you will see a coat of arms held by Fame and Genius with children sculptures on both sides. In the interior facade on the lateral arches you will see four cardinal virtues such as Prudent, Justice, Balance, and Force.  Just at the plaza de la Independencia, you will have an entrance to the parque Retiro or Retiro park, and the church of Manuel and Benito, my hangout places.  Reach it on Metro Retiro line 2

The Madrid metro webpage is http://www.metromadrid.es/en/index.html

For tourist information in city of Madrid, webpage http://www.esmadrid.com/en/portal.do

For the tourist info in the Comunidad de Madrid or region of Madrid webpage http://www.turismomadrid.es/en/

Enjoy Madrid, as to Madrid to heaven and a hole in the sky to look down on it every day /Cheers

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