Archive for March 1st, 2013

March 1, 2013

Some news from Spain XI

Well been letting this tag kind of alone lately but its lively in Spain always. My latest finds to share with my readers are,

First , you have concerts from some of my all time favorites such as Merche, April 18 at Joy Madrid, 20€, at a nostalgic place whre Iused to go for theater plays when young, then a disco, then a nightclub of all, and the famous of Spain, more info

 Top it off with Alejandro Sanz, June 26/27 at palacio de los deportes, from 33€ to 235€ on sale at ticketmaster or El Corte Inglés stores.

You have Chenoa playing May 24 for 25/35€ with sales at El Corte Inglés and at Teatro Compac Gran Via,

of course in the Palacio de los deportes of Madrid you can see many things and I used to do fencing and volleyball there when young, now you can see the Real Madrid basketball team 7 times European Champion and on top of group in the euroligue this year. In the league official page, you can see the history of Real Madrid baloncesto or basketball,

Tabacalera, la Antigua Fábrica de Tabacos de Madrid, or the old cigars factory of Madrid was built between  1780 and 1792, Initially it was set up as  Real Fábrica de Aguardientes y Naipes or Royal factory of eau de vie  and game cards.  It served this way for a while before been change to a Fábrica de Tabacos y Rapé or factory of cigars and snuff in 1809 ,and kept the manufacture until the end of the 20C. Now from 2007 onward it is handle as a center of visual arts on the street level and basement the rest is used by other centers for diverse exhibitions.  It is located at Calle Embajadores,51 metro embajadores line 3 or cercanias train C5. It is open Tuesdays to Fridays from  12h to  20h. Saturdays, Sundays ,and holidays from 11h to 20h. Mondays closed.  You have a wonderful expo on painting,and architecture by José Manuel Ballester  until April 28;more info here

Do stop by Casa de América, at Cibeles 2 metro banco de España open from Mondays to Saturdays from 11h to 19h30, and Sundays from 11h to 15h,free admission.

Casa Europa at the old and wonderful Circulo de Bellas Artes or beaux-arts circle at calle marques de Casa Riera,and Alcala , metro banco de España,  more info here

Some of the best places to see Madrid my youthful city are, museo de Antropologia or Anthropology museum, Calle alfonso XII,  ,and the Biblioteca National or national library,  ;Casa de Lope de Vega, when young his were the books and stories we learned Spanish and our history; here is where the writer lived and died from 1610 to 1635, at Calle Cervantes 11 in a very Madrilene district nearest metro Anton Martin. free admission at the regional gov site, sorry its long and in Spanish,

The Cathedral of Almudena, guided visit for 6€, visit apart the chapel of the bishop for 2€;  the wonders of monasteries, such as monasterio de la Encarnacion, plaza de la encarnacion, metro opera, admission 7€ painting of Madrid and the Bourbons, and the more popular Monasterio de las Descalzas Reales, plaza de las descalzas, metro Sol, admission 7€ more info here

Museo de Cera or wax museum with nice history of Spain inside, near Colon Plaza. at paseo de los recoletos, metro Colon. 16€ more info here  The Lazaro Galdiano museum at Serrano 122, one of the most brilliant private expositions of paintings in Spain, Museo Casa Natal de Cervantes, this is where it is claimed Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra was born (the wter of Don Quijote)  at Alcala de Henares, more info

The palace of El Pardo, including the casa del principe Don Carlos, paintings including one of Queen Isabel the Catholic, ; the palacio Real,, and the Palacio Real de Aranjuez, ,and the palacio Real de la Granja at near Segovia, the Versailles of Spain,

The Planetario or planetarium of Madrid, ; Real Monasterio de El Escorial,  the Real Observatorio de Madrid, or astronomy with telescopes meridian, clocks, and mirrors including a pendulum clock from Foucault,

I won’t need to tell you about the triangle of arts that includes the Prado, Reina Sofia,and Thyssen-Bornemisza museums. But do take a look at the Museo Sorolla, general martinez campo, 37 metro Iglesias; free admission,and the best collection of this Valencian painter; wonderful place,  and do visit the museo Taurino behind the Ventas monumental bullfighting ring, metro ventas line 2 and 5, where I lived for four years nearby.  Calle  Alcala ,  237  just from the gardens,

And one of favorites areas for the cable car or teleferico to Casa de Campo, where you have a zoo,aquarium, attraction rides park,and just great. and  and right from paseo del pintor Rosales on the parque de la Montaña more known as parque del oeste you have the temple Debod, egyptian gift to Spain in 1968, from the gods Amon and Isis.

And last, I ate at Dehesa de Santa Maria, Calle Mayor, 88  a franchise chain all over Spain with tapas, hams,sausages, and beer/wine right at old Madrid near plaza Mayor ,slow service for a plate of four tapas and two beers 13,90€ the price was right, but not one I will be going back ::)

Enjoy Madrid and you know it life is beautiful, more so in Madrid ::)

March 1, 2013

Some news from France LXXXXVI

So here we are again, back from several trips and needed to say something about France.There is always something new when visiting or passing by Paris;and it won’t stop with me, I will be back end of march.

For those in the fashion and this is fashion week in Paris, you can go wrong to go here Save the Queen yes at 189 blvd Saint Germain, tel +33 (0) 1 45 44 14 62 and experience a theater style fashion shop , the chic and trendy of Paris, webpage

Go to the Hotel de Ville from now until July 6 and see the exhibtion on fashion, Paris Haute Couture, capital of fashion since the 19C. 5 rue de Lobau, more info here to see Dior,Chanel,Mlle Vionnet,YSL or Balenciaga ,

For the new pop electro romantic French singer seek out Benjamin Biolay and he will be in concert at the Casino de Paris,16 rue de Clichy from March 26-30, already with 7 albums out he is one to see,

Follow that up with pure romanticism at the musée d’Orsay, printing,sculpture,painting, the dark romanticism of the late 18C will be on display from March 5 to June 9. Don’t missed if you can ,more here

See if you can follow that up with the master from Honfleur Eugene Boudin at the musée Jacquemart-André.  the painter of lights, skies, that pave the way for the impressionists, as once Claude Monet said, “i owe it all to Boudin”, 60 of his work will be on display from March 22 to July 22. more info at

A nice property go up to rent and enjoy it ,Hotel Paradis, 41 rue des petites écuries, just near Sacre Coeur. You can enjoy its bar Le Pompon as I did, and the hotel visit but not stay ,deco by Dorothée Meilichzon, only 38 rooms, 1940 furniture and decoration from England, double room from 89€ suites for 194€ with a view of Sacre Coeur. more info

Back to my area of encounter with France, go to Meaux, the famous city of the cheese Brie de Meaux and Moutard de Meaux, it is even a inexpensive stepping stone to visit Disneyland, but there is something more serious and nice. The musée de la Grande Guerre or the museum of the great war, that is WWI. The most extensive collection of items from the times in Europe, from uniforms, vehicules, arms,recontruction of tranches, video presentation, and many diverse objects,only 40 minutes from Paris. more info here

For something delicious and very French why not a baguette, you can have the classic one at Boulangerie Mauvieux, 159 rue Ordener,+33 1 42 62 76 70 ,near metro Lamarck-Caulaincourt ,no web. winner in 2012 of the Best Baguette in Paris.  You can try Boulangerie Arnaud Delmontel, 39 rue des Martyrs, +33 1 48 78 29 33  the most creative with pumpkin seed , six grains,four seeds, linseed etc varieties, and a former winner of the The Best Baguette in Paris, with webpage Passing by the great gourmet Eric Kayser,8 rue Monge , +33 1 44 07 01 42 now with a branch at Orly airport too( Terminal Ouest salle 40) .

How to read Paris in 10 major works in French,Marcel Proust on DU Côte de Chez Swann, Patrick Modiano on Dans le Café de la Jeunesse perdue, Raymond Queneau in Zazie dans le Métro, and Bret Easton Ellis in Glamorama, also, Emile Zola in Le Ventre de Paris, Gustave Flaubert in l’éducation sentimentale, Guy de Maupassant in Bel-Ami, Louis Aragon in Aurélien, Antoine Blondin in l’humeur Vagabonde, and Victor Hugo in the Les Misérables.  and of course Ernest Hemingway in the movable feast, and newer Cuban Zoe Valdes on La Sous-développée.

And see if you can get in as I did once at the La Pléiade library where once a month the great thinkers read Proust,Camus,Malraux,Kessel,Aragon, Sartre, and more recents Jonathan Littell, Marie NDiaye,and Alexis Jenni.  they are elevated as sage or masters,and read more than 6000 manuscripts and books every month to be able to be publishes with the famous publisher Gallimard, the readers are rated over 1,5 they are discarted,and between 1 and 1,5 they are kept.  more info in French here and the various publication of its HQ Gallimard, here ,and more on it in wikipedia,

And what about those wonderful Parisien markets such as that of St Ouen marché aux puces, starting with antiques at galerie Glustin at 140 rue des Rosiers, or marché Biron at 85 rue des Rosiers at  or at 33 et 41 Rue Paul Bert,at  , and at 27 rue des Rosiers at  

And who said an airport is boring, when you can listen to live jazz at the Bar l’Astrolabe at Orly porte D departures, already try by yours truly and its a boundiful ambiance.  Every thursdays next is Didier Lockwood from 17-19h; this is great so be there early ::)

happy weekend everyone, cheers.

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