Archive for July, 2017

July 31, 2017

Some news from Spain XLVIII

ok so back into Spain, this is the countdown 10 more days and I am in my Spain. Now here in beautiful Morbihan, there is sun and hot weather finally feels hotter but only 21C or about 69F. Down in Madrid it is gorgeous sunny and 89F!!!

Ok so now let me tell you a bit of the latest from the South….that is Spain here.

There is a lot history between the two countries not always nice, but this one it is. Between Irùn Spain and Hendaye France there is a river Bidasoa and in the middle there is an island Isla de los Faisanes in Spanish or L’île des Faisans in French (eng. Pheasants).  It only has 5000 square meters or 53 800 square feet of which 6 months each belongs to Spain and France! It is guarded each time by the commandant marine of San Sebastian (Donostia) and Bayonne.  The island is 215 meters long by 38 meters wide in an oval form filled with black poplar trees , low grass and stone megalith that reminds us of a moment in history when on November 7 1659 the Treaty of the Pyrénées was signed here putting an end to the 30 years war.  In one of the clauses of this treaty, the infant Maria Teresa of Austria daughter of king Felipe IV of Spain was to married king Louis XIV of France!

In the years to come many marriages and prisioners of both countries were exchange here mutually; some of which were there in 1659 were D’Artagnan captain of the musketeers, and the painter Diego Velazquez . The deal was that was a cessation to France that before they belong to Spain. However, 200 years later the Treaty of Bayonne of 1856 did finally divided the island by the two countries, when the erosion in the river caused the island to shrink to about 80 meters long and 5 meters wide. The two countries combined for the necessary work to make it splendid again to the size we see today. The gardening and cleaning of it is share as well between the city mayor’s office of Irùn and Hendaye. The only things does not exist in the island is pheasants as Victor Hugo wrote in 1843! More info in English here:

Continuing with the French Spanish connection, actress Jeanne Moreau is dead at 89 yrs old. Consider the grand dame of French cinema.  She was borne January 23rd 1928 of French father and English mother .She played under the best of France/Europe such as François Truffaut, Louis Malle or André Téchiné.  Orson Welles called her the best actress in the world!  and the first women part of the academy of fine arts in the history of France, pole bearer of the New wave and muse of directors such as  Elia Kazan and Luis Buñuel,of which she worked in  ‘Diario de una camarera’. In  2001 she was the first women member of the Academy of fine arts of Paris and the only actress presiding the Cannes film festival in two occasions. She played in movies such as  ‘Jules et Jim’ (1962) ,’La mariée était en noir’ (‘La novia vestía de negro’) (1967), of Truffaut, ‘La notte’ (‘La noche’) (1962), of Antonioni,or “Moderato Cantabile” (1960), of Peter Brook, that gave her the best female performer of Cannes. A great one passed away RIP.

The fields of lavander are gorgeous by Brihuega and Villaciosa de Tajuña . In summer , in the La Alcarria they are 10% of world production or about 1000 hectares, and the fields of these towns are full of them in July especially. 2000 kg of the plant each harvest ,and broken down into 250 hectáres for perfums, cosmetic, medicine, and restoration as well as about 750 hectares for decoration and perfums.  And you see the Festival of lavender of Brihuega again in July 2018:

More of the lavender in Spanish with guided tours here:

And this is summer festival abounds in my Madrid, and I look forward to them.

We have three main feasts or festivals such as those of  San Cayetano, San Lorenzo , and the Virgen de la Paloma, all of them in the districts of  Lavapiés and La Latina.  The first one are those of San Cayetano,next August 3rd,  but these can begin from today July 31st.

My favorite and the one I always went with my mother first, and now with my family is the Virgen de la Paloma in the Plaza de la Paja to Plaza de las Vistillas. There are from August 11 -15 in honor of the Virgin of the Pigeon or Virgen de la Paloma. Activities for the whole family.

This year the Asociacion de Empresarios de la Hosteleria de la Paloma (assoc of merchants of the hostelry of the Paloma) will begin even from August 4 to August 15 in the Ruta de la Tapa Slowfood (tapa route of slow food). Participating restos will be  ‘La burbuja que ríe’, ‘Casa Mateos’, ‘Los Ángeles’, ‘NdelT’, ‘Viuda de Vacas’, ‘Concepto Bistró’, ‘Bar Coto’, ‘Casa Antonio’, ‘Bar La Sixta’, ‘Bar Marathon’, ‘Mesón La Paloma’, ‘Mutxomas que pintxos’, ‘Tapioca Chill’, ‘Bar Txirimiri’, ‘Zaida 26’, ‘La petit Boheme’, ‘La Cervecería Lorena’ and ‘El Bombín de Sabina’. Everyday from 18h to 00H (midnight), you can take photographs with a local costume Chulapo/a if do not have the costume on. It will be done in the bar El Atril (gay bar) , calle de la Paloma,9. Also, the August 11-12 until OOH midnight there will be the the cry of the Virgin , sang by Pepa de Chamberî. Monday August 14 in Las Vistillas the show of La Verbena de la Paloma organized by the castizo association De Madrid al Cielo (the best show). Everyday there will be different musicals such as Catenca de Macao at 23h August 12th, Plaza de la Paja, and Mikel Erentxu at 22h45 August 15 in the Plaza de las Vistillas.  August 15 the festival will end with the traditional lowering of the portrait of the Virgin of La Paloma that will be at 14h15 by the firemen of the city hall of Madrid.  In the morning a floral offering of the Virgin from 10h in the front of the  school of La Salle-La Paloma, and after a solemn Mass at 13h in the Church of Nuestra Señora de la Paloma. In the afternoon at 20h a procession. More of it in Spanish from Madrid tourist office here:

El Capricho, is one of the prettiest park in Madrid but also one of the least known! It is done in the style romantic with a beautiful botanical , sculpture and artistic details . This green lung of Madrid hides one of the secrets of Madrid a bunker from the Spanish Civil War  unique in Europe in perfect state of preservation. It’s origins go back to the 18C when the aristocrat Doña María Josefa de la Soledad Alonso Pimentel, duchess of Osuna, decided to create a place for leisure and relaxation with nature. The park El Capricho is located in the Alameda de Osuna, just outside city limits, by Barajas. The bunker has  2 000 square meters built 15 meters below ground during the Spanish Civil War as well as the palace, dance room, and the ermite or chapel. The duchess of  Osuna is credited with many feasts, events and talks that shows the literary wisdom of the times as well as the promotion of the arts with many donations and shows presenting even the one and only Francisco de Goya–. In 1834, at the death of the Duchess of Osuna the park began to decline each passing year worse until in 1974 the city purchase the land and started renovating it. The work finished in 1999 and since then it is open to the public.  More here :

The wonderful Caixa Forum is exhibiting a great show coming from the British Museum that shows the beauty of the Helenic arts that the Beligian artists  Jan Fabre will be showing in the  Teatros del Canal.  Monte Olimpo, an spectacle of 24 hours where he will make the public relives what the Greek of yesteryear fell . The exposition entitled  Agón! La competición en la Antigua Grecia. The show opens with a beautiful statue of the goddess  Victoria Niké, and close out with fries fragment of the mausoleum or  Mausoleo de Halicarnaso,the giant tomb built by king  Mausolo de Caria in the year 350 BC. This monument was considered one of the 7 wonders of the old  world  and the first time the British Museum loans it out.  You see in this area room showing of sculptures from the funerary group such as a head of a lion, and two warriors, one Persian and the other Greek. Between the two rooms you will see many amphorae’s, vases, cones, and tablets that shows the daily life of the Greeks.  You will see the splendid corps of the statues with more than 2 meters high of a warrior and a discus thrower , this one a Roman version of 120-140 AC of a work credited to Naucides, known artists of bronze statues of the Olympic winners.  Lastly, do not forget the rooms dedicated to the wars loaded with military bronze with a Roman bust copy of Euripides, the drama writer from Athens that today we continue to show works such as Medea or the Las Troyanas,(Trojans). Show that even today we are not that different from those competitive and party Greeks of the past. Expo open until October 15 and admission is  4€. More here:

And to finish the post , some news on getting continents together. The company Hélity Copter Airlines will begin regular lines by helicopter. What was now a long tiring trip from Spain to Ceuta and other destinations in Africa ,now will be done in 10 minutes (trip Ceuta to Algeciras) to 25 minutes (trip from Malaga airport) . The flights will be done in a AW-139 chopper with 15 passenger and two crewmembers. The prices will be from 35€ to 150€ and the company ,also,offers sightseeing trips and private charters for business and individuals. More in Spanish  here:


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July 28, 2017

Some news from France CLXV

Never a day goes by without not been able to talk about France and Paris especially; it is eternal awaiting. Today was nice not too windy and temp in the 23C during the day now in the evening is 22C or about 72F lol!!! And the weekend is here!!!!

Some of the nice things about Paris ,France.

One of the classics the club Nüba now has been transformed into the  Communion. See the new look here and on Facebook:

The rooftop  of the Cité de la Mode et du Design  always offers you splendid views on the city.  The décor of the terrace on the roofstop changes every week with a new ambiance zen and impressive Tel +33 (0) 1 76 77 25 30 get there on Gare de Lyon or Gare d’Austerlitz. More info here:

Do you know Auteuil, ,,Paris? Well this is one area I know well as used to come by here with my car , yessss car into Paris center for many years… However, I did some serious walking as well ,and will tell you a bit of a walking tour you can take.

First ,you start at the Porte de Saint-Cloud (metro line 9) and go direction rue Michel-Ange. You will see along the way many buildings from the 1930’s. You turn right on the rue Parent-de-Rosan and you will see the old Auteuil, magical area with an eerie cementary wall done in 1800. Behind this wall , you can take a look into the subdivision of Villa Claude Lorrain and take a walk along the street rue Parent-de-Rosan to discover other charming subdivisions such as  Emile Meyer, Dietz-Monnin, and Cheyson.  You, then climb onto rue Boileau, a magical street of old Paris. Passing the boulevard Exelmans, (great one and not much walk by visitors) you will see further evidence of beautiful Paris with buildings such as the hôtel Danois, today the Embassy of Algeria.  Take a look at the Art Nouveau style of the Hôtel Roszé further up the street.  You will come to the neighborhood or hameau Boileau , and it’s famous Normand house, maybe you too will be lucky to find the folks there to give the digicode to go inside. Continue on towards the nice imposing Church Notre Dame of Auteuil that I passed so many times by car and on foot couple times into the rue Molitor and avenue Chardon-Lagache,where you will see the Metro entrance with a retro look . The Church here is a building in roman-byzantine style built in 1892.  Once inside , the sun light will shine at the end of the day and makes the interior very celestial romantic nice indeed.  While in the area do not forget to see the pool or Piscine Molitor, the hidden garden of the station, and try some wonderful chocolates at chocolaterie servant, while at the brasserie auteuil get a nice drink while playing in the central pool table and up its rooftop. Perfect Paris.

Some links on the above, the Church:

The pool Molitor in English here:

And the Chocolaterie Servant in English here:

The Auteuil Brasserie in English here:

The garden of Auteuil in French here:

And the mayor’s office of the 16 arrondissement/district of Paris of which Auteuil is now part since 1860.

And to continue on the lungs of Paris and the green peaceful spaces, here are more of my favorites over the years; working there and visiting too while living just nearby.

On the side of the cemetery or cimetière du Père-Lachaise  there is a hidden garden all natural (not so hidden now ::)) simply call the Jardin Naturel, at 120, rue de la Réunion (20eme).  open every day until 20h30. From the city of Paris in French metro line 2 takes you here and more photos:

You have another cute one small on the French style kind of hidden in the very public Marais. It is at the end of a small street with it’s back on the hôtel d’Ecquevilly (17C) old name, very romantic ambiance. Square Saint-Gilles Grand Veneur-Pauline-Roland  9, rue du Grand-Veneur (3eme). Open every day untl 20h30.More here from the tourist office of Paris in English:

And on one of the unique museums of Paris , the old Musée Guimet you have a tranquil place with basins, small bridges of stone and bamboo transporting you to the Rising Sun ambiance of Japan. You see the galleries of Budhist pantheons nearby to discover the art and culture of Japan as well, with tea ceremonies in all. Musée national des Arts Asiatiques Guimet, 6 place d’Iena, (16eme). More in French here:

You, then come to a more secluded garden in the square Roger-Stéphane just steps from the store Bon Marché . Several romantic corners and a basin with a small cascade.  Location at rue Récamier (7eme). Open every day until 20h30. More info in French from the city of Paris:

 And of course, until the garden on the rooftop of the store BHV Marais with a vertical vegetable garden  open until October every Wednesdays from 17h to 19h. BHV Marais Roof Garden, 52 , rue de Rivoli (4eme).  More info in English here:

A little jump back into another nice arrondissement district area of Paris I like for a walk or driving by. This is the new Clichy-Batignolles.

The origin of the name Batignolles has been difficult to determine for sure. It is thought of it comes from «bastidiole» meaning little country home, that later came to «Bastignolles» , and finally Batignolles. The land area covered from the forest of Rouvray to just outside Paris and a place for hunting until the French revolution. The village was attached to Clichy located just outside Paris city limits.  It gained importance because the people avoided paying a tax the Parisiens came here to drink on guinguettes or music hall houses. In early the 18C the secondary homes multiply for city folks to gain some country air! In 1830 Batignolles and Monceau were raised to a town and in 1860 detached from Clichy and attached to Paris. The arrival of the railroad change the district with the construction of the train station or gare Saint-Lazare (1842) and later the goods station of Batignolles (1844).

This is the area that grew in artistic fervor with the arrival to lived here of Edouard Manet helping as well the impressionists movement. His shop and house were here. Starting from 1870, they gathered at the Café Guerbois, 9 avenue de Clichy with his friends. Frédéric Bazille, also had his shop here and were visited by the Renoir, Cézanne, Sisley, Monet,and many others such as Emile Zola. At 11 avenue de Clichy in the house Hennequin, founded in 1830, you can find material on the artists of today. On the literature side, this district had visitors and renters such as Alfred de Vigny rented in 1838 at 1 rue Nollet, Paul Verlaine lived on the streets of rue Nollet, rue de l’Ecluse and rue Lemercie and buried at the cemetery of Batignolles.  Stéphane Malarmé lived at 89 rue de Rome where he received his friends Paul Verlaine, Oscar Wilde, André Gide, Paul Valéry, Paul Claudel, for his famous literary meetings the “Tuesdays at the Rue de Rome”.  Many performers are link to this district too, such as Barbara born at 6 rue Brochant, Jacques Brel lived at the  Cité Lemercier and creates his famous song  Ne me quitte pas here! Nowdays the extension of the metro line 14 and the new stations of bus stop,and RER will inevitably change the district in the future in full expansion . Let’s hope that the new does not change the old of it’s soul!! See it walk it while you can.  I stayed in hotels here and park for free while visiting the rest of the district and Paris !More in French with an interactive map on the right side here:

A pause on the historical wonderful eternal Paris. Let’s drive, train, bus over to Le Havre. This city is celebrating its 500 years! Call a summer in Havre or ” Un été au Havre”. Many events on the city previously wrote in my blog . Rebuilt after WWII from ashes (90% destroyed) it is now a city worth visiting into the real France ::) Many activities are programmed, you can see them all here in English:

This interactive map show you the many faces of Le Havre in French:

The calendar of events per month and activity are here in English:

And my personal visit to Le Havre entry in my blog with photos here:

To finish this post, something I like all my life, inspired even to know about Paris , Madrid, Key West, and Havana, the great Ernest Hemingway. Some of his spots in Paris are here to follow as July 21st was his birthday.

Ernest Hemingway dream of participating in WWI but could not come due to his myopia condition; therefore he enlisted as a volunteer in the Red Cross and did participate this way in the Italian front. He was wounded in his thighs by an Austrian rocket during his service and was came home a heroe in 1919. In 1921 after marrying Elizabeth Hadley Richardson, he decided to come  to France to continue his writing skills honing as a correspondance for the Toronto Star in Europe. This was a great timing as in the 1920’s Paris was the Eldorado of Americans.

In Paris, Hemingway discovered the new lectures and work on his style on the side of such influential personnages as Sylvia Beach, Ezra Pound, James Joyce, and Gertrude Stein that take him under their wing. He lived for a while in a hotel of the 6eme arrondissement/district; the Hôtel d’Angleterre, 44 rue Jacob (6eme). Full of history and still standing there, webpage here:

The Hemingway , also, lived on a small T2 one bedroom apartment in the 74, rue Cardinal Lemoine(5eme) (now building with 21 apartments on 5 floors)  from 1922-1923. At street level or first floor of the building there was a music hall and it was nearby the Place de la Contrescarpe.  It is on this apartment that Hemingway wrote amongst others the novels  “My Old man”  and the famous “Paris est un fête” ( a movable feast) the later posthume that tells his crazy years in Paris.

 Created by Sylvia Beach an American  librarian and editor in 1919, the library boutique came rapidly a point of research and encounters by the English and American writers that lived in Paris. here Hemingway borrows and buys many books,and discovered Tolstoi, Dostoievski, Eliot, Joyce, but also, Flaubert, Stendhal, and Henry James. At the times the library company  Shakespeare & Company was located at 12 rue de l’Odéon, but today it is located at 37 rue de la Bûcherie, (5eme). webpage :

Also, Adrienne Monnier the companion of Sylvia Beach opened in 1915, a library at 7 rue de l’Odéon (6eme) , the house of friends of books sort of my amateur translation of  «La maison des amis des livres».  The libray also lent books and regularly organizes séances of public lecture.  Today, it does not exits anymore (today building of 12 apartments in 5 floors) but you can stop by to imagine the story and the cultural dynamist of the times.

You,can also, stop by Chez Lipp for a potato salad and a beer or at Pré-aux-Clercs where the menu was 12 FF and a bottle of wine 60 cents!!! WAS, not anymore !!! Brasserie LIpp, 151 boulevard Saint-Germain (6eme), Le Pré-aux-Clercs, 30 rue Bonaparte (6eme).

The encounter of Hemingway with Gertrude Stein,  an American poet, writer, dramatist, and feminist made great teaching on the automatic writings as Hemingway normally did not remember than what he wish to remember , however thanks to her and those of Ezra Pound , he ends by discovering his own style. Gertrude Stein is today known to have participated in the development and diffusion of the literature and modern art. It was her who shape the young artists as a lost generation for the mores of the wars. Her apartment in Paris was at 27 rue de Fleurus (6eme) ;now a building with 26 apartments in 6 floors.

Paris is eternal, see it at least once in your lifetime, and then…..dream on, you will be back, and like me for good ::) in France.

Enjoy your weekend, we do not know where we are going, lol! last minutes travelers ::) Cheers

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July 26, 2017

Some news from Spain XLVII

Talking about my trip to Spain next month, well it’s the best time and hard to wait! temps here are cloudy,rainy, and cool 19C about 64F….

So now it’s time to speak about Spain .

The museum of El Prado is getting ready for it’s 200 years anniversary (1819-2019). There are many offers on the table to coincide with November 19 2018 that will have the pinotheque opens with programs like “De gira por España” or the  “El Prado Itinerante“. The museum will lent important works by a period of one month to several renown institutions; one for each autonomous region of Spain ,including Ceuta and Melilla, except  Madrid, in the program  “De gira por España”. The “El Prado Itinerante”, will have the exposition of  “Las Meninas”, that will be installed in a vehicle to do a tour of Spain as an homage to the Museum of the People and the republican pedagogics with the opening shortly of the Jonic Gallery or  Galería Jónica with classic sculptures.  In addition, nine new rooms of the Flemish and Dutch sculpture of the 17C in the second floor north of the museum ,therefore making the entire building of  Villanueva dedicated to expositions.  All is preview for the opening of the bicentenary on November 19 2018.  “Circa 1819” will the start of the event with 75 paintings done before or after the foundation of the Museum of El Prado with painters such as  Goya, Géricault, Turner, Friederich ,and Delacroix, that will be on from November 2018 to March 2019. Also, in 2019  there will be other expositions such as on  Velázquez, Rembrandt , and the Golden centuries of Spanish and Dutch paintings  in collaboration with the museum  or Rijksmuseum of Amsterdam; also, Goya Dibujos, Fra Angelico and the origins of the Florentine renaissance , Sofonisba Anguisola-Lavinia Fontana, two models of women artists and El triunfo de la muerte de Pieter Brueghel el Viejo. Exciting, you read it here first ::)

Much more sooner, this summer art in Spain.

The Festival Internacional de Teatro Clàsico de Mérida. 6 new shows with 7 montages and a historical moment for the 63rd edition of this festival that will look at the origins of our society; from the Democracy, Politics etc. Going on until August 27th. More here:

The Festival Internacional de Teatro Clàsico de Almagro, under the theme “Respira Festival” in its 40th edition. About 50 companies from 13 countries and 102 representations of which 25 will be first time showing.  The premier of  ‘La dama duende’, of Calderón de la Barca with the  Compañía Nacional de Teatro Clásico to open the festival. In it you will see shows on Shaskespeare, Quevedo, Cervantes, Lope de Vega or Molière etc. You will see Cervantes in  ‘Las verdaderas aventuras de Don Quijote de la Mancha’ and ‘El rufián dichoso’,from the Fundación Siglo de Oro. Also, for the first time, the complete  ‘El divino Narciso’,  of  Juana Inés de la Cruz; and the musical comedy  ‘La Calderona, The Remix’ on hip hop beat with DJ included!;  ‘Eco y Narciso’, one of the work less seen of Calderon.  To finish the “ Sueños” and “La Ternura” by the Teatro de la Ciudad ; ‘Cyrano de Bergerac‘; ‘La vida es sueño‘ from the Teatro del Temple or the classic  El Brujo. And more, to celebrate the anniversary of scene classics or ‘Clásicos en escena’ in the Plaza Mayor to more than 40 artists that had played in this golden age classics. All until July 30th,wonderful to see!!!  more here:

The Festival de Teatro Clàsico de Olite. In its 18th edition with new director. Starts at the Palacio Real or Royal Palace with “Cuando el amor habla, el corazón canta’, (when love talks, the heart sings), a spectacle with wordings from Tirso de Molina, Calderon de la Barca or Francisco Quevedo  ; a fusion of poetry ,and baroque music; until August 5th: more here in Spanish :

And my favorite; “Me vuelves Lorca” (give me back Lorca), in its 3rd edition in the Granadine Alpujarras inspired all by Federico García Lorca, and host by the village of  Laroles. You have music by Jorge Pardo and Juan Perro  with scenic propositions of the women of  El Vacie, and their ‘Fuenteovejuna‘  and with an impressive monologue of “El minuto del payaso’ by Luis Bermejo.  To complete the programming the dance of Belen Maya and Israel Galván  with the improvision of the Jamming Compañía with  ‘Jamming On Tour’. From July 28 to August 12; more info here:

New tools on the digital world; You know today there are 167 000 km of roads in Spain of which only a bit more than 10% or about 17000 km are motorways/expressways multi lanes. However, this 10% is 94,3% of all the traffic (source Ministerio de Fomento 2015).  Now you have many routes you can track down and do such as the town of Basi in Sant Martin del Castañar (Salamanca); Madrigal de las Altas Torres (Avila) or the Cathedral without name in Villacastin (Segovia).  You can participate in this new tool in instagram at  #LaGuiaInolvidable publish your new found places with a photo and location or send it to . You can request the guide free on the webpage

The river Arlanzón had made possible the city of Burgos, like many other cities that has a river going thru its center. And the artery that connects all the monuments of the city. From one end to the other, we have the Cartuja de Miraflores (monastery and hunting ground of king Enrique III);on the other side the monastery or Monasterio de las Huelgas, 12C. In between you have the park or parque de la Isla, the Paseo de los Cubos ,and Paseo del Espolón, the gothic Cathedral, and the post office building or  Correos y Telégrafos, the museum or Museo de la Evolución Humana, the statue in bronze of El Cid,and the convent of San José. And of course, the Castle or Castillo, that keeps an eye on the city from the hill or cerro de San Miguel.  Over the river you have the bridge or puente de Malatos, and puente de Santa María (best way to enter the city is under the gate of the same name) , and the Puente de San Pablo. One of the loveliest city of Spain, historical strong Burgos.  The tourist office here:

And as we reach the summer especially in Spain, what about those pools!!! or piscinas,  they are great for locals and visitors are welcome to stop by, it will be a great experience. Some of the best ones for me are:

The pool of Gymage located at calle de la Lune, 2  is open from 11h to 18h. You can have a drink later on , it has a white décor and plants all over . Admission is 12€ from Mondays to Fridays, Saturday and Sundays is 19€. More info here:

Then, you have something more youthful at the UCM pool, all kinds of interaction here with many young people from the University. Folks are towel to towel cramp here but a lot of fun If young at heart. It is located at avenida Obispo Trejo, s/n ;Tel +34 91 3941174.  Until September 6th open from 11h to 20H, daily admission is 4€ or 10 visits for 25€, 15 visits for 40€ ; weekends holidays it is 6€. More from Madrid tourist office here:

You, also, can visit the municipal pools managed by the Comunidad de Madrid. These are the Canal de Isabel II (Avenida de Filipinas, 54), San Vicente de Paúl (Calle Pelícano, 4) , and Parque Deportivo de Puerta de Hierro (Carretera de La Coruña, km 7), open from 11h to 20h open until September 10th and admission of 5,50€. You can purchase 10 visits for 50€ with discount for kids, mobility impaired,  and families . Opening from 11h to 21h such as the  Estación de Hortaleza, 11-13. Tel. +34 913 821 965. admission 4,50€  from Mondays to Fridays no holidays

Best of the them my opinion here: b0c40971c010VgnVCM1000000b205a0aRCRD&vgnextchannel=9b08151c238fe410VgnVCM2000000c205a0aRCRD

In a hotel, a nice one is hotel Emperador, in the Gran Via, you can purchase an entry even if not staying in the hotel, if space permitting. Open from Mondays to Thursdays for 48€ , Fridays and weekends/Holidays for 63€. Menu and admission to pool from 14h30 Mondays to Thursdays for 68€ five passes  from Monday to Thursdays cost 215€ ; the terrace is open from 10h to 21h:more info here:

Another nice municipal pool and one went for my boys is at Vicente del Bosque pool, in the district of Barrio del Pilar not far from Vaguada shopping center. Calle Monforte de Lemos, 13 tel +34  913 147 943. Admission is 4,50€  from Mondays to Fridays not Holidays.  More info here :

And a nice gymnasium pool is at Virgin Active Capitan Haya, natural lighting and nice pool with controlled temperature. You can take Aquagym classes or aquchasatic training custom made for you.  It is located in the district of Tetuán,  Calle del Poeta Joan Maragall, 1 (Antigua Capitán Haya). Tel. +34  917 70 58 91. Hours Mondays to Fridays from 6h30 to 23h , Saturdays/Sundays/Holidays from 9h to 23h. The only catch you also need to be a member, but you get one day free to try it . More info here:

Lastly , something useful for the seafood lover in me or you, and oysters. We have good ones in Spain too ! the oysters traditionally are consumed in the month with R or from September to April. However, modern days innovation make them available year around due to harvest oysters even if quality is inferior. I do not buy harvest oysters , period.

To open them you need some practice and precaution as well as using a proper knife , an oyster knife, wide and short with hand protection.  You need to introduce it between the shells , closer to the bottom end to cut the muscle.  You can buy them already open or do it yourself; we go to the coast here and get them closed but sometimes we had them open it if in a hurry. You need to feel the weight of them in your hand and they must be humid to the touch. They need to be really closed and when you knock them against each other  the sound should be dry and deaf ,no noise.

If you take time between the purchase and the consumption better to place them with the bottom side up and on the bottom section of our fridge covered with a wet towel and not to heavy so they won’t open up; the ideal temperature should be about 8C  or about 46F. When you open them you should smell them and throw out those smelling bad odor.

You can eat them as is with maybe a drop or two of lemon juice. Place them on a dish full of ice and on top the oyster facing up to do about a dozen at a time. There are many other ways to eat them , I just gave you the traditional way and the way we eat them. They are great as an entrée with Muscadet or Sancerre, Chablis types wines. Enjoy them !!!

Until next time in the Spainish waves. Enjoy your week, cheers.


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July 25, 2017

Some news from France CLXIIII

And now back to normal time ,killing time for my big summer French vacation in Spain ::) I will tell you surprising weather has come back without rain, some sunshine and temps in the 23C or about 73F in my neck of the woods….

Some of the things happening in my belle France.

Going over the dire state of the French rail system , losing money on the TGV and still trying to avoid roads into Paris lol! Read this in the Le Parisien newspaper; my translation.

The SNCF  will publish next Friday the accounts for the last  quarter showing a return of passengers to the TGV , even if this influx will not make it come out of the red.  According to the newspaper, after several years of stagnation or lowering traffic, the domestic traffic has increase of 8,4% in the first quarter comparing same period in 2016.  This is due to the implementation of the rates for the under 26 years old call  TGVMax with an unlimited destinations as well as  picking off rush hours pricing.  In the sector South-East  (from Paris towards the Alpes and the Mediterranean), the rate of occupancy has reached 88 % !  The TGV  fully loaded several days in advance are numerous. However, the profitability has eroded year after year  with the high frequency of  high tariffs for the railings asked of the network  SNCF Réseau (ex-RFF), who handles all the infrastructure on rails to have the trains run.  Face with this increasing debt (reaching 44B €!), up due to also lower subventions by the government; the  SNCF Réseau has try to increase its earnings with the only lines that can do this, the TGV.  However, the TGV alone is 2B € in the red . More than two thirds of lines are in deficit and the marginal space operated by the TGV has been cut in half, reaching just 630M € in 2016.  They will need twice that for them to finance their operations and buy new rail lines  to modernize the system.  For economies, the company has cancelled year after year trains on the lines in deficit but this rate kills the growth. The goal for 2018 is to find how to bring the margins back in the TGV at around 20%, to bring an additional 700M € additional per year. Started in 2013 the line Paris to Barcelona  could go through a reduction in service and lower the frequencies that is share with Spain’s RENFE that takes about 6 trains per day in vacation times and 3 the rest of the times. The line Paris-Geneva, share with the Swiss Railroad under the label Lyria , is in the same situation.

There will be a great looking back on Steve McQueen in the gallery or galerie Joseph, 116  rue de Turenne. Bringing many facets of the actor, great fan of speed and car collector. Expo until August 30th. More here:

A new hotel , talking about the Hôtel National des Arts et Métiers, only 600 meters from the Centre Pompidou, with 66 rooms, a trattoria, a cicchetteria (Venetian tapas) , bar with cocktails, the L’Herbarium.  All done with cement, granite, terrazzo and hard wood. More here:

With more than 200 works of art from Van Gogh projected in the walls of 12 meters high in the Grande Halle de la Villette to invite you into the passages, village scenes , wheat fields, and sunflowers of the painter.  This exposition is to discover the work of his last three years of his life. Wonderful.  Until September 10th, more here:

From where came the Dragons? A vast subject to discover in 4 000 m2  of exposition space. The  DragonLand  takes you in to discover this phenomenon and from theory to practice with explanations. You will discover 30 dragons in animation.  In the Paris Expo, porte de Versailles, until September 3rd. More in English here:

And many times, people ask me where to see Paris from above? Well many places really, these are some of my favorites. Enjoy Paris, always eternal.

You see her white silhouette high in the hill of Montmartre  in the 18  arrondissement/District of Paris. The view from the Sacré-Cœur over the roofstops of Paris is Worth the climb.  Some, like me think is one of the best if not the best.  From the steps of the Basilica built in the end of the 19C, Paris looks infinite. See more here:

WE go by the rue Georges-Lardennois or the stair on the avenue Simon-Bolivar, this is the Butte Bergeyre , 19 arrondissement/district that ends with  about hundred meters high.   At the summit in a range of trees you see the arrows of  Sacré-Cœur de Montmartre. At this height you should know it’s name came from a stadium named after Robert Bergeyre,  a rugby Player killed at the age of 20 early in World War I.  The hill opened in August 1918, today the sport complex is gone but it held the France Cup of football/soccer in 1920. More here in English:

You go to the park or parc de Belleville and you can see the Beaubourg, (centre Pompidou) where you see the tubes/pipes of it, and behind the golden dome of Invalides. From here you can continue seeing the stars of Paris , such as the Library or Bibliothèque François-Mitterrand, and the tour Eiffel ,and all the way to Mont Valérien ( the highest point and a great view of Paris, my favorite) . You can see the Church of  Notre-Dame-de-Paris,and it’s square towers as well as the tour Montparnasse; with a keener eye you can see on clear days the Sorbonne , and the palais de Chaillot! More here  :

The magical rooftop of the Institut du Monde Arabe is freely accessable  and guarantee quiet place at 77 meters high. You can see the Cathedral de Notre-Dame-de-Paris and the island or île Saint-Louis. At the Zyriab you can taste the mint and oriental sweets. This is at 39, Boulevard Saint Germain , 5th arrondissement/district ; Tuesdays to Fridays from 10h to 18h and weekends and holidays until 19H. More here:

You can go to the Parc de la Villette, and do a stop at the Philharmonie de Paris where the roofstop is freely accessable. Take the monumental stairs with metallic covers and on the third floor the elevators/lifts will carry you to the third floor or parvis/ belvédère. You have reach the artificial hill of architect Jean Nouvel. The view is almost 360° on Paris.  You see a range of trees with modern buildings but farther you see the tour Eiffel and tour Montparnasse on one side.  On the other side you see outer Paris such as Pantin, Aubervilliers, and Les Lilas. The location is Le Belvédère de la Philharmonie de Paris, 221 avenue Jean Jaures, 19 arrondissement/district. You can climb from Wednesdays to Sundays  from mid day to 20H. More info here:

One of the newer shopping centers or malls in Paris that I visit just after initial opening is now booming! the centre commercial Beaugrenelle , 15 arrondissement/district. The hot weather and rainy days has put the numbers of visitors up here.  From this past June the increase in frequency has been from 15 -20 %, with sales growing at 15- 25 %.  The best sales are the ice creams !!! juice bars, and ready to wear/prêt-à-porter. The mall has 50 000 m2  of space for stores; just great while in Paris.  And you have sales until August 8th. More here :

 Last but not least for this post is about a town close to where I used to lived. Saint Germain en Laye. The city has received the prize on the 23rd edition of the contest « Les Rubans du patrimoine »  for the restauration of the ramps of the caves or Grottes , that were one of the last vestiges of the Château-Neuf (where louis XIV was born and today the castle is gone); the castle there call the vieux is now housing the archeological museum. The city  finally restored the walls of Lions or mur des Lions in 2016. More on the gone castle in French here:

On the ramp in English here:

Enjoy France, it is the eternal from which Paris is just the beginning of heaven ::) Cheers


July 18, 2017

Some news from France CLXIII

And we are on the 18 July 2017, and cool not much sun, heavy rafts of rain and thunder wow;big thunders, lights went out in my job’s cafeteria/lunch room!!!  Anyway temps got to 30C and now a cool 23C or about 75F. And tomorrow will be cooler around max 68F !!!

What is going lately in my belle France well ,here are some updates:

Night evenings and workshops on gardening are organize all summer long here at Café Renoir inside the museum or Musée de Montmartre, 12 rue Cortot (18eme) open everyday from 12h to 18h, admission 4€. More info here:

On the occasion of the Transalpine immigration program Ciao Italia, the Palais de la Porte Dorée will have a big parvis terrace with the best from the Dolce Vita. The palais is at 293 avenue Daumesnil (12eme) until October 15 Wednesdays, to Sundays, and from midday to midnight. More here:

The above on Le Figaro in French on the Italian immigration from 1860-1960 where 2 million of them reach France.

The Mona Bismarck American Center open for the first time in summer with a musical program dedicated to the pop culture USA.  DJ  and groups will be live with cinema projections all taken care by Bonhomie with food and cocktails. 34 avenue de New York (16eme) until end of September and from Tuesdays to Saturdays  18h to 02h and Sundays to midnight More here:

The grand magasin Au Printemps Haussmann continues with its renovations.  After the move of the Mode Homme (mens fashion) in the rue du Havre to a building in the boulevard Haussmann , followed by the renovation of the L’Enfant (children) and la Maison  (house deco),now its the turn of the cosmetic beauty space or Beauté  to renovate itself. The new space is dedicated to perfums and cosmetics open its door Monday. It has created the space in a building in the rue de Provence and rue de Caumartin with 3 000 m2  space in three floors !! More in French here:

One of the prettiest terrace in Paris is also, one of the most hidden. You have to climb and descend to the Seine river facing the tour Eiffel and entered in the Palais de Chaillot as going to the museum or musée de l’Homme, and continue.  Daytime is sompteous and nighttime with the light on the Eiffel is sublime. Enjoy the Le Café de l’Homme, open every day from 12h to 14h at  17 place du Trocadéro (16eme), Tel +33 (0) webpage:

And if you descend the stairs along the bridge or Pont Alexandre III on the left bank to come into the Faust terrace, unique space with a view of the Tour Eiffel, the Grand Palais, and the pont des Invalides. Le Faust, open everyday from 12h to 14h with DJ from 19h, dancefloor dancing on Fridays and Saturdays until 06h00 . At Pont Alexandre III (7eme) tel +33 (0) Webpage:

High on a building in the Ménilmontant ,the Perchoir has  a great terrace, with patient on street level with a long line of guests always ready to come here. The plus is once inside the views over the roofstops of Paris is sublime with the lights of the Church of Ménilmontant and further the Basilica of Sacre Coeur. Le Perchoir, Mondays to Wednesdays from 18h to 02h, Thursdays and Fridays from 16h to 02H and the weekend from 12h to 02h; at 14 rue Crespin-du-Gast (11eme) Tel +33 (0) Webpage here:

From now you can enjoy the swim in the basin de la Villette (19eme). IT will open at 13h the first swim site in the city. It is a floating structure with 100 meters long split into three spaces and a beach with cabins, showers, palms all in the quai de Loire on the south side of the basin. It is with free admission every day from 11h to 19h until the end of Paris plage 2017 September 4th. For security reasons,the entry will be limited and with order; no more than 300 swimmers at a time and no more than 1000 each day. More on Paris beach and the swim at Villette here in French.

A phenomenon in Paris, the bicycle or Vélib/ This is already 10 years of the Vélib since July 15 2007 when JCDecaux started it. Some statistics. 305 648 members, 324 millions rentals, 1225 stations in Paris and suburbs; 39 944 attachement stations for bikes, 18 162 available bikes; 97 197 average usage per day, and 17,2 minutes the average time of usage. More info here:

And for next year November 2018 the Festival International du Film , a new name in Compiègne for the centenary of the WWI peace or Armistice. This is for this year webpage:

The Château du Plessis-Brion opens again in summer. From this coming Friday to August 31st you can see the castle with foundations of a feudal fortress that you can tell better in the gothic cellars and other parts from early 16C.  It is the only renaissance castle in the Oise region and this year for the first time you will have treasure chases for the kids. Le château du Plessis-Brion, 2, rue de l’Eglise. Open every day except Mondays from 9h30 to 11h30 and 14h30 to 17h ,admission are adults 5 €. Tél. +33 (0) More info here:

the latest expansion of France’s treasures is the Centre Pompidou to open temporarely in 2019 at Shanghaï ; in the district of West Bund –Xuhui. An art district of Shanghaï  that extends over several kilometers on the west of the city along the quais of the river Huangpu.  In this same area you have the well known museum of the célèbre Yuz Museum ; more here in French:

And last but not least, the aviary and the palmarium are all advantages that add to the splendor of the botanical garden. The whole thing is covered, so you can get lost regardless of the mood of the weather.  Parc Floral, Jardin Botanique de la Ville de Paris3, avenue de la Porte-d’Auteuil (16eme). From 8h to 16h on weekdays and 9h to 17H the weekends and Holidays. More here:
Enjoy your week, I have one day tomorrow and then off to welcome an old friend from USA visiting Brittany for the first time ever lol! Breton galore!!! Cheers




July 13, 2017

Some news from France CLXII

ok so the weather has tame, and it is cooler and humid some sunshine in the afternoon; but we are enjoying a long weekend. Tomorrow is National Day in France ,July 14, for some visitors it is known as Bastille Day.

Even President Trump of the USA is in Paris. Invited by French President Macron for the centenary anniversary of US troops entering WWI in France. They will be a parade from 10h ; where the 1st Infantry Division US will march first along the avenue Champs-Elysées. And the US Air Force Thunderbirds will do a fly over. I just took one photo from my TV for representation of the event.


Activities at the Grand Arch de la Defense, from 21h30 with 15€ admisssion;

The Panthéon celebrates the Republic from 13h to 19h free admission.more info here:

FG Garden Party at the Hippodrome de Saint Cloud (92) from 17h to 02h, admission from 8€; more here:

Grand Bal under the roof of the Grand Palais from 20h free admission with reservation. More here:

Concert du Champs de Mars from 21h to 23h free admission, and in front of the Tour Eiffel firecrakers from 23h to midnight  ,free admission

And of course, my beloved Versailles ,more traditional French; the Louis XIV spectacle , the king of fire in the Chateau de Versailles from 22h admission 75-110€.  There will fireworks in Versailles !!! More here:

Tomorrow evening Friday you should be in Aligre ! giant concert with more than 50 musicians of the Orchestre de chambre de Paris with a show name  « Grand Ensemble » it will be from 19h and 21h More in French here:

Colette ,213 rue Saint-Honoré , the historical store will be closing by December 2017. The original family is still there with Colette Roussaux , and her daughter  Sarah. they started in the area of Sentier by Colette and her daughter coming out of the school or École du Louvre, to joined her mother and founded the store. A Paris institution store and so sad will be closing its doors. webpage here:

In its 24e édition, Paris Jazz Festival will invites you to the Parc Floral  until July 30th. More here:
Henri Manguin ,the Joy of Color at Giverny ,musée des Impressionismes. Until November 5. more here:
The chocolates in same address but in a courtyard , the great Jean-Paul Hévin, 231 rue Saint-Honoré (1st); open every day except Sundays, Tél. +33 (0)1 55 35 35 96.

The grand terrace of 180 persons in the calm of the garden of Louvre with Italian cuisine in the Loulou, Musée des Arts décoratifs, 107, rue de Rivoli (Ier).  Open every day. Tél. +33 (0) 1 42 60 41 96.  webpage in Facebook

Check out the expo in the musée jeu de Paume, from “La vie Folle” of Ed Van der Elsken to the contemporary art of Oscar Murillo of Colombia; see it

Shops to learn starts at the museum or Grand Musée du parfum; 73 rue du Faubourg-Saint-Honoré, Tel +33 (0) 1 42 65 25 44.

70 years of Christian Dior in Paris: The story a designer of dreams in the Musée des Arts  Décoratifs, 107 rue de Rivoli (1st) until January 7 2018; from Tuesdays to Sundays and from 11h to 18h . Webpage here:

And we used to go to El Rancho a Tex Mex resto next to the rive gauche train station in Versailles. Since, closed for several years and now a controversial KFC is open there lol!

From my gallery photo of the old El Rancho of Versailles.

And of course, there are others, we have been to the ones in Franconville, Vélizy, and Flins as well. The official webpage is here:

And I leave you here, as need to get ready for the 14 July. My town has a good program . Enjoy your end of week, me a long 3 day weekend ahead. Cheers

July 6, 2017

Some news from France, CLXI

Once again back to my dream France, not just because I like it  ;I am a citizen too sin :!!ce 2000. The temps here are getting hotter and temps hovering around 32C and inside my car leaving yesterday from work was 38C, very hot over 90F in all. However, the mornings are cooler humid and cloudy, it starts getting hot by 3PM (15H). And it is call to be the same for the rest of the week!

Now, some news from my France. Starting with my local area of course!

July 5, 2017

Some news from Spain XLVI

And here I am again back to my beloved Spain, and to tell you of the latest. The summer is already here and I can’t wait for August in Spain !!!

Some of the actions there are:

The wonderful water parks with the top in Tenerife ,the Siam Park chosen for the 4 year in a row as the best water park in the World by TripAdvisor surveys.  However, there are other nice waterparks in Spain such as Aqualandia in Benidorm 2nd place in Spain, Then, you have Water World in Lloret de Mar in 3rd place in Spain and named the best aquatic attraction in the Costa Brava; others were the Aquapark Flamingo in Alicante, port Aventura Caribe Aquatic Park in Salou ; Aquopolis Costa Dorada in La Pineda, Aqua Brava in Roses, Aquapark Ciudad Quesada in Alicante, Aqua Natura in Benidorm,and Parque Acuàtico  Aquarama in Benicassim.

See the new Centro Botin designed by Renzo Piano ,which,you can enjoy while the exposition on the artist Carsten Höller is on. This is a round bed for two persons that comes equipped with all the amenties of a luxury hotel. Elevator bed has its own rotating structure that can be raised 3,5 meters above floor. The design allows the guests to enjoy wonderful views of the exposition and the priviledge views of the bay of Santander thru impressive windows. To enjoy, you need to reserved thru the Hotel Real de Santander at a price of 250 to 350 euros per night and the room is available from June 30 to September 9th coinciding with the period of the exposition.  More here:

And as the Feast of San Férmin in Pamplona and the running of the bulls is approaching; a bit of history and information.  According to legend Fermin the son of Firmus ; a senator in the Roman city of Pompaelo or current Pamplona was converted to Catholicism by the pervert Honesto and made bishop with only 24 yrs old in the French city of Toulouse.  After ,he evangelise the Galia (France) and traveled a bit ,he ,also started to do miracles like curing lepers and paraplegic people, return the sight,and calm the epilectic suffering. After this incredible acts and to recuperate the cult of Jupiter and Mercure, the Roman governor Sebastian ordered Fermin to be jailed and finally decapitated with a sword.  This is why now to remember his martyrdom, the local folks of Pamplona weared a red hankerchief on their neck during the nine days that last the festivities including the Sanfermines. This later one that dates from the Middle Ages is celebrated on October 10th to remember the entrance of San Fermin in the Cathedral of Amiens (France).

This is now done in July 6 in the Plaza Consistorial that gives the beginning of 204 hours of uninterrupted festivities with music, folklore concerts etc.  The bulls running or  encierro is done every morning by running the bulls thru the streets to take them from the Corrales of Santo Domingo to the bullfight arena.  This year we will have the bulls of Cebaga (second farm with the most encierros and most horns wounds has left). After the running you go the religious celebration of the procession of San Fermin from 10h in the Church of  San Lorenzo.  There is solemn Mass to honor the Saint here presided by the bishop of  Pamplona .  Later by 18h30 every evening until the 14 July you have the Feria de Toros or the bullfights most prestigious of Spain with the principal matadors of the day with colorful local costumes dresses for men and women animated with singing and music.

More info here:

And now how about try the local delicacies with the Salpicon de Madrid and where to eat it, well some of my favorites. Ahhh  oui the Salpicon is a dish of fish or seafood cut in pieces and spread with  a vinaigrette and you eat it cold….

El Pescador, Calle José Ortega y Gasset 75 , langoustines, mussels, onion oil vinager and lemon for aobut 24 euros. More here:

Casa Toribio, Calle Cardenal Belluga 14, lobster tails, hard boiled eggs cutup , virgin olive, vinager, and salt about 27,50€; more here:

Viavélez, Avenida Del General Peron, 10, bogavantes, onions hard eggs , pepper morron red, 27,75€ or half ration 19€; more here:

Bibo, Paseo de la Castellana 52, half a bogavante cook, special sauce DG, mimosa and avocado, 28€; more here:

How about trying some of those homemade artisanal beers of Spain, I will certainty try a few of them next August.

The first one is the Dougalls Happy Otter; Cantabrian brewery of 50 years harvesting the Malt Maris Otter, with orange color and citric aromas light body and 5,6% for about 2,50€; more info here:

Domus Snowhite; from Toledo, cooperation of breweries Domus and Daniel Anagon or Sr Bu, wheat beer with orange, cilander, and manzanilla great for summer at 4,5% and about 2,20€; more here:

Edge Sangría Sour from Barcelona; rose color tropical fruits and woood without acidity ideal for desserts only available from May to Agusut ,6,3% for about 2,90€ ; more here:

CCVK VII Tits APA; the brewery from Vallecas (just out of Madrid) an American Pale Ale of long in the mouth and light body, very popular beer in the region; 5,5% and about 2,75€; more on it here:

La Virgen Trigo Limpio from Madrid; pure wheat in the German style with touches of fruit of banana with 4,9%; price is 14€ for a pack of 6. More here:

Naparbier Light Cloud  from the Navarra region, light body, citric aromas low fermentation  and great for the summer with only 2,7% and about  2,90€ ; more here:

And now for some culture in the theaters; until July 9 the Clàsicos en Alcalà, with shows on Hamlet, of Boris Nikitin; La última noche de Don JuanPlease Continue, Hamlet.especially this one.texts from  Zorrilla, Espronceda or Tirso de Molina.  Also, the company Grumelot (Los brillantes empeños) showing its #Sobre Julieta y el rompedor . More here:

Festival Internacional de Mùsica y Danza de Granada, until August 13. Shows of  the  Ballet del Teatro Di San Carlo de Nápoles (Napoli), Ballet Nacional de Holanda(Netherland) , María Pagés, Ballet Nacional de España.(Spain).  At the La Alhambra on its 66th edition with a new production of Cenicienta (snowwhite) and along it the show of Roland Petit with Pink Floyd, HET (Ballet Nacional de Holanda(Netherland)), with classics like Don Quijote. From Spain, María Pagés, that will interpret Yo, Carmen, or with the Ballet Nacional de España (Spain).  The group of Antonio Najarro playing  Homenaje a Antonio Ruiz Soler (homage to )  as well as time for the classical music by the London Symphony Orchestra. More here:

Veranos de la Villa until September 3 and shows such as Acceso,of Pablo Larraín; Compañía Losdedae. The Great Tamer, of Dimitris Papainounnou…concerts with Christina Rosenvinge or Santiago Auserón,  as well shows showing in the  Naves del Matadero .  The current center  or Centro Internacional de Artes Vivas  will be the site of Dimitris Papaioannou, one of the most important coreagraphers of Europe and showing  The Great Tamer.  Also dance with the group of  Losdedae, Chevi Muraday,  and  Kamikaze, with its new work named Sumérgete. More here:

Festival de Verano de San Lorenzo del Escorial from July 20 to Agust 5. Shows such as  the  Ballet Nacional de Cuba, Ballet Víctor Ullate Comunidad de Madrid.; all at the Teatro Auditorio de la Comunidad de Madrid en San Lorenzo del Escorial. Program of classical music and dance with such showing as  Free Bach 212, from La Fura del Baus ; a contemporary poetic flamenco and electronic music from Bach.  For the dance you can enjoy the antology of the Ballet Nacional de Cuba, headed by Alicia Alonso showing such classics as GiselleLa bella durmienteEl cascanueces or Coppelia. And the Ballet Víctor Ullate Comunidad de Madrid  will show the upswing version of Carmen. More here:

For the arts in museums , see Renaissance in Venice triumph of the beauty and destruction of the painting  or  El Renacimiento en Venecia. Triunfo de la Belleza y destrucción de la pintura.  Portraits by  Caravaggio, Tiziano,and Tintoretto. All in the Museo Thyssen Paseo del Prado,8: Until September 24th: more here:

Last but not least , a phenomenon that is happening in Spain. In part to places like Tinker an Android, iOs application created in 2012. The number of nightclubs has fallen by 5,4% from 2014 to 2017 to reach a new total of  17.591 establishments in January , data from Nielsen . As well the hotels federation or the  Federación Española de Hostelería (FEHR) has seen a drop of 1,5%  in lodgings available in 2016 vs the previous year. The effect  El Botellon (bring own bottle) and  ‘quedadas’ (stays) with friends at home are leaving the discotheques in a second rank. Also, each year we have less youngs and few new babies born so the tendancy will be hard to revert. The fertility rate in Spain is 1,3 children per women while the median in the UE is between 1,8 and 1,9!!!. Food for thought here.

And this is it for Spain for now, keep cool it is very hot 33C or 92F out there ;cheers

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