The Paseo de Recoletos de Madrid!!!

For some reason, do not ask me why I left this street spot in my dear Madrid out of a post, pity. One big wide nice boulevard with so many wonderful things to see. I like to bring it out of the closet /armory and tell you a bit on the Paseo de Recoletos de Madrid!! 

I like to continue the saga of my MADRID! It is said, that once biten by its virus you never want to leave, well i did but always come back to it. Madrid has a lot to offer and often overlooked! I like to change you a bit ….  Today, I will talk about a simple spot that will make you fall in love with Madrid. The Paseo de Recoletos of Madrid.

madrid-paseo de recoletos to plaza-colon-statue-aug17

Where can I start, you will notice , I am not a writer or poet or even into long verses for most of my posts even if sometimes an exception is made. I try to be short and to the point, these are all places that I have enjoyed since youthful days of early teen years and really find it hard to describe all my love for them. But , lets start shall we…

The Paseo de Recoletos is an avenue of 700 meters rising very slightly, from south to north, and from Plaza de Cibeles to Plaza de Colón. It is part of the boulevards of the central axis of the city, which extends north as Paseo de la Castellana , and south as a Paseo del Prado. its the place where the National Library of Spain and the Archaeological museum of Spain were built ,and currently there.

It had its origin in the ravine formed by the Arroyo de la Fuente Castellana, which furrowed it, and as a continuation of the primitive walk of the old Prado of San Jerónimo and its extension to the Puerta de Atocha (what is now the Paseo del Prado). The Paseo de Recoletos took its name from the convent of the Order of the Augustinian Recollects, whose ensemble was built in the area between 1592 and 1595, and in what was formerly the town of Valnegral, in lands of Eufrasia de Guzmán , Princess of Ascoli. The Alameda ended at the Puerta de Recoletos, a Baroque-style gate built under the reign of king Fernando VI in 1756 and dismantled in 1863. It was alternately known as El Prado Nuevo and Recoletos or Prado de Recoletos.

In the second half of the 18C king Carlos III undertook a series of reforms, among which was the modernization of Madrid to bring it to the height of the famous big cities of the time such as Paris. In this modernization plan; the Neptune Fountain (see post) was included. It was made with white marble from Montesclaros (Toledo). The fountain stands on a large circular pylon in whose center is the figure of Neptune, God of the sea, one of the twelve divinities of Olympus, is the son of Saturn and Rea, and brother of Jupiter. It is presented with a snake curled in the right hand and the trident in the left, erect on a cart formed by a shell pulled by two sea horses with fish tail. Around the car swim seals and dolphins that throw jets of water at a high altitude. The god of the waters could be a symbol of the Navy that king Carlos III reformed to make it more competitive and strengthen the nexus with the colonies.

Aristocrats who had a house in this promenade (Paseo), among them them the Duchy of Sesto; some neighbors who were born, lived or died in Recoletos, were the painter José Villegas Cordero, Ramón del Valle Inclán, Juan Valera or the Andromaca that José Vilches sculpted in 1853,in Rome, and previously held at the Royal Conservatory of Music in Madrid. The gatherings of the café Teide, the literary home of César González Ruano and the Café Gijón, still open( very nice place to chat) at the beginning of the 21C, remain in memory.  It should also be remembered the presence in the second half of the 21C of the Libreria-Galeria Buchholz , cradle of the almost fictitious school of Madrid, or of installations like the Museum of Wax of Madrid, inaugurated in 1972 at the No 41.(see post ).

Some of the best known buildings to marvel at their architecture and chic styles in the Paseo de Recoletos are:

Palace of Linares or Palace of the Marquis of Linares, next to Cibeles, built in 1873 today the headquarters of the Casa de America.  (see post) The Palace of Library and National Museums, finished in 1892, in which they are, in the facade that gives to Paseo de Recoletos, the National Library of Spain (see post). In the opposite façade, in Calle Serrano, is the National Archaeological Museum of Spain (see post). The Palace of the Marquis of Salamanca, built between 1846 and 1855 ; the Convent of San Pascual , originally from the 17C, but demolished and rebuilt in the 19C. The Palace of the Duke of Elduayen, built between 1890 and 1895. The Palace of the Duchess of Medina de las Torres, between 1881 and 1884. The Palacio de López Dóriga and Salaverria, built towards 1872. The Palace of the Marquis of Alcañices, also known as of the Duke of Sesto, of 1862 . the building Restaura , formerly of the Insurance L’Union, in the numbers 18-20. And the building of the insurance company La Aurora, at number 4.

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The Madrid tourist office on Paseo de Recoletos: https://www.esmadrid.com/en/tourist-information/paseo-de-recoletos

There you go folks another dandy spot in my dear Madrid. A nice trip up and down one of the best arteries of my beloved Madrid. The walk on Paseo de Recoletos is awesome just keep going north from the Prado museum!! Hope you enjoy the post as I.

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

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