The Plaza de Jacinto Benavente of Madrid !!

Well, here is this one a lovely square that I had mentioned in several posts but really needs a post of its own. The Plaza de Jacinto Benavente sits in the old town of Madrid right by the illustrious night life of the city, and plenty of architecture and history marvels. Let me tell you a bit more of it, and hope you enjoy it as I.

The Plaza de Jacinto Benavente is part of the Barrio de las Letras (see post) neighborhood. The streets of Carretas, Cruz, Huertas, Atocha, Doctor Cortezo, Concepción Jerónima and La Bolsa converge in it. The name of the square appears in memory of the playwright and Nobel Prize winner, in 1922, Jacinto Benavente y Martínez, author of works such as Los intereses creados (vested interests) or La malquerida.


The square was created in 1926 as a result of the demolition of several buildings around the Plazuela de la Aduana Vieja and the adjoining Plazuela de la Leña (later Calle de la Bolsa), among them the Convento de los Trinitarios Calzados founded by Felipe II ,The convent was exclaustrated and used to house the National Museum of Painting and Sculpture, which due to its origins was called the Trinidad Museum. Later, the Ministry of Public Works (Commerce, Instruction and Public Works) was installed there, until finally, given its poor condition, it was abandoned and demolished in 1897, Another demolished building was the Lonja del Almidón, a market created in the 1940s. In the 19C where starch was perhaps sold, but which was the most popular exchange house in Madrid. The old Madrid Stock Exchange or Bolsa was also demolished, to be replaced by the current Centro Gallego or Galician Center in the 50’s, hence a crossing was placed in the vicinity of the building, remembering the pilgrims who made the Camino de Santiago. After the expansion, the Palacio de los Cinco Gremios Mayores or palace of the Five Major Guilds, built in the 17C, became the property of the Bank of Isabel II, and when this bank merged with the San Carlos bank, it gave rise to the first headquarters of the Bank of Spain. At the beginning of the 21C, it houses the General Directorate of the Treasury. The Palacio de los Cinco Gremios or the House of the Five Guilds was built by cloth merchants, silk merchants, jewelers, stake holders and drug dealers (or grocers), the five thriving guilds of the time. The guild lost power over the years and finally the building was put up for public auction, being acquired in 1815 by the Bank of Isabel II. The building, built in 1791, is an example of neoclassical architecture in Madrid.

At the beginning of the 20C, one of the first cinemas in the capital was built: the Cine Ideal (see post) at the entrance to Calle del Doctor Cortezo, since 1999 they have been officially called Yelmo Cines Ideal.(see post). It is one of the oldest cinemas in Madrid, since it was inaugurated in 1916. It was built where the Trinitarios Calzados Convent used to be, a place with capacity for almost three thousand spectators. In 1998, a bronze Barrendero or sweeper statue was added to the decoration of the square in the center of the square. It is a beautiful sculpture in tribute to the staff of the Madrid City Council Cleaning Service, which makes it possible for this emblematic and tourist area to present an impeccable state. Since the end of the 20C, it has been used on occasions as a space for craft fairs. The Teatro Calderón (see post) is located right on one of the corners of Plaza Jacinto Benavente, it was inaugurated in 1917 with the name of Odeón Theater. In 1927 it was definitively renamed with the name of Teatro Calderón. Although for sponsorship reasons it is subject to some name changes depending on who is paying, as it was called the Häagen Dazs Calderón Theater until recently and since 2012 it has been called the Caser Calderón Theater, by the insurance company Caser. There is also, a mercado de las Ranas or Frog Market,that is an open street market with all kinds of activities not just food. The market is so name because of the previous street name , calle Cantarranas,today the Calle Lope de Vega.

How to get to Plaza de Jacinto Benavente , other than walking the best way is by bus lines 6, 32 and 65 with terminus in the square. A short distance away are also the head of lines 26 (stop Tirso de Molina) and line 50 (stop Plaza Mayor). The Metro lines 1, stop Tirso de Molina is the closest,but ,also, near are stops Anton Martin and Sol,on lines 2 and 3, The Bicimad Station 34 is right on the Plaza de Jacinto Benavente. There is a nice parking we have used the Parking EMT Jacinto Benavente right in the square and very convenient in the hyper-center of Madrid, 5 minutes walk from Puerta del Sol and Plaza Mayor, in the most touristic quarter and in the milieu of shops, bars and theaters !

The Madrid tourist office on the Barrio de las Letras

The Madrid tourist office on the barrendero or sweeper statue

A Madrid province tourist board on Plaza de Jacinto Benavente :

There you go folks, another wonderful spot in my dear Madrid. The Plaza de Jacinto Benavente is wonderful right in the thick of it all ,you will enjoy the walks around here for sure, Hope you enjoy it as I

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

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