Madrid Neighbourhoods: Malasaña – Still Putting the Mad in Madrid?

by Faye Davies


The mindless graffiti and affable goths seem a lukewarm legacy of La Movida Madrileña (the capital’s post-Franco wild years) which kicked off in Malasaña in the Seventies. However, some of Spain’s cultural revolutionaries (the ones who didn’t die of heroine overdoses) are still to be spotted slinking around the barrio, ensuring that the party spirit lives on. Meanwhile, gentrification has led to some great shopping and eating options.

Drinking: In summer, the Plaza Dos de Mayo is the perfect spot for a caña. In colder weather, try the bars in its vicinity, such as El Maño (C/ Palma 64), which serves good wine in art(y) deco surroundings. For those craving a taste of the Malasaña celebrated in Almodóvar’s early films, La Vía Láctea (C/ Velarde 18) provides a dose of historical hedonism.

Eating: Tasty modern tapas can be gorged at a decent price at Ojalá; but the barrio also boasts some fine international restaurants, such as La Granja de Said (Moroccan; C/ San Andrés 11), La Catrina (Mexican; C/ Corredera Alta de San Pablo 13), Xin (Asian), and Palermo Viejo (Argentinean; C/ San Joaquín 5).

Shopping: One of Malasaña’s main arteries, C/ Corredera Alta de San Pablo heaves with everything from wool (at no. 12) to state-of-the-art trainers (Tabula Rasa, at no. 33); while on nearby streets, quirky boutiques like Ioli (bespoke shoes) and Corachan y Delgado (vintage designer clothes; C/ Valverde 42) are popping up all the time. C/ Manuela Malasaña is great for gifts, and C/ Palma is the street for record shopping.

See map below for the addresses mentioned above (click on the markers!):


About Katie

Katie is an English teaching assistant working at a bilingual public school in the center of Madrid.
This entry was posted in Bars and Cafes, Malasaña, Shopping in Madrid. Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Madrid Neighbourhoods: Malasaña – Still Putting the Mad in Madrid?

  1. Graeme says:

    El Albur, just a bit north of Plaza 2 de Mayo, does good raciones from León. Try the morcilla, it looks like a bowl of mud but tastes delicious. They also do excellent value paellas at weekends.

  2. Lucy says:

    Also, Cafe Ruiz, on c/ Ruiz is a beautiful relaxed cafe where you can listen to jazz and enjoy a quiet wine or coffee. I highly recommend it.

  3. marina says:

    I really like el Cafe de Ruiz, I used to go there in my early twenties a lot.

  4. Pingback: Where can I find “untouched Spain?” - Notes from Spain: Travel, Living in Spain, Podcasts, Forum and Photos

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s