Champions of Europe, Once Again!

Real Madrid has etched yet another glorious chapter in their history by winning the 2024 UEFA Champions League – HOORAH!  

This victory not only adds to the team’s expansive trophy cabinet but also reaffirms their status as one of the greatest football clubs in the history of the sport. In the final, Real Madrid showcased tactical skill and strong teamwork, defeating Borussia Dortmund with a final score of 2-0 at Wembley Stadium. 

This win officially secured their 15th UEFA Champions League title, adding to the impressive Real Madrid Champions League History. The match not only captivated football fans around the globe but will serve as an exhilarating core memory for Real Madrid fans for years to come. 


An Epic Showdown in London

Real Madrid Champions League History: A Quick Overview 9

In the Champions League final, Real Madrid demonstrated their tactical prowess. Led by Head Coach Carlo Ancelotti, they overcame Borussia Dortmund with a 2-0 victory. Dani Carvajal opened the scoring with a crucial goal assisted by Toni Kroos, which broke the deadlock and shifted momentum in Madrid’s favor. Later in the match, Vinicius Junior secured the win with a sharp strike.

The win marked Real Madrid’s 15th UEFA Champions League title, showcasing not only the team’s strategic depth but also individual brilliance throughout the tournament. Central midfielder Jude Bellingham was particularly notable this season, contributing key goals and assists that were vital to Madrid’s success. His performances throughout the competition exemplified the high level of skill and spirit that Real Madrid is known for.


Who Founded Real Madrid?

Real Madrid Champions League History: A Quick Overview 5

Real Madrid was founded on March 6, 1902, by brothers Juan Padrós and Carlos Padrós. Originally named ‘Madrid Football Club,‘ the institution has grown to become a cornerstone of global club football. The royal title “Real”, meaning “Royal” in Spanish, was bestowed upon the club by King Alfonso XIII in 1920. The royal crown was also added in the team’s emblem, marking them officially as “Real Madrid Club de Fútbol.”

Real Madrid Trophies & Records

Real Madrid’s trophy cabinet is among the most decorated in the world. The club’s relentless pursuit of success is evidenced by its record 14 UEFA Champions League titles, a testament to their dominance in the European competition. 

Nationally, Real Madrid has won numerous La Liga titles and Copa del Rey trophies, consistently proving their mettle against Spain’s best.

Here is a quick and impressive factsheet: 

Real Madrid Champions League History (UEFA):

  • First title in 1955-56
  • Most recent title in 2024
  • A record 14 titles, making them the most successful club in the tournament’s history

La Liga Titles:

  • First La Liga title in 1931-32
  • Have won 35 La Liga titles, the most in the competition’s history as of the latest season

Copa del Rey Trophies:

  • First Copa del Rey win in 1905
  • A total of 19 Copa del Rey titles, showcasing consistent domestic success

Other Achievements:

  • 11 Supercopa de España titles, first in 1988
  • 4 FIFA Club World Cups, starting with their first in 2014
  • 2 UEFA Cups (now known as the UEFA Europa League) in 1985 and 1986

Real Madrid Champions League History: A Quick Overview 4

Famous Moments, Plays & Games

Real Madrid’s history is punctuated by iconic moments. A great example is Zinedine Zidane’s left-foot volley against Bayer Leverkusen in the 2002 Champions League final, considered one of the greatest goals in the history of the tournament. 

Another unforgettable moment was Sergio Ramos’ dramatic equalizer in the 93rd minute against Atlético Madrid in the 2014 Champions League final, leading to a victory in extra time. These moments are not just highlights of matches but have become integral to the culture of the sport.


Iconic Real Madrid Players

Real Madrid has been home to some of football’s greatest players of all time. Here are a few football legends you may have heard of: 

Historical Legends:

  • Alfredo Di Stéfano: Set the early standards of excellence.
  • Ferenc Puskás: Renowned for his incredible scoring ability.
  • Raúl: Iconic figure and one of the leading scorers in the club’s history.

Modern Icons:

  • Cristiano Ronaldo: Became the club’s all-time top scorer.
  • Zinedine Zidane: Influential both as a player and as a coach, leading the team to multiple Champions League titles.

Real Madrid’s Rivals

Real Madrid’s most notable rivalry is with FC Barcelona, known as ‘El Clásico,’ which is more than just a football match; it’s a clash that divides Spain and attracts global attention. Another fierce rivalry is with Atlético Madrid, known as the ‘Derby Madrileño,’ where city pride is on the line, showcasing intense, passionate football.


Real Madrid and the City of Madrid

Real Madrid is more than just a football club; it has become an integral part of Madrid’s culture. The club symbolizes the city’s vibrant energy and commitment to excellence in sports and community values. On game days, the entire city pauses as fans of all backgrounds come together, demonstrating the sport’s ability to unite and bring people together.

Real Madrid Gear, Merch, and Traditions

Real Madrid is known not only for its on-field success but also for its rich traditions and iconic symbols:

  • Colors and Uniforms: The team traditionally wears white uniforms, earning them the nickname “Los Blancos” (The Whites). The away uniforms often vary, featuring colors like black, dark blue, or purple.
  • Club Crest: Features a crown, a nod to their royal patronage, and the initials “MCF” for Madrid Club de Fútbol.
  • Anthem:“Himno del Real Madrid,” the official anthem played before home games, reflects the pride and traditions of the club.
  • Stadium: Santiago Bernabéu Stadium: Named after former president Santiago Bernabéu, it is one of the world’s most famous football venues.
  • Training Ground: Ciudad Real Madrid: The state-of-the-art training facility in Valdebebas, used for both the first team and the youth academy.
  • Museum and Tours: The club operates a museum at the Santiago Bernabéu, showcasing trophies, memorabilia, and interactive exhibits about Real Madrid’s history.
  • Supporters’ Groups: Numerous official and unofficial supporters’ clubs globally, known as “peñas,” which organize viewing parties and other activities.


So…what do you think of the extensive Real Madrid Champions League History? Have you joined the fan club?


Photo Credits:

  • All photos used through Canva Free Media License































Looking for a place in Madrid?

Check out our coliving spaces located all throughout the city!




You only need your toothbrush!

Our rentals come fully furnished and equipped, plus wifi, cleaning and flexible leases.




Find your ideal living space

We offer everything from cozy private rooms to expansive apartments.

We’ve all heard about artificial intelligence “taking over the world.”

With the recent arrival of ChatGPT and a whole range of fancy AI tools, it’s easier than ever to envision a dystopian future controlled by freaky AI robots. Many of us have found ourselves wondering…will AI replace my job? Will I be out of work in a few years? 

Phil Calzavara, esteemed Engineer & Data Scientist, sees things differently. In fact, Phil views artificial intelligence as a promising augmentation of our current human capabilities, not an outright replacement. While many industries will certainly have to adjust to the arrival of advanced AI technology, he sees this as a positive change that will revolutionize our collective creativity, rather than limit it. 

Can you imagine? AI being used as a tool to propel innovation into new realms, allowing anyone to breathe life into a creative, personalized venture and lowering the barriers to do so? 

Well, Phil has put this to the test. And it’s impressive. 



storybooks from dreamstories.ai

Phil’s groundbreaking entrepreneurial venture, dreamstories.ai, leverages AI to create personalized storybooks for your friends and loved ones. By uploading just a few photos, Phil’s specialized AI technology generates spot-on illustrations that turn your chosen person into the protagonist of the story. Then, voilà! Your friend, child, parent, or whoever you choose is a storybook superhero, illustrated in perfect detail as they embark on wild adventures and save the day. 

To create your own storybook, it goes a little something like this…

  • Head to the website dreamstories.ai  
  • Personalize your story by answering a few prompts and adding key details
  • Upload several photos of your selected person 
  • Take a look at the demo version of your story 
  • Order your personalized storybook for delivery! 

The inspiration behind dreamstories.ai storybooks

The idea for dreamstories.ai was actually born from a simple favor. Phil, known as the “techy AI guy” in his circle of friends, was asked if he could make a personalized storybook featuring his friends’ son as the main character. Of course, his answer was yes. But as he dove into the intricacies of AI image generation, he was surprised to discover many gaps in the technology. 

It proved incredibly difficult to produce consistent AI generated images. The process entailed working with numerous AI base models, training and “fine-tuning” their behaviors, and even still the illustrations were largely flawed and difficult to replicate at scale. Phil began going down Reddit and YouTube rabbit holes, fascinated by the lack of formalized research on this topic. 

He realized there was a huge untapped market when it came to AI image generation, and his curiosity quickly turned into a deeper passion to develop this technology and create his own brand.  


Phil’s unique AI formula

storybooks from dreamstories.ai

Phil became fascinated with the idea of large-scale personalization using artificial intelligence. With regard to storybooks, he knew this sense of personalization would be the key to their success: the more specific and detailed a story, the more engaging it is. If he was going to scale dreamstories.ai, it was essential to train the AI to create high degrees of customization, both with text and illustrations. 

Phil leveraged different AI base models, specifically Open AI and Stable Diffusion, as a basis for the storybooks’ creation process. Then came the big challenge: fine-tuning. In the data tech world, fine-tuning refers to the introduction of new information into these base models, and teaching them how to execute new tasks. 

Now, Dreamstories.ai is fully operational, and has received incredibly positive feedback about the life-like details of the AI generated illustrations. New story themes, options for multiple personalized characters, and even stories featuring your own pets are all coming soon! 


Innovation at it’s finest 

storybooks from dreamstories.ai

Phil comes from an extensive background in both computer and data science. He completed studies at the Polytechnic Universities of Milan and Madrid. Most recently, he worked as a Data Scientist for Uber in Amsterdam playing a key role in designing and analyzing Uber’s payment and transaction infrastructure to support millions of daily rides. He has an extensive CV of experience, yet cites that roughly 80% of his AI technology with dreamstories.ai has been completely new knowledge for him. 

“It’s a super new field. There aren’t books about this right now…It’s a lot of intuition. Trying things out, seeing what works and what doesn’t work and then cutting what doesn’t.” 

Phil remembers being fascinated by computers ever since the age of 5. He was playing computer games before he could read or write, and always had a strong intuition that he would be an entrepreneur. As he continues to refine his illustration generation process with dreamstories.ai, he increasingly envisions how AI technology can evolve to support future personalized products and ventures.


Phil & Urban Campus 

In terms of Phil’s personal life? Something like “non-stop world traveler” would be a fitting description. He is originally from Italy but has spent time living in Spain, Portugal and the Netherlands as well as summers in the United States, Hungary and Russia. One challenge he has faced with his international lifestyle has been maintaining meaningful friendships and community. 

“It is such an investment of time, you have to build relationships and you know that most people move on with their lives and move to different countries…I think from that perspective UC helped me a lot.” 

For Phil, the community was the primary aspect that attracted him to Urban Campus. He lived for 1 year at our Urban Campus Mellado, Madrid Coliving in 2021 before moving to the Netherlands for work. A year and a half later, he decided to return to Madrid to work full-time on dreamstories.ai, largely due to the strong friendships he still had in the city. Returning to UC Mellado was a no-brainer, as he still had many friends in the coliving and wanted a solid community as he pursued his new storybooks venture. 

“The fact that in UC you are living with so many people, it is so great from a perspective of making friends. For a person that just moved to Madrid, I think it is amazing. They get to know 100 people in just a few days. Not to mention all the events and the community breakfasts, which are the best.” 

Coworking at Urban Campus

As a self-employed entrepreneur who works from home, Phil especially appreciates the coworking space at UC. It has given him the chance to separate his working and living space, and also get feedback from other colivers about his business. In this way, he has gained friendships and collaborative colleagues all at the same time. 

Phil leads the operations at dreamstories.ai completely by himself, which he mentioned can be challenging and lonely – although, gratifying above all. Having access to the international community at UC has made his journey far less isolating, giving him a family of people with whom he can celebrate his progress and wins. We can’t wait to see what comes next for him, and of course order storybooks of our own!

Want to check out the storybooks for yourself? 

Madrid is NOT just any regular city.

The Spanish capital stands as a testament to urban growth and global influence, where its economic and cultural contributions resonate worldwide. The city has skyrocketed in popularity during recent years, quickly becoming a place on everyone’s must-visit list. 

When it comes to neighborhoods, Madrid certainly doesn’t disappoint. The city is abundant in diverse neighborhoods that showcase its rich history and electric modern life. Whether you are relocating to Madrid or just passing through, it is important to know a bit about Madrid’s many different neighborhoods and what they each offer. 

Let’s dive into the best neighborhoods in Madrid, examining their historical significance, main attractions, and unique contributions to the capital’s culture!


1. Malasaña

Discovering the Best Neighborhoods in Madrid 10

Malasaña, known as Madrid’s “hipster hub”, is where tradition meets trendy. The neighborhood’s history is deeply rooted in the Movida Madrileña, a counter-cultural movement that sprang to life after Franco’s regime. Today, it’s a vibrant area filled with indie boutiques, eclectic bars, and vintage shops. Wander the streets to find colorful street art, pop into funky stores, or enjoy the lively nightlife.

Malasaña is also a place of historical significance, with Plaza del Dos de Mayo commemorating the Spanish resistance against French forces. This square is a gathering place for locals and offers a glimpse into the everyday life of Madrileños. The Malasaña area is widely recognized as one of the best neighborhoods in Madrid, perfect for those looking to experience Madrid’s modern cultural scene while stepping back in time.

  • Plaza del Dos de Mayo: a historic plaza at the center of the neighborhood
  • Calle de la Palma: for its vibrant street art and indie boutiques
  • Conde Duque Cultural Center: for arts and performances
  • Mercado de San Ildefonso: for a fun, trendy market experience
  • Museo del Romanticismo: for a glimpse into 19th-century Spanish life

PLUS, check out: 


2. Chueca

Discovering the Best Neighborhoods in Madrid 3

Adjacent to Malasaña, Chueca is renowned as Madrid’s LGBTQ+ friendly quarter, exuding openness and diversity. What was once a rundown area has transformed into one of the most popular and inclusive neighborhoods in Madrid. Chueca is bursting with fashionable boutiques, charming cafes, and some of the city’s best nightlife, particularly during Madrid Pride.

The neighborhood is also home to the Mercado de San Antón, a modern market where visitors can enjoy a variety of tapas and food vendors. Chueca’s lively streets and numerous bars and clubs make it an exciting destination for those looking to experience Madrid’s progressive and energetic side.

  • Mercado de San Antón: a modern market with a rooftop terrace
  • Plaza de Chueca: the vibrant central square of the neighborhood
  • Calle Hortaleza: for shopping and bar hopping
  • Calle Pelayo: for its quaint bookshops and cafes
  • The annual Madrid Pride Parade: one of the largest LGBTQ+ celebrations in Europe


3. Barrio de las Letras

Discovering the Best Neighborhoods in Madrid 14

The Barrio de las Letras, or “Literary Quarter”, is a tribute to Madrid’s Golden Age, where famous writers like Cervantes and Lope de Vega once roamed. This neighborhood is a haven for literature enthusiasts, with its cobblestone streets and historic plaques quoting literary works. It’s a peaceful area ideal for strolling and visiting quaint bookshops and taverns.

The neighborhood transforms at night, offering a wide range of dining and entertainment options. One key highlight is the Ateneo de Madrid, a cultural institution and library that has been a focal point for Spanish intellectual life. 

  • Calle de Huertas: lined with quotes from famous authors
  • Plaza de Santa Ana: for historic cafes and live performances
  • Prado Museum: one of the world’s most renowned European art galleries
  • Ateneo de Madrid: a historic cultural institution & conference center 
  • Casa de Lope de Vega: the home of the famous Spanish playwright


4. Salamanca

Discovering the Best Neighborhoods in Madrid 12

Salamanca is Madrid’s most upscale neighborhood, and consistently ranks high as one of the best neighborhoods in Madrid. The area is specifically known for its elegant buildings and luxury shopping. The Salamanca district is characterized by its refined classical architecture, chic boutiques, and exclusive restaurants with live music. It’s the place to be for high-end shopping and people-watching in some of Madrid’s most stylish streets. stroll through the beautiful Retiro Park. 

Beyond shopping, Salamanca is also rich in culture, housing the National Archaeological Museum and the Lázaro Galdiano Art Museum. This neighborhood offers a quieter side of Madrid, making it perfect for those seeking sophistication and tranquility.

  • Calle de Serrano: for luxury shopping
  • National Archaeological Museum: for cultural heritage
  • Lázaro Galdiano Museum: for private art collections
  • Puerta de Alcalá: an iconic neoclassical monument, where you can find countless terraces and clubs to have cocktails and dance until the early hours of the morning.
  • Plaza de Colón: for the largest Spanish flag in the world & cultural events
  • Retiro Park: To enjoy its 118 hectares of nature right in the center of Madrid

PLUS, check out: 


5. La Latina

Discovering the Best Neighborhoods in Madrid 5

La Latina is the essence of traditional Madrid, known for its old, windy streets and exciting tapas scene. This neighborhood is bustling with energy, especially on Sundays during the famous El Rastro market. La Latina is the perfect spot to experience Madrid’s renowned tapas culture, with countless bars and restaurants serving up Spanish delicacies.

The area is steeped in history, home to some of Madrid’s oldest churches and buildings, including the Basilica of San Francisco el Grande. La Latina’s charming plazas, such as Plaza de la Cebada and Plaza de la Paja, are delightful spots to relax and soak up the local atmosphere.

  • El Rastro Market: Madrid’s largest flea market, repeating every Sunday 
  • Cava Baja and Cava Alta: for traditional tapas bars
  • Basilica of San Francisco el Grande: for its impressive architecture
  • Plaza de la Cebada and Plaza de la Paja: for wide-open, historic squares
  • Teatro La Latina: for live theater performances


6. Lavapiés

Lavapiés is Madrid’s multicultural heart, a melting pot of cultures and cuisines from around the world. This neighborhood is known for its diverse community, bold street art, and a wide array of international restaurants. Lavapiés offers an alternative Madrid experience, with an edgy vibe and a strong sense of community.

The neighborhood is also home to important cultural institutions like the Reina Sofía Museum and the Tabacalera, a former tobacco factory turned cultural center. Lavapiés’ dynamic and inclusive atmosphere makes it a must-visit for those looking to experience the city’s contemporary vibe and diversity.

  • Reina Sofía Museum: for modern art collections.
  • Tabacalera: for avant-garde exhibitions and workshops.
  • El Rastro Market (extension into Lavapiés): for second hand shopping & unique finds
  • Calle Argumosa: for delicious, diverse food
  • Lavapiés Street Art: showcases the neighborhood’s culture & art


7. Madrid de los Austrias

Madrid de los Austrias, or Habsburg Madrid, takes you back to the era of the Habsburg dynasty, showcasing the imperial grandeur architecture. The Royal Palace, Almudena Cathedral, and Plaza Mayor are just a few of the historic landmarks found here. Walking through the streets here is like taking a step back in time, with every corner telling a story of Madrid’s royal past.

The area also boasts some of the best traditional Spanish restaurants and taverns in the city. Enjoying a leisurely meal or a quick tapa in one of the many historic plazas is a quintessential Madrid experience. 

  • Royal Palace of Madrid: the official residence of the Spanish Royal Family
  • Plaza Mayor: for historical significance and terraced cafes
  • Almudena Cathedral: a blend of Gothic, Romanesque, and Neoclassical styles
  • Mercado de San Miguel: for gourmet Spanish products
  • Puerta del Sol: the bustling heart of Madrid


8. Argüelles-Moncloa

Argüelles-Moncloa is known for its youthful vibe, largely due to its proximity to several universities. This neighborhood is filled with bookstores, cafes, and vintage clothing shops. It’s a place where students, locals, and tourists mingle, creating a lively and dynamic environment.

The neighborhood is also the gateway to some of Madrid’s green spaces, including Parque del Oeste and the Templo de Debod, an ancient Egyptian temple transported to Madrid. Argüelles-Moncloa combines the vibrancy of student life with cultural gems, making it a diverse and exciting area to explore.

  • Templo de Debod: an authentic Egyptian temple in Madrid
  • Parque del Oeste: for its rose garden and views
  • Moncloa Tower: for panoramic views of the city
  • Museo de América: showcasing art from the Americas


9. Chamberí

Discovering the Best Neighborhoods in Madrid 2

Chamberí represents the authentic Madrid lifestyle, offering a slice of local life away from the tourist hubs. This neighborhood is full of charming architecture, squares filled with terraces where you can enjoy a “caña” (small beer) or a wine. There is the famous “Ponzano” street, the most famous bar street in Madrid. Additionally, there is a selection of theaters and cinemas showing Spanish and international films. Chamberí is great for those who want to experience Madrid like a local, with its traditional markets and family-run restaurants.

The area also houses several lesser-known museums, like the Sorolla Museum, dedicated to the famous Spanish painter. Chamberí is ideal for those seeking a fun, authentic Madrid experience without straying too far from the city center.

  • Sorolla Museum: dedicated to the world-famous painter Joaquín Sorolla
  • Andén 0: an old metro station turned museum
  • Teatros del Canal: for contemporary performing arts
  • Mercado de Chamberí: for a traditional food market experience
  • Calle de Ponzano: to enjoy amazing cuisine in a lively environment


10. Retiro

Named after the famous Retiro Park, this neighborhood is one of Madrid’s most elegant districts. The park itself is a magnificent green oasis in the center of the city, offering a peaceful retreat with beautiful gardens, statues, and a charming lake. Retiro is predominantly residential but is known for its upscale boutiques and fine dining.

The area around the park, especially the Paseo del Prado, is home to some of Madrid’s most important cultural institutions, including the Prado Museum and the Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum. 

  • Retiro Park: Madrid’s green oasis
  • Crystal Palace: a beautiful glass and metal structure within the park
  • The Fallen Angel Statue: a unique sculpture in the park
  • Royal Tapestry Factory: for a historic look at the art of tapestry in Spain


11. Tetuán

Tetuán offers a glimpse into the more modern and diverse side of Madrid. This neighborhood is very culturally diverse, reflected in its culinary offerings and shops. Originally an area for workers and immigrants, it has evolved into a bustling district with a mix of traditional and international influences.

Tetuán is also becoming known for its emerging art scene, with galleries and cultural spaces popping up on every corner. The area around Calle de Bravo Murillo is particularly cool, offering everything from Moroccan bakeries to Latin American eateries. 

  • Calle de Bravo Murillo: for diverse and fun shopping 
  • Palacio de Vistalegre: for sports and entertainment events
  • Dehesa de la Villa Park: for nature within the neighborhood
  • Mercado Maravillas: one of the largest food markets in Madrid
  • Tetuán’s street art: for a cultural urban exploration

PLUS, check out: 


12. Atocha

Discovering the Best Neighborhoods in Madrid 1

Atocha is most recognized for its bustling train station, serving as a primary hub for local, regional, and international travelers. But there’s much more to Atocha than just transit. The neighborhood is a blend of art, culture, and green spaces, making it an increasingly popular area for both tourists and locals.

Atocha is home to some of Madrid’s most prestigious museums, forming part of the famous ‘Golden Triangle of Art’. The area is also known for its lovely botanical gardens, plus it’s close connection to Retiro Park. Dining in Atocha ranges from traditional Spanish eateries to modern, trendy restaurants, catering to all tastes and preferences.

  • Atocha Railway Station: Not just a transport hub, but also a place of architectural beauty and a tropical garden.
  • Royal Botanical Garden: A vast collection of plants from around the world, great for an afternoon stroll.
  • CaixaForum Madrid: A modern cultural center hosting art exhibitions, film screenings, and concerts.
  • Casa Encendida: A dynamic cultural center known for its avant-garde exhibitions, workshops, and performances.

PLUS, check out: 


Background on Madrid’s Neighborhoods

Discovering the Best Neighborhoods in Madrid 9

The best neighborhoods in Madrid each tell a different story, reflecting the city’s multifaceted history. From the Habsburg grandeur to the hipster, modern vibe of Malasaña, each area offers a distinct experience. 

Madrid’s history stretches back centuries, originally established as a Moorish fort. It became the capital of Spain in the 16th century under King Philip II. Since then, Madrid has grown into a sprawling metropolis, blending historical charm with modern innovation. The diversity of its neighborhoods showcases the city’s evolution from a medieval stronghold to a global city.


Best Neighborhoods in Madrid to Live in

Discovering the Best Neighborhoods in Madrid 7

When considering the best neighborhoods in Madrid to live in, factors such as affordability, noise levels, safety, and space come into play. 

For those seeking a more tranquil, upscale environment, Salamanca and Retiro offer elegant living spaces near Madrid’s most serene park and high-end shopping streets. For younger residents or those looking for a vibrant nightlife and cultural scene, neighborhoods like Malasaña, La Latina and Chueca might be more appealing. 

Families may prefer areas like Chamberí or Argüelles-Moncloa, known for their safety, parks, and family-friendly amenities. Meanwhile, Lavapiés and Tetuán are becoming increasingly popular among those seeking a diverse, dynamic community with more affordable housing options. 

Each neighborhood in Madrid offers its own unique advantages, making it important to consider personal preferences and lifestyle when choosing the best place to live.


Photo Credits:

  • All photos used through Canva Free Media License





























Looking for a place in Madrid?

Check out our coliving spaces located all throughout the city!




You only need your toothbrush!

Our rentals come fully furnished and equipped, plus wifi, cleaning and flexible leases.




Find your ideal living space

We offer everything from cozy private rooms to expansive apartments.

Have you ever wondered why there is so much debate about Madrid vs Barcelona? 

These two iconic Spanish cities each boast their own rich histories, vibrant cultures, and unique identities that draw in locals and tourists alike. Madrid’s elegance and Barcelona’s creative spirit both offer one-of-a-kind experiences. 

Choosing between Madrid vs Barcelona isn’t about which city is superior; it’s really about what speaks to you personally. Will you find yourself drawn to the majestic allure of the capital city or the vibrant artistry of the coastal metropolis? Let’s find out!


Madrid vs Barcelona – Which City is Bigger? 

Madrid vs Barcelona: Spain's Classic Rivalry 8

When comparing Madrid vs Barcelona, it’s clear that Madrid stands out as the larger city in terms of both geographical area and population. Madrid, as the capital of Spain, encompasses a vast urban landscape that supports a bustling and diverse population. Barcelona, while slightly smaller, is renowned for its unique combination of urban living and beachside charm, offering a more compact and coastal experience.


  • Population: Approximately 3.3 million (within city limits)
  • Metropolitan area: Over 6.7 million


  • Population: Approximately 1.6 million (within city limits)
  • Metropolitan area: Over 5.6 million


Cost of Living in Madrid vs Barcelona

Madrid vs Barcelona: Spain's Classic Rivalry 2

When comparing the cost of living, Barcelona tends to be slightly more expensive than Madrid, especially in terms of housing costs. Both cities, however, are among the more costly in Spain due to their considerable popularity.

Average Monthly Rent (1-bedroom apartment in city center):

  • Madrid: Approximately €1,000 – €1,200
  • Barcelona: Approximately €1,100 – €1,300

Average Monthly Expenses (excluding rent):

  • Madrid: Approximately €600 – €800
  • Barcelona: Approximately €650 – €850

Getting a Job in Madrid vs Barcelona

The job markets in Madrid and Barcelona vary, with each city showcasing strengths in different sectors. Madrid has a larger and more diverse economy, offering extensive opportunities in finance, technology, and government sectors. Barcelona excels in tourism, the creative arts, and tech startups, reflecting its innovative spirit and cultural heritage.

However, this doesn’t limit opportunities to these sectors alone. Both Madrid and Barcelona, as bustling metropolises with global populations and companies, offer a wide array of job prospects across different industries.

Strongest Industries in Madrid:

  • Finance
  • Technology
  • International Business

Strongest Industries in Barcelona:

  • Tourism
  • Creative Arts (Design, Architecture)
  • Tech Startups


Food in Madrid vs Barcelona

Madrid vs Barcelona: Spain's Classic Rivalry 9

In Madrid, the culinary scene is deeply rooted in traditional Spanish cuisine. You can enjoy classic dishes such as “cocido madrileño,” a hearty chickpea-based stew, and “churros con chocolate” for a sweet treat. The atmosphere in Madrid’s eateries ranges from historic cafés to bustling tapas bars, where meals are often shared among friends in a lively setting.

Barcelona offers a culinary adventure that blends traditional Catalan dishes with innovative gastronomy. Famous for its seafood, Barcelona has great “paella,” often found along the city’s beachside restaurants. Don’t miss out on “Crema Catalana” for dessert, a classic Catalan custard with a unique twist of caramelized sugar, cinnamon, and lemon zest.


Madrid or Barcelona to visit?

Madrid vs Barcelona: Spain's Classic Rivalry 5

Barcelona often beats Madrid in terms of tourist numbers, largely due to its iconic architecture and Mediterranean allure. However, Madrid captivates those interested in royal history, art, and quintessential Spanish culture. Visiting both cities offers a comprehensive insight into Spain’s rich heritage, contrasting Madrid’s classical elegance with Barcelona’s seaside vibe.

Main Attractions in Madrid: 

  • Royal Palace: The official residence of the Spanish Royal Family, showcasing incredibly impressive architecture.
  • Prado Museum: Home to one of the world’s finest collections of European art.
  • Retiro Park: An enormous green space in the heart of the city, perfect for leisure and cultural events.
  • Plaza Mayor: Madrid’s main square, known for its historical buildings and vibrant colors.

Main Attractions in Barcelona: 

Antoni Gaudí, a modernist architect, significantly shaped Barcelona’s architectural landscape, leaving a legacy of distinctive buildings that continue to draw worldwide admiration. Many of the key attractions in Barcelona revolve around his work.

  • Sagrada Familia: Gaudí’s unfinished masterpiece, a symbol of Barcelona’s architectural innovation.
  • Park Güell: A public park filled with colorful mosaics and whimsical structures by Gaudí.
  • Casa Batlló: Another of Gaudí’s creations, famous for its unique facade and interior design.
  • Gothic Quarter: The historic center of Barcelona, featuring narrow medieval streets and historic buildings.


Languages in Madrid vs Barcelona

Madrid vs Barcelona: Spain's Classic Rivalry 10

In Barcelona, alongside Spanish, Catalan is widely spoken and holds significant cultural importance. Derived from Latin, Catalan has a rich history and is a marker of regional identity. For tourists and new residents, encountering Catalan can be both enriching and challenging, adding a layer of diversity to the experience in Barcelona but also requiring some adaptation to navigate the bilingual environment effectively.


Nightlife in Madrid vs Barcelona 

Madrid vs Barcelona: Spain's Classic Rivalry 12

Spain is famous for its exciting nightlife, with both Madrid and Barcelona leading the way. Whether you prefer dancing in big clubs or enjoying live music in cozy venues, both cities have plenty to offer for a fun night out.

Nightlife in Madrid

Madrid’s nightlife is renowned for its versatility, offering everything from traditional tapas bars to trendy nightclubs. Notable spots include:

  • Kapital: A seven-story mega-club known for its diverse music and lively dance floors.
  • Teatro Barceló: A vibrant club set in a historic theater, offering a mix of mainstream and electronic beats across multiple floors
  • Shoko Madrid: A chic nightclub known for its glamorous ambiance and themed parties

Nightlife in Barcelona

Barcelona’s nightlife is as diverse as the city itself, with beach clubs, bars, and nightclubs:

  • Pacha Barcelona: Famous club brand offering dance music by the beach.
  • Razzmatazz: An iconic venue with multiple rooms catering to different musical tastes.
  • Opium Barcelona: A stylish club known for hosting top DJs and its seaside location.

Diving into the nightlife of Madrid and Barcelona offers a glimpse into the soul of Spanish culture, where the night is always young and people are never ready to go home. 

Ultimately, choosing between Madrid and Barcelona is a delightful dilemma, as both cities boast their own exceptional qualities. For those undecided, the good news is there’s no need to choose. You can embark on an adventure that embraces the unique splendors of both, and experience the best of Spain’s rich diversity.

Looking for a place to live in Madrid or Barcelona? 

Check out our Urban Campus coliving spaces:

Discover the Barrio de Salamanca!

Madrid is a city full of life, cultural richness and neighborhoods….MANY, many neighborhoods. It can be difficult to know exactly where to start when exploring the array of diverse barrios in Madrid, but don’t worry – we can steer you in the right direction. 

Avenida América, found within the famous Salamanca district, is a standout neighborhood that is definitely worth exploring. Imagine delicious dining options, bustling shopping streets, lively bars and significant historical sites – what more could you need? It is a well-connected area and an ideal starting point for those looking to dive into the authentic cultural fabric of Madrid.

Not to mention, it is the neighborhood of our Avenida América, Madrid Coliving Space! 

Let’s take a closer look at the best things to do in Avenida América and the vibrant barrio de Salamanca. 


🍽️ Restaurants in Avenida América and Barrio de Salamanca

The barrio de Salamanca offers a rich diversity of culinary experiences that cater to diverse tastes and budgets. From high-end gourmet restaurants to cozy, budget-friendly eateries, there is a little something for everyone. 

Discover the Barrio de Salamanca: Best Things to Do! 10

High Budget Restaurants

Carbon Negro: Carbon Negro is a great place for sophisticated dining, and is especially celebrated for its grilled specialties. The ambiance is chic, with soft lighting that enhances the dining experience. You can enjoy Spanish classics like jamón ibérico and pisto manchego, plus explore their extensive bar, wine, and cocktail menu.

Mano de Santa: This restaurant has a dynamic menu with lots of global influences. The interior of Mano de Santa is stunning and elegant, perfect for indulging or celebrating a special occasion. The menu offers shared plates, fish, meat, and desserts, with a few highlights being their delicious rice wok and eggplant empanadas.

El Cañadio: Known for its creative tapas and main courses, El Cañadio offers a blend of contemporary and classic flavors. A Michelin-recognized restaurant in 2023, it’s ideal for adventurous eaters interested in dishes like steak tartar, cow tail, and leek and shrimp pie.

Medium Budget Restaurants

Discover the Barrio de Salamanca: Best Things to Do! 13

Santerra: Santerra features a casual bar on the first floor (no reservations needed), with a Michelin-starred experience downstairs. The menu changes seasonally, offering traditional dishes with experimental flavors. A few standouts include the artisanal jamón ibérico croquette and wild rabbit rice. 

La Raquetista en la Habana: La Raquetista offers a fusion of Cuban and Spanish flavors in a vibrant atmosphere. Enjoy traditional dishes like torreznos (a type of fried bacon) and buffalo steak tartare. It’s a top choice for food lovers, with a large wine cellar and unique recipes.

Casa Vito: Casa Vito specializes in Italian cuisine, serving authentic pasta and pizza in a cozy, authentic setting. The menu features dishes like gnocchi with gorgonzola and orecchiette, complemented by a comprehensive wine selection.

Cazorla: A top Andalusian tavern in Madrid, Cazorla offers an extensive array of Spanish tapas. It’s the perfect spot for sharing dishes and enjoying classics like jamón and huevos rotos.

Cilindro: This Peruvian restaurant stands out for its innovative cuisine, featuring dishes like shrimp causa and oxtail bao. It’s famous for its use of traditional wood ovens and homemade sauces. If you are a fan of Peruvian cuisine, Cilindro is definitely the place for you. 

Warehouse: Warehouse is regarded for its enchanting garden setting and farm-to-table Spanish cuisine. The open garden creates a magical environment, ideal for enjoying dishes like morucha sirloin steak and catxopo (veal fillets). This restuarant is a MUST visit! 

Kippu: Offering a taste of Japan in Madrid, Kippu is known for its fresh sushi and Japanese specialties. The restaurant features a street market ambiance, perfect for a culinary journey to across the world.

Low Budget Restaurants

Discover the Barrio de Salamanca: Best Things to Do! 5

Sumo; Diego de León: An all-you-can-eat Chinese restaurant offering a vast array of dishes, including nigiris, makis, and rolls. Sumo is ideal for a hearty meal at an affordable price.

Makami; Diego de León: Specializing in delectable ramen, Makami is a cozy spot for casual dining. Their menu features various ramen dishes, gyozas, bao, and tacos.

La Mordida; Diego de León: Mexican restaurant La Mordida brings vibrant flavors to Madrid. Enjoy Mexican classics like nachos, chipotle chicken, and huevos rancheros, along with special events like tequila tastings and mariachi nights.

Pizza Natura: This restaurant is known for their artisanal pizza with unique dough ingredients like mijo and quinoa. Pizza Natura offers a healthy dining experience with vegan and gluten-free options as well. 


🛍️ Shopping in Avenida América 

Discover the Barrio de Salamanca: Best Things to Do! 15

Calle Ortega y Gasset is the epitome of luxury, offering an array of high-end boutiques and designer stores. This street is synonymous with exclusivity and sophistication, where shoppers can find the latest trends from international fashion houses. The elegant storefronts and upscale standards make it a destination for those seeking premium quality, and a great place for a long afternoon stroll. 

The small shops on Diego de León street offer a more intimate and personalized shopping experience. Here, shoppers can find unique and trendy items that cater to a variety of tastes. These shops are perfect for those who seek individuality and style without the high-end price tag. 

If you’re on the hunt for your classic, go-to stores, head to Calle Goya. This area is home to popular brands like Zara and Parfois, offering a diverse mix of fashion, accessories, and more. It’s another great street to find the new styles without breaking the bank.


🍸 Bars in Avenida América

In the barrio de Salamanca, just like in the rest of Spain, the bar scene is essential. Grab a beer, order some tapas, and get ready to kick back and relax.

Terrazas along Juan Bravo Street

Juan Bravo Street is lined with delightful terraces, which create the perfect spot for a leisurely drink. This is the ideal place to bask in the sunlight and immerse yourself in the lively neighborhood. For those unsure where to start, here are two excellent recommendations:

  • Salitre: renowned for its exquisite tapas and live concert sessions. The bar has a dark, luxurious interior with a classic tavern vibe, complementing its extensive menu of wines, beers, and cocktails. 
  • La Barra de la Bien Tirada: a modern cervecería (beer house) that blends Mediterranean influences with informal yet high-quality service. This bar is ideal for casual meetups or after-work gatherings. Its menu ranges from small bites and breakfast options to larger dishes, all served in a bright, sunlit interior.


🏟️ Wizink Center

The barrio de Salamanca isn’t just a hub of modern urban life; it’s filled with important history and notable landmarks. Among its most illustrious attractions is the Wizink Center, a hotspot for cultural and sporting events in Madrid. This venue is a great place to explore the city’s sports and entertainment scene. 

The Estadio Wizink Center was first constructed and inaugurated on 1960, originally known as the the “Palacio de Deportes de la Comunidad de Madrid.” The versatile venue was rebuilt and redesigned following a fire in 2001. Now, the Wizink boasts state-of-the-art facilities for hosting a wide range of events, including concerts, basketball games, and more. Its architectural beauty and historical significance make it a must-visit. The center not only serves as a hub for entertainment but also reflects Madrid’s commitment to fostering a vibrant cultural scene. 

Want to read more about Madrid?


Photo Credits: 

  • Photo 1: Canva Free Media License
  • Photo 2: Warehouse Madrid Instagram – see original post
  • Photo 3: Sumo Instagram – see original post
  • Photo 4: Canva Free Media License
  • Photo 5: Canva Free Media License
  • Photo 6: Canva Free Media License

Have you ever tried kombucha? 

Kombucha is quickly becoming a sensation worldwide. Imagine a refreshing, fermented drink that not only tastes delicious but also offers unique health benefits. Crafted from a blend of tea, yeast, and sugar, Kombucha’s magic ingredient is the “SCOBY” – a symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast. This bacteria turns kombucha into a drink that is, in fact, alive

While the concept of a ‘living’ beverage might seem unusual, Kombucha’s fusion of deliciousness and wellness is something you need to experience. Trust us on this one; you’ve got to try it.   

We are excited to not only jump into the fascinating world of Kombucha, but to also share the inspiring story of one of our Urban Campus colivers. Get ready to meet an inspiring entrepreneur who transformed his affinity for Kombucha into a booming business and one-of-a-kind brand. 


Meet Raul de Frutos: Co-CEO and Co-founder at Viver Kombucha 

Meet Raul de Frutos: Co Founder & Co CEO at Viver Kombucha

Raul de Frutos is a coliver in our UC Atocha, Madrid Coliving and is the Co-CEO and Co-founder of Viver Kombucha. It is nearly impossible to describe Raul in just a few words, but if we had to, it would go something like this: fervently passionate, curious, and downright inspiring. Raul co-founded and runs Viver Kombucha, the #1 fastest growing kombucha brand in Spain in 2023. 

But how did Viver Kombucha come to be? Let’s rewind.

Originally from Cádiz, Spain, Raul moved to Madrid to study Industrial Engineering at the Univerisdad Politécnica de Madrid. It was there where he met Fernando, who would later become his future business partner. During their final year of university, they both decided to go to the United States to complete their degrees in Chicago. Having always been drawn to adventure, Raul loved the challenge of living in a foreign country and exploring the many cultural differences. 

The most important thing Raul did in the US? Drink kombucha. He cited himself as a total kombucha addict during this time, and also witnessed the rapid growth in the drinks popularity. Raul stayed in Chicago for 5 years after graduation, working principally with startups and gaining tons of professional experience. But in the back of his mind, he always had the idea of popularizing Kombucha in Spain. 


The start of Viver Kombucha

Meet Raul de Frutos: Co Founder & Co CEO at Viver Kombucha

Following their five-year stint in Chicago, Raul and Fernando both moved back to Spain with the plan to launch their very own Kombucha venture. They used their savings from the US to establish a dedicated Kombucha factory in Granada. This endeavor involved months of meticulous effort, especially when it came to refining the art of Kombucha brewing on a large scale. 

“We thought we knew how to make Kombucha, but once you start making it at scale it’s completely different. Kombucha is a really wild product and we had many things to learn. We actually went to California to learn from the Kombucha gurus there, and did a lot of consulting and revisions of our process.”

Mastering the kombucha-making process

Meet Raul de Frutos: Co Founder & Co CEO at Viver Kombucha

If you’re curious how Kombucha is brewed, here’s a quick overview of the process. 

  • Brew sweet tea as the base.
  • Add sugar and a SCOBY (Symbiotic Culture Of Bacteria and Yeast) to the tea.
  • The SCOBY eats the sugar, converting it into beneficial acids and probiotics.
  • Let the mixture ferment for about 3-4 weeks.
  • Add organic fruits for flavoring.
  • Allow another week of fermentation to infuse the flavors.
  • Bottle the kombucha.
  • Kombucha is not pasteurized in order to preserve the beneficial bacteria. Therefore, it should be kept refrigerated after production to maintain its quality and health benefits.

Building from scratch

Initially, Raul and Fernando did everything themselves, including hand-labeling every Kombucha bottle. They started with just one single flavor, ginger and turmeric, and went door-to-door asking stores in Granada to stock their product.

Meet Raul de Frutos: Co Founder & Co CEO at Viver Kombucha

Despite initial skepticism from friends and family, their efforts paid off. They sold their first bottle in March 2020, and sales quickly increased. In the early days, Viver Kombucha was only available in herbalists and specialty health food stores. Present day, it’s sold in over 4,000 stores across Spain, including major retailers like El Cortes Ingles and Carrefour. The company has expanded to a team of 20 and is also beginning to enter other European markets. Above all, their commitment to selling healthy products remains stronger than ever. 

“The market is full of drinks that are not healthy for people…I think it’s important that people have healthier options. Working on a product that is good for people really motivates us.” 


Raul & Urban Campus

Meet Raul de Frutos: Co Founder & Co CEO at Viver Kombucha

Raul’s entrepreneurial spirit is fully engaged in leading Viver Kombucha alongside Fernando, where he’s ambitiously expanding the brand to include a variety of fermented and healthful beverages. His vision is far-reaching, seeing kombucha as merely the first step in a larger journey.

Beyond the professional realm, Raul thrives on adventure and excitement. This is evident in his love for travel and socializing, coupled with a strong passion for fitness. He even completed an Ironman in Hawaii while residing in the US!

Passionate about meeting new people, Raul has always found great value in residing with roommates or in shared spaces. This preference led him to Urban Campus, attracted by the prospect of a vibrant, shared community. Since he works from home, Raul cherishes the ability to step out of his private space and spontaneously engage with fellow residents in common areas. Whether coworking together, hitting the gym or going to community pizza nights, the ease of connecting with other colivers in Urban Campus is priceless for him. Plus, the convenience and flexibility offered by Urban Campus is a great bonus for his busy lifestyle as a business owner. 

Want to try Viver Kombucha for yourself? 

  • Check out all their different packs and flavors!
  • Psst…UC members! Check out your UC Member perks for a special discount code.

Meet Raul de Frutos: Co Founder & Co CEO at Viver Kombucha

Let’s get to know the free museums in Madrid 🏢 🌆

Immerse yourself in the artistic heartbeat of Madrid, a city where world-class art and history are accessible to all. Among Madrid’s most enticing attractions are the numerous museums dotted throughout the city, many of which open their doors to the public for free. Madrid’s museums, ranging from timeless classics to modern marvels, showcase the city’s dedication to art, history and more. 

Ready to explore for yourself? Keep reading for our guide to free museums in Madrid.


Free Museums in Madrid: Museo de Historia de Madrid

Free Museums in Madrid - let’s explore the city! 3

The Museo de Historia de Madrid, located in the former Royal Hospice of San Fernando, offers a journey through Madrid’s history from the 16th century to the present. Its collection includes paintings, models, and photographs that depict the evolution of the city. The museum’s highlight is the Allegory of the Villa de Madrid, a painting by Francisco de Goya. Visitors can also explore temporary exhibitions that delve into various aspects of Madrid’s history and culture.

  • Entrance: Free
  • Address: Calle de Fuencarral, 78
  • Opening Hours: Tuesday to Sunday from 10:00 am to 8:00 pm


Espacio Telefónica

Free Museums in Madrid - let’s explore the city! 4

The Telefónica Building, constructed between 1926 and 1929, was originally the headquarters of the National Telephone Company of Spain. In the 21st century, the building underwent a significant transformation to become Espacio Telefónica. The space hosts exhibitions that blend art, science, and technology, offering a unique perspective on the digital world. The museum’s interactive displays and multimedia installations make it a fascinating visit for tech enthusiasts and art lovers alike. 

  • Entrance: Free
  • Address: Calle de Fuencarral, 3
  • Opening Hours: Tuesday to Sunday from 10:00 am to 8:00 pm


Museo Geominero

Free Museums in Madrid - let’s explore the city! 5

The Museo Geominero, housed in the Instituto Geológico y Minero de España, presents a stunning collection of geological treasures. Visitors can marvel at minerals, rocks, and fossils from Spain and its former colonies. The museum’s architecture, with its grand staircase and beautiful stained glass, adds to the experience. It’s a must-visit for anyone interested in geology or natural history.

  • Entrance: Free
  • Address: Calle Ríos Rosas, 23
  • Opening Hours: Every day of the week from 9:00 am to 2:00 pm


Museo del Aire (Air Museum)

Free Museums in Madrid - let’s explore the city! 6

The Museo del Aire, located at the former Cuatro Vientos Airport, offers a fascinating exploration of aviation history. This museum provides an extensive collection of aircraft and aviation-related artifacts. Visitors can see over 150 aircrafts, ranging from early flight models to modern jets, including fighters, bombers, and transport planes. The museum also features engines, weapons, and uniforms, giving a comprehensive view of aviation technology and its impact on history. 

  • Entrance: Free
  • Address: Carretera de Extremadura A-V, Km 10,700
  • Opening Hours: Tuesday to Sunday from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm. Closed on Mondays and public holidays.


Museo Sorolla

Free Museums in Madrid - let’s explore the city! 10

Although not technically free, Museo Sorolla comes close with an extremely-low cost of 3€.

Dedicated to the works of Joaquín Sorolla, this museum is located in the artist’s former home and studio. It offers an intimate glimpse into Sorolla’s life and art, showcasing his luminous, impressionist-style paintings. The museum is surrounded by beautiful gardens, also designed by Sorolla, providing a peaceful retreat in the city. His works, primarily focused on landscapes, portraits, and social themes, reflect the light and color of the Mediterranean. 

  • Entrance: 3€
  • Address: Calle General Martínez Campos, 37
  • Opening Hours: Tuesday to Saturday from 9:30 am to 8:00 pm; Sundays and public holidays from 10:00 am to 3:00 pm. Closed on Mondays.


Museo del Romanticismo

Free Museums in Madrid - let’s explore the city! 7

The Museo del Romanticismo, set in a restored 19th-century palace, offers a glimpse into the Romantic era in Spain. It houses a collection of furniture, paintings, and decorative arts from the 19th century, reflecting the lifestyle and customs of the period. The museum’s highlights include works by Goya and Madrazo, as well as a recreated Romantic-era garden. 

  • Entrance: 3€
  • Address: Calle San Mateo, 13
  • Opening Hours: Tuesday to Saturday from 9:30 am to 6:30 pm. Sundays and public holidays from 10:00 am to 3:00 pm. Closed on Mondays.


Free Museums in Madrid: Museums with Select Free Hours

Free Museums in Madrid - let’s explore the city! 2

In addition to the free museums in Madrid, there are certain museums which open their doors for free during specific hours. This ensures that Madrid’s wealth of art and history is accessible to all, democratizing the cultural experience.

Prado Museum

One of the world’s premier art galleries, the Prado Museum houses an impressive collection of European art. It features works by Velázquez, Goya, and Bosch – just to name a few!

  • Free Entry Hours: Monday to Saturday from 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm, and Sundays and holidays from 5:00 pm to 7:00 pm.

Reina Sofía Museum

The Reina Sofía Museum, focusing on 20th-century art, is home to Picasso’s ‘Guernica’ and other modern masterpieces.

  • Free Entry Hours: Monday and Wednesday – Saturday from 7:00 pm to 9:00 pm, plus Sundays from 12:30 pm to 2:00 pm.

Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum

Offering a comprehensive overview of Western art, the Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum showcases works from the medieval period to the late 20th century.

  • Free Entry Hours: Mondays from 12:00 pm to 4:00 pm.

Museo Nacional de Arqueología

The National Archeology Museum provides a journey through Spain’s rich history, from prehistoric times to the modern era.

  • Free Entry Hours: Saturdays from 2:00 pm and Sunday mornings.

Museo Sorolla

 Celebrating the work of Joaquín Sorolla, the Museo Sorolla also has select free hours. As mentioned before, you can explore the beautiful space which showcases the luminous works of Joaquín Sorolla. 

  • Free Entry Hours: Saturdays from 2:00 pm to 8:00 pm, and Sundays from 10:00 am to 3:00 pm.


Want to read more about Madrid? 


Photo Credits: 

  • All photos used through the Canva Free Media License

Tuesday, November 28th, 2023

Urban Campus has officially announced the opening of a new coliving space: Urban Campus Avenida América, Madrid Coliving!

  • This is a new operation in partnership with the French group Batipart.
  • The new coliving space is scheduled to open in March 2024.
  • With this project, Urban Campus plans to end 2023 operating more than 406 units in Spain.


Urban Campus Avenida América, Madrid Coliving 

Urban Campus announces new Avenida América, Madrid coliving 1

Real estate leader Urban Campus continues its expansion with the opening of a new coliving space in Madrid, named “Urban Campus Avenida América, Madrid Coliving.”

This project will be the company’s sixth coliving in Madrid, located at 23 Béjar Street. It includes 54 units and more than 2,042 square meters with modernly designed rooms, studios, and common areas. The coliving is scheduled to open its doors in March 2024.

Consistent with the ethos of Urban Campus’ coliving spaces, the Avenida de América residence is designed to provide an immersive community-focused living experience. It will feature a array of accommodation options, from private rooms to expansive studios. 

The building also boasts over 105 square meters of space of common zones, embodying the signature Urban Campus experience. These common areas will be comprised of a coworking space, fitness center, communal kitchen, internal patio, and multiple terraces. Plus, there will be dedicated bicycle parking.



Urban Campus announces new Avenida América, Madrid coliving 3

Committed to sustainability, Urban Campus has redesigned and optimized the building to conserve energy and resources. They used furniture for both the common areas and rooms from locally certified ESG brands, including recycled materials and FSC-certified or recycled woods. 

Additionally, the common areas will be equipped with automatic sensors that modulate lighting and air conditioning. This will help promote resource conservation and reduce the building’s environmental footprint.


The Growth of Urban Campus

Urban Campus announces new Avenida América, Madrid coliving 4

The inauguration of Urban Campus’s Avenida América location represents a significant milestone in the company’s expansion journey. Urban Campus has set its sights on concluding 2023 with a substantial portfolio of 406 units under operation. This achievement paves the way for an impressive growth projection, which is forecasted to exceed 200% for the upcoming year of 2024.

With the execution of this new coliving space, Urban Campus also continues to strengthen its relationship with Batipart. Batipart has acted as the investor and promoter for this new building, while Urban Campus is developing the design and will manage its daily operation after opening.


Urban Campus announces new Avenida América, Madrid coliving

Casilda Mulliez, Head of Business Development – Iberia, highlighted: “This new operation represents a significant step in implementing our strategic plan. It will allow us to end 2023 achieving our goal of operating more than 406 beds. We are proud of our sustained growth, and continue to listen to the service and design needs of our residents. This has also helped position us as leaders in terms of the average length of stays, which already exceed 12 months.”


Explore more Urban Campus news here: 

Are you interested in living in Madrid? Well, you couldn’t have chosen a better city. 

Madrid, the remarkable capital city of Spain, is filled with history, culture and intrigue. Every street tells a story and every corner brings a new adventure. 

When moving to any new place, it is normal to feel a mixture of excitement, nervousness, and curiosity. It is important to remember that patience will be your best companion when living in Madrid, especially when navigating the intricacies of Spanish bureaucracy. To ease your transition into this iconic Spanish city, we’ve crafted a guide that highlights some of the essentials for expat life in Madrid. 


Living in Madrid: Madrid Public Transport 

Things to know before living in Madrid 7

Navigating Madrid is a breeze thanks to its world-class public transportation system. The city boasts a comprehensive network. In fact, Madrid has the second-largest metro in Europe and the sixth-largest globally. With over 300 metro stations spread across 12 different lines, accessing every key area in Madrid is convenient and efficient. Not to mention, the metro system is complemented by extensive bus routes and readily available self-service bikes. 

For occasional travelers, the Madrid Metro offers a temporary card system. The purchase of 10 single tickets costs about €12, plus a one-time fee of €2-3 for a reusable card. You can refill this card as needed. If you have any questions, assistance is readily available at metro stations for any queries or help with ticket machines.

For regular commuters, the “abono” personal transport card is a more economical and hassle-free option. To obtain this card, you’ll need a standard passport-sized photo and an original ID document (EU ID, Spanish residency card, or passport). The application process, which can be initiated here, involves a one-time fee of €5 and takes about 10 minutes to complete. Once issued, you can load the card with a 30-day unlimited transport pass.

Madrid’s public transport zones are divided into Zone A (central Madrid) and Zone B (the outskirts). The monthly abono pass rates vary by age group and zone:

  • Youth Tickets or “Abono Joven” (7 – 25 years): €20/month for access to both Zones A & B.
  • Standard Tickets (26 – 64 years): €54.60/month for Zone A and €63.70/month for Zone B.
  • Senior Tickets (65+): €3.30 for access to both Zones A & B.

Abono Joven

The “Abono Joven” in Madrid, which is a transport pass specifically for young people, is priced at 20 euros and is valid for travel in all zones. In 2023, there were special discounts for this pass: it was priced at 10 euros in January and 8 euros from February to June. These reduced prices were part of a promotion, as the regular price for the Abono Joven is 20 euros. 

To monitor potential discounts and updates for the Abono Joven card in Madrid, you can visit the official website of the Community of Madrid’s transportation services. Additionally, balance inquiries and discount information can also be checked through the official Metro de Madrid website. These sources are regularly updated with the latest information regarding fares, discounts, and any special offers associated with the Abono Joven card. 


How to get the Empadronamiento in Madrid

Things to know before living in Madrid 2

The “Empadronamiento” or “Padrón” certificate is a mandatory official document in Spain. The document registers your residential address in the local municipal records. It’s essential for every resident, whether a Spanish national or a foreigner, to acquire this certificate, ideally within the first month of their stay in Spain. This certificate is often required for various administrative procedures and is a prerequisite for obtaining your NIE (Foreigner’s Identification Number).

To successfully apply for the “Empadronamiento,” you must:

  • Complete the application form, which can be accessed here.
  • Present a valid passport and a photocopy of it for each individual being registered.
  • Submit proof of your residence address in Spain.
  • Schedule an appointment through the provided link, selecting “Padrón” as the category and then choosing “Certificado de Empadronamiento” as the service.

Securing this registration is a crucial step in establishing legal residency and accessing services in Spain.


How to obtain an NIE number in Spain

Things to know before living in Madrid 3

The “NIE” (Número de Identidad de Extranjero) serves as a Foreigner Identity Number in Spain. It is an essential identification document, different from a tax identification number, and is closely linked to your residence status and social security within the country. For individuals planning to reside in Spain for over three months, obtaining an NIE is a legal necessity. This is applicable to both EU and non-EU citizens.

Acquiring an NIE requires in-person application; the number cannot be processed online. It’s advisable to schedule your appointment in advance, preferably before your arrival in Spain, to ensure a smoother process.


How to schedule an NIE appointment? 

Things to know before living in Madrid 1

Scheduling an NIE appointment in Madrid is a straightforward process that can be completed online. Individuals planning to move to or work in Spain must request an appointment through the official website of the Spanish government. 

To begin, select the province where you will reside, in this case – Madrid. The website provides a step-by-step guide, allowing you to choose the relevant service and available time slots. It’s essential to prepare and bring the necessary documents, including your passport and any other required paperwork, to the appointment. Due to high demand, it’s advisable to schedule your appointment well in advance of your planned move to Spain​​​​​​.

At your appointment, you will need: 

  • A completed NIE application form.
  • Your original passport, valid and current, along with a photocopy.
  • Two recent, passport-sized photographs of yourself.
  • Payment of the €10.71 government fee.


How to set up a bank account in Spain

Setting up a bank account in Spain, while not mandatory, is highly advisable for those planning to reside in the country. It streamlines your financial transactions, saving you from the often costly currency conversion fees and credit card commissions.

In Spain, you’ll encounter two primary categories of bank accounts:

  • Resident Accounts: Intended for individuals who have established residency in Spain.
  • Non-Resident Accounts: Designed for individuals residing outside of Spain.

It’s worth noting that opening a non-resident account may be simpler, but resident accounts typically offer greater flexibility and benefits.

The following documents are typically required to open a bank account in Spain:

  • Valid passport as proof of identity.
  • Your NIE (Número de Identidad de Extranjero) or Foreigner Identity Number.
  • Proof of address, such as a utility bill or rental agreement.
  • Evidence of your employment status, like a student card or employment contract.

Several banks in Spain, including LaCaixa, Bankinter, Santander, and Sabadell, may offer account opening services without requiring an NIE number.

Spanish banks generally operate from 8:30 AM to 2:30 PM, Monday to Friday, so be mindful of these hours when planning your visit. 


It’s Time to Enjoy Madrid!

Now that you’ve got all of the logistics taken care of, it is finally time to embrace Madrid for the incredible city that it is. 

Madrid, the vibrant capital of Spain, is renowned for its high quality of life, a factor that continually attracts expats from all corners of the globe. The city offers a unique blend of historical splendor, exemplified by landmarks like the majestic Royal Palace, and modern comforts. Madrid has a rich culture, evident in iconic spots like Plaza Mayor. Plus there are a plethora of opportunities for both work and leisure, making Madrid a sought-after destination for those seeking an enriching expat life.

For expats, Madrid offers an appealing balance between professional opportunities and a lifestyle that allows for personal growth and exploration. The ability to work remotely has opened doors for many to live in Madrid while maintaining ties to their home country. The city’s well-connected transport system, vibrant social scene, and the plethora of cultural experiences ensure that living in Madrid is never dull. 

This dynamic blend makes Madrid stand out amongst other European capitals, providing an alluring mix of traditional Spanish charm and contemporary living for its diverse expat community.

Explore more about Madrid here: 


Photo Credits: 

  • All photos used through the Canva Free Media License

Welcome to Madrid’s Vegan Scene!

Madrid, a capital city known for its rich culture and culinary diversity, has seen a significant surge in vegan options over the past few years. Gone are the days when vegan restaurants were a rarity; today, Madrid boasts a thriving vegan scene that caters to all palates.

The city’s shift towards veganism isn’t just a trend, it’s a reflection of a growing global awareness around healthy eating and sustainability. Madrid’s culinary landscape continues to evolve, with chefs and restaurants of all types embracing plant-based ingredients to create mouthwatering dishes.


The Best Vegan Restaurants in Madrid

Mad Mad Vegan

The Best Vegan Restaurants in Madrid

Mad Mad Vegan is a gem for those seeking a contemporary vegan dining experience in Madrid. This restaurant is celebrated for its innovative and flavorful plant-based meals, especially known for towering plant-based burgers, scrumptious fries, and delectable desserts like brownies and tiramisu. It’s a go-to place for vegans who crave variety and taste. They have 2 locations, one in Chueca and the other in Lavapiés. 

Distrito Vegano

Distrito Vegano is an elegant restaurant with chic interior design and plenty of space. The restaurant’s menu is impressive to say the least. They offer a delectable classic breakfast menu, plus additional highlights that include Thai and Japanese burgers, Smoked Galette, and Boeuf Bourguignon. 


The Best Vegan Restaurants in Madrid

VEGA, situated in the center of Madrid, combines artistic presentation with high-quality ingredients. The 100% vegan menu features a wide range of options such as tacos, pizzas, burrata, eggplant teriyaki, poke, hamburgers, and ever-changing options of new dishes.

Freedom Cakes Cafe

The Best Vegan Restaurants in Madrid

Freedom Cakes Cafe in Madrid offers plant-based alternatives to classic American diner food. That’s right – this cafe has a 100% vegan menu with milkshakes, high stacks of pancakes, bagels and more. There are also hearty lunch options like tacos and hamburgers. The interior of Freedom Cakes Café is brightly decorated, evoking the nostalgic ambiance of an old-fashioned 50s diner. It is a certainly an unforgettable dining experience! 


Vegan Cafés & Brunch

Bite Me Café

Bite Me Café is known for its innovative range of vegan donuts, offering one-of-a-kind flavors like carrot cheesecake, vanilla matcha, and jalapeño popper. They even introduce a new flavor every week! But the cafe isn’t just about donuts; they also serve a variety of breakfast, brunch, and lunch options, including bagels and sandwiches. 

VegAmazing Doughnuts 

The Best Vegan Restaurants in Madrid

VegAmazing Doughnuts stands out for its handcrafted, 100% vegan donuts, showcasing a range of creative flavors such as lavender and tiramisu. Imagine donuts that are the size of your face! Additionally, customers can indulge in soft, melty cinnamon buns and high-quality coffee.

Zenith Brunch & Cocktails – Valverde

Zenith at Valverde is a fantastic destination for vegan brunch enthusiasts in Madrid. Famous for its brunch and cocktail menu, Zenith has 2 locations (Malasaña and near Gran Via). The menu includes a variety of starters like nachos, hummus, and banana bread, plus breakfast options like pancakes and açaí. If you’re looking for something heavier, you can choose from burgers, salad bowls, jackfruit tacos and even vegan shakshuka! 

While not exclusively vegan, Zenith provides plenty of vegan options. Their drink deals are also unbeatable – for example, 1 liter of mimosas for 25 euros!

Santa y Pura

The Best Vegan Restaurants in Madrid

Santa y Pura presents a laid-back vegan bar ambiance, offering a fusion yummy snacks and tapas. Think sandwiches, toasts, burritos, and pizza. To complement the food, Santa y Pura also has a nice selection of wines, beers, and kombucha.


Vegan Restaurants with International Food

Kathmandu Tandoori House

For those craving vegan-friendly Indian and Nepali cuisine, Kathmandu Tandoori House in Madrid is a top choice. While not exclusively a vegan restaurant, it’s highly accommodating of vegan preferences. They offer richly spiced, flavorful choices with a willingness to carefully work around food intolerances. 


The Best Vegan Restaurants in Madrid

Choose, located in the artistic La Latina neighborhood, epitomizes Italian cuisine in a vegan format. This Italian restaurant is renowned for its diverse and authentic menu, offering traditional foods like Arancinetti, Carbonara, and Gnocchi – all 100% vegan. 

Los Andenes Vegan

In Chamberí, Los Andenes Vegan has a menu of traditional Peruvian food with purely vegan ingredients. The menu features a diverse selection ranging from Alfredo noodles to vegan pork rinds, plus fish-style bites, hamburgers, empanadas, and fried sweet potatoes. 

Pizzi & Dixie

Pizzi & Dixie stands out as another must-visit destination for Italian cuisine lovers in Madrid. This restaurant specializes in vegan pizzas and pastas, adhering to a 100% plant-based menu. They pride themselves on using fresh quality products, with a large variety of fresh pasta and artisanal pizza doughs prepared in the Neapolitan tradition.


Health-Focused Vegan Restaurants

Hakuna Matata Veggie

Hakuna Matata Veggie has a casual and welcoming atmosphere in Madrid, ideal for those who prefer health-conscious dining. This restaurant is known for its wide range of nutritious vegan meals, including cheese boards, lentil burgers, and flavorful stir-fries with heura and beyond meat. Their rice-based dishes are also highly acclaimed. 

Almalibre Açaí House 

The Best Vegan Restaurants in Madrid 2

For açaí enthusiasts, Almalibre is as good as it gets. You can create your own personalized açaí bowl with a variety of toppings, including fruits, seeds, chocolate, peanut butter, and coconut flakes. Beyond açaí, they have a comprehensive vegan menu featuring diverse options such as wraps, hearty sandwiches, quinoa bowls, and even plant-based hot dogs. The ambiance is enhanced by the presence of lush green plants and pastel furniture, perfect for a laid-back meal.

Level Veggie Bistro

Located on the edge of Retiro Park in Sainz de Baranda is Level Veggie Bistro. This restaurant stands out with its elegant setting and a focus on fresh, wholesome vegan cuisine. The diverse menu ranges from lasagna to sushi to vegetable woks, complemented by a full dessert selection. 

Masa Madre Vegan Food

Masa Madre Vegan Food is located on the outskirts of Madrid and recognized for its artisanal approach to vegan cuisine. They focus on homemade, high-quality dishes made with whole ingredients. Masa Madre offers a variety of options including a pea protein burger, rigatoni, and curry, with an emphasis on sustainable packaging and a dog-friendly environment. Plus, they gluten-free options available! 


Hungry for more recommendations? Check out more of our food-related articles…


Photo Credits: