The winter season is never quite complete without Thodos Dance Chicago’s annual winter concert. The vibrant contemporary dance troupe consistently delivers exciting and fresh choreography but this season’s show commemorates the company’s 20th anniversary so expect an extra special performance. Read More »
Nashville may be noted for music but the city’s art scene is also impressive. There are dozens of art galleries and art museums that line the streets of downtown Nashville and the best way to get a sense of the art scene is at the First Saturday Art Crawl. Scheduled for the first Saturday of every month, the free event features wine, refreshments and the chance to view and purchase amazing art. Read More »
I was in Madrid for a travel trade show, and stayed in the lively neighborhood of Chueca, which I highly recommend. On a budget, I roomed at the pocketbook-friendly Hostal Cibeles, which is probably one of the best deals in Madrid at the moment. The well-appointed, family-run hotel had it all, except for a restaurant.
Cibeles’ lacking of food and beverage forced me our onto c/Barco, where I was met by El Apolo Cafe, directly across the street from the hotel. El Apolo Cafe is small, busy, cozy and inexpensive. They serve simple breakfast items in the morning (no eggs and bacon here) and cocktails in the evening. There’s a long bar and several mismatched tables around a eccentrically decorated living room, where patrons sip gin&tonics (all the rage) on snug sofas and antique-looking chairs. It’s a very pleasant ambiance.
I don’t think El Apolo is a ‘gay bar’ but certainly Chueca is known for its gay scene and El Apolo was not exactly straight. Let me put it this way: whatever your persuasion, you’ll be happy at this friendly neighborhood bar. The only downside could be that it’s a small place and fills up quickly.
Calle Barco 18 – Chueca, Madrid
Post by Regina Winkle-Bryan. See more at The Spain Scoop.com!
Photo Credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/fibroblast/
Three budget to mid-range options for sipping in the city:
El Celler del Nou Priorat:
This is a place that most tourists are not going to find, and a place that most locals, unless from the Sants neighborhood, don’t know about. The area around Sants train station is not a Barcelona destination, known for blue-collar housing and its slightly out-of-the-way-location. It’s overlooked and has become popular with artists and students in the last few years. El Celler del Nou Priorat is a basic wine bar in the heart of this neighborhood which serves simple dinners and Priorat wines, among others. It’s no secret that my preferred Catalan wine is a Priorat.
MORE: c/ Vallespir 19
Barcelona Tel: 934-905-952
In the Raval area of the city, RitaRouge is a low-lit, funky bar, perfect for shooting the breeze over cocktails on a Friday night. Though it’s a bit chilly now to use Rita’s large terrace, it’s the spot to be in the spring and summer. Lunch and dinner are also served here.
Ménage à Trois:
First of all, let me say that I have NEVER had good service at Ménage à Trois. But, I keep going back. Why? Because the area it’s in has very little in the way of decent bars. Near it is the Rambla, teeming with crapy, overpriced bars, and further in there’s little apart from shopping. Despite mannerless staff, Ménage à Trois has a sweet terrace and full bar service.
c/ d’en Bot 4
Barcelona Tel: 933-015-542
Post by Regina Winkle-Bryan. See more of her tips on Barcelona at The Spain Scoop.
Photo credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/camkage/