12 days in Spain & 4 days in Paris- 9/12/14- 9/9/28/14


Madrid -Day 1 Madrid -Day 2

Madrid- Day 2 - Breakfast

We stopped by Meson Cinco Jotas for Breakfast on Calle de Arenal.

Cinco Jotas is a Spanish chain restaurant that are know for the high end Jamón. In the world of Jamón, if you are awarded Cinco Jotas (Five Js) for your jamón, it’s like getting the best of the best award.

We ordered a Desayuno 5J

It is a long crispy baguette filled with Jamón


We also ordered Desayuno campana served on a crispy bread filled with dry sausage.


The breakfast came with Orange juice and coffee.

So far the best breakfast was in Seville.  This one was just okay.

Plaza de Orientale

Before getting to the palace you have to go through the Plaza de Orientale. 


A huge bronze statue of Felipe IV (Philip IV of Spain) stands in the middle of the Plaza de Oriente. The statue was commission by Felipe IV (1605 –1665) the then king of Spain, to stand in the middle of the park.

Equestrian statue of Philip IV, was made by Pietro Tacca in 1640.

The statue was based upon a painting of Velazquez, called: "Equestrian portrait of Philip IV".  The complication of the image was that the horse was rearing up, so that the entire weight of the statue would have to be carried by the two behind legs. The revolutionary sculptor Tacca believed it could be done. He needed the mathematical calculations of the genius Galileo, in order to get the statue to hold it upward position. Galileo assisted with the precise calculations and documents still exist today and on display in Italy. His solution was to place the centre of the gravity of the statue as far back as possible. This the rear part of the statue is made of solid bronze and the top part is hollow. The precise weights and measures were determined by Galileo, who claimed the statue would stand forever and it did! 


You can read and inscription underneath the statue: para gloria de las artes y ornato de la capital erigio isabel segunda este monumento

Translated to: To the glory of the arts and beautification of the capital erected this monument By Isabel II


Palacio Real de Madrid-Royal Palace of Madrid

The Royal Palace of Madrid is the third greatest palace after Versailles and Vienna's Schönbrunn Palace.  It is the official residence of the Spanish Royal Family, but it is only used for state ceremonies. King Felipe VI (the new King of Spain) and the Royal Family do not reside in the palace, choosing instead the more modest Palacio de la Zarzuela on the outskirts of Madrid.

Palacio Real de Madrid was initially a fortress built around 875 by Muhammed I called the Alcazar.  In 1536 Charles V, as part of his general initiative for improving a number of royal palaces, commissioned a major reworking of the palace. But almost 200 years later, a fire on Christmas Eve 1734 destroyed nine centuries of history but enabled the new dynasty to build a new palace.

King Philip V of Spain , born in Versailles and has a French upbringing wanted to make the Palacio his own private Versailles and ordered a new palace built on the same site. Construction spanned the years 1738 to 1755

East facade of the building

The exterior of the Palace has the French-Italian Baroque architecture that was very popular in the 18th century, with heavy columns, classical looking statues, a balustrade roofline, and false front entrance.  The entire building is made of gray and white local stone and very little wood was use to prevent the kind fire that previously consumed the old palace.


The palace is enormous with 2,800 rooms and still functions as the ceremonial palace used for formal state receptions, royal wedding.


View of the city as we can getting closer to the palace






Cost to get in per person is €10

We were lucky as the rain stopped so we were able to walk around.

As soon as you walk in there is a huge square


Almudena Cathedral seen from inside the royal palace

Almudeba Cathedral is the Catholic cathedral in Madrid, and is the seat of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Madrid. It was consecrated by Pope John Paul II in 1993.


We can only seen part of the Palace and this is the entrance.


Quite a view of the city from the Royal Palace.


The Grand Stairs are grandiose and imposing.

Whenever high end dignitaries arrive, fancy carpets are rolled down the stairs and I am sure it is really impressive.




White and blue ceiling fresco showing the Spanish king sitting on clouds and surrounded by female Virtues.


Before entering the first room, on the left you will see a bust Philip V who began the Bourbon dynasty in Spain in 1700

Philip V was the grandson of Louis XIV, reluctantly assumed the Spanish throne in 1700.  Philip was the first member of the House of Bourbon to rule as king of Spain and lineage still continues to rule Spain today.

On the right you will see a bust of King Philip V's wife,

Hall of Halberdier

The room is named after the Halberdiers who formed the Royal Guard in charge of the protection of the Royal Family, with military jurisdiction in the entire Palace complex. 

After taking this picture I was told to put my camera away as photos inside the palace are not allowed.

Hallway on our way out of the Palace.


 Loan and I with the Royal guards.


The Royal guards at the entrance.

One of many gardens surrounding the Royal Palace

Plaza de España

Plaza de España  "Spain Square" is a large square located at the western end of the Gran Vía and close to the Royal Palace. It features a monument of Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra, the Spanish novelist, poet, and playwright.  He wrote Don Quixote which is a classic in Western literature, and is regarded amongst the best works of fiction written.

A sculpture of Cervantes on top in white overlooks his fictional characters Don Quixote and Sancho Panza.



Bronze statue of Don Quixote and Sancho Panza


Close look at Cervantes statue

Don Quixote and Sancho Panza in the front and Cervantes in the background.

Interesting building on Plaza de Espana.  They looked like real tree's trunk.

Plaza de Mayor

Plaza Mayor was built during Philip III's reign (1598–1621) and is is located only a few Spanish blocks away from the Puerta del Sol.


The Plaza Mayor is rectangular in shape, and is surrounded by three-story residential buildings having 237 balconies facing the Plaza. It has a total of nine entranceways.

I don't mind having an apartment in this square..

What a great view!


Next.. Centro de Arte Reina Sofia



Our house


Photo Gallery

 Mon  petit coin