Locals love to stay out late in the Spanish capital, but next-day guilt is put to rest with beds in B-Corp hotels, meals at veg-forward restaurants and walks through bucolic botanical gardens.Less
Funky and fashionable, this hotel backs onto trendy Chueca, where beautiful people come to sip vermouth on the tiered terraces of countless bars. The hotel runs exclusively on renewable energy, limits paper waste with electronic bills and gives staff regular training sessions on how to reduce waste. Don’t miss the fun food truck on the roof terrace for healthy snacks and fresh smoothies.
This 20-acre Eden is the perfect place to spend an afternoon with a book on a shady bench. It’s divided into three terraces, each with a unique feel – there’s a fragrant group of medicinal plants, neatly clipped hedges in ornamental shapes, a romantic flower garden and one with a collection of plants and fountains. There’s also a tropical greenhouse. The gardens are right in front of the Prado Museum, home to Goya’s pinturas negras (Black Paintings) and other Spanish works.
Antigua Casa Crespo, the most fabled espadrille maker in the city, has been making shoes for Madrileños every summer for more than 150 years. There are countless knock-off versions, but these are the real deal – made by hand by the fourth generation of the founding family. The faded shopfront is eminently Instagrammable, too.
Provenance is the keyword at this classy joint, tucked away in an old dairy in Chamberí. Everything from the chairs to the cutlery has been thoughtfully selected from small producers, including tableware from a family of potters who’ve been spinning the wheel since 1857. The menu mainly features small plates and includes detailed descriptions of where each ingredient was produced – mostly from organic farms across Spain.
This hip hostel (which feels more like a boutique hotel) is in the heart of Madrid de Los Austrias – the oldest part of the city, just back from the Plaza Mayor. From the outside, it’s all 19th-century elegance, while the inside has a Scandi feel, with white paint and lashings of blonde wood. It’s no slouch in the eco department either, being the first hostel in Madrid to run entirely on biomass energy. Head up to the rooftop to rub shoulders with guests and locals after dark.
Stroll through Retiro Park for dinner at this smart vegetarian bistro, which serves a globetrotting menu focussing on raw dishes. The sleek, warmly lit space is lined with art from emerging artists, while floor-to-ceiling windows are opened up in summer to draw in some of the buzz from the city.
A half-hour outside the city centre, Artiem is an ideal base for a remote-working retreat in Madrid. All rooms have desks with ergonomic chairs, and the Green, a communal space furnished in soothing colours, is a lovely place to do some work. Plus, it has a self-service selection of snacks, teas and coffees. The hotel is also B-Corp certified, meaning it balances profit with purpose.