Having loved hanging out in Malasaña, people watching in the local cafes, browsing the fantastic artisan shops and the studenty/hipster vibe, why then did we choose Chamberi for the next project?
Bordering the Centro (Malasaña) to the southwest and Barrio Salamanca to the east, Chamberi has a very different feel. Often described as 'castizo', meaning the most Madrileño of barrios, it is a very classic part of the city, comprising imposing buidlings, well maintained and often grand portales or entrances, and just as elegant residents.
Our flat, in the subdistrict of Trafalgar, is located on the quiet tree lined Calle Gonzalo de Cordoba, just off the popular Plaza de Olivide.
The plaza is packed with bars and restaurants around its circumference, from breakfast until the evenings where you can sample anything from Spanish tortilla, to Italian, Thai, Mexican and the super healthy and delicious fare in Mama Campo, just visited by the King Felipe and his wife.
Dog owners congregate in the square mornings and evenings, and the cafes are busy every day, but on weekends the park really comes into its own and children play on the swings and slides, as the parents and grandparents enjoy the sun and perhaps a coffee or a cold caña and tapas.
Though minutes from the busy Castellana avenue, this area still has a village like local neighbourhood feel about it, still with many residents having lived here all their lives - indeed one resident of our building was born in her flat 85 years ago!
Chamberi has been steadily gaining an international reputation as a mecca for foodies, with the nearby Calle Ponzano being the top spot for the latest in ultra trendy tapas bars. As for culture, my favourite museum in Madrid, the Sorolla is also nearly, in neighbouring Almagro Chamberi.