Fun with Friends in Madrid

We were back in Madrid for Halloweekend, which I was extremely excited for. We had a bunch of friends from Santa Barbara visit for the weekend. Livy came from Florence, Makenna came fro Sicily, Noemi came from Maastricht-Netherlands and Rachel came from Prague! They all stayed at our apartment and we had such a great weekend. The first night that they were here (Thursday) was actually Halloween, so we went out to dinner at this cute little tapas place called Tapa, Tapa and our friends fell in love with the idea of tapas, haha. I hadn’t had them in a while because I got tired of them really quickly, but I forgot how good they are when you actually have good tapas. That night, we dressed up in Halloween costumes and went to a really fun Halloween party. It was a good way to show them what Madrid night life is like right away.

Retro ceiling of La Vía Lâctea Bar
Iconic patatas bravas

The next morning, we got up and got the most amazing brunch at Federal Café right near our apartment. Usually we go there just to study and drink coffee, but this brunch was an amazing discovery. After brunch, we decided to take to the streets of Madrid. We walked all the way to Plaza Cibeles, stopping at little shops and cafes as we went. We ended up in Malasaña and we all thrifted for a bit because Malasaña has the best thrift shops that we have seen. It was fun just walking around and exploring Madrid because there is still a lot of the city I haven’t even seen yet, so that was a really good touristy thing to do. Oh, it was also Noemi’s birthday! We made reservations at Inclan Brutal Bar, which is an iconic burrata place near our house. We had the most amazing dinner, all sharing different plates and drinking nice sangria. While we were eating, the lights went off, music started playing really loudly and, all of a sudden, our waiter walks out with a piece of cake with a sparkler shooting out of the top for Noemi’s birthday! It was such a spectacle and everyone was clapping and whistling for her. After running up an extremely high tab at Inclan, we headed back to our house. We went to the iconic El Tigre bar to continue the festivities and we were all wearing the most colorful wigs that we could find. We were quite the sight to see and caught so many people staring as we were walking through Sol. We turned in a little earlier because we had a reservation at 10am the next morning.

Hazelnut pancakes from Federal Café
Us in wigs (Hailey, Makenna, me, Noemi, Livy and Elena)!

We ate brunch at Carmencita Bar the next morning and got 1 euro mimosas! It was a great start to yet another busy, busy day. After Carmencita, we took the long way back to our apartment, passing by the palace and walking into an indoor market, where we found the absolute BEST gelato that I have ever had in my life. It was this rich vegan chocolate gelato from Gelato Bar; the best food find since being in Madrid that I must take Keli Hows to when she visits in only THREE WEEKS. Next on the list of activities was the famous Retiro Park! We walked all around until we got to the water in the middle where we sat and talked and got a drink; a perfect pit-stop along the man-made lake. For dinner, we knew that we had to go to Takos al Pastor…obviously. The line was so incredibly long, but we stuck to our wits and waited out the 40-minute line because takos were so worth it. They lived up to the hype and our friends were in agreement. That night, we went out with everyone one final time. We decided to go to Areia Bar, where I had the best Sex on the Beach cocktail of my entire life. Delicious. After drinking and dancing a bit, we moved on to La Vía Lâctea bar, which we have been to before, but on a random Wednesday night. On Saturday, the bar was alive and buzzing with people. There was music playing and lights and a seemingly intense pool game happening that we were watching. This bar was one of my favorites because of all of the band posters lining the walls and casual drinking atmosphere that is always my favorite.

Retiro Park
In front of the glass palace in Retiro (Jackie, Elena, me, Makenna, Hailey, Noemi, Livy and Rachel)

The next morning everyone left and our house felt so incredibly empty 😦 We had such a great weekend, but it was sad to know I won’t see mis amigas until we are back in IV in January. Overall, we had such an amazing time and we explored so much more of Madrid, which I was so grateful for. I love having visitors and being able to show them my new, temporary home 🙂

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