This is an old bar located on Plaza Dos de Mayo. With its smoke stained walls and old fixtures this place hasn’t really changed since the 70s. The real beauty of this bar is not actually inside. The terrace on Dos de Mayo is a prime spot to pass an afternoon drinking tinto de veranos on a hot summer’s day.
A young hip crowd and relaxed atmosphere. La Realidad specialises in Gin tonic which is a bit of a fad in Madrid. With every bar trying to out do it's neighbour this place holds it's own. One of the things I like most about this bar is that it is constantly changing. The wallpaper alone always seems to be filled with new graffiti or the latest art.
The front has a U-shaped bar dividing the front room in two. Hanging off the bar itself are little books of "micro-poetry". The decoration is interesting in that every seat or chair is different. For instance the back bar is filled with tiny seats. Who knows, maybe there was a local nursery school closing and La Realidad got the tables and chairs cheap.
La bicicleta has a young student vibe with plenty of locals and tourists alike. In the front room you’ll find the bar and a large table. In the back there is a living room type feel with couches and many tables. It is a bit difficult to work out whether they have table service or not. It seems to depend on what time of day it is, in any case I recommend going to the bar and getting yourself a drink or you could be waiting a while.
During the day many people come to access the free wifi and there is an unthreatening cafe type atmosphere which attracts a good mix of people. It is quite normal for several small groups to occupy the same table making it an easy place to strike up a conversation with strangers.
At first glance it appears to be an Irish bar that is trying too hard, a closer look reveals that the dust is real and it’s not an Irish bar at all. It’s a historic bar from 1918 that hasn’t changed in all these years.
The bar itself is beautifully fashioned from zinc and encompasses a sink into the bar itself. It divides the front and back bars.
The ceiling in the front bar has an original fresco. It is standing room only and is usually very busy as you can drink vermouth (which they serve on tap) and have a view out onto Chueca’s main square.
If you want to have a seat or even go to the loo you have to head to the back bar. Not as easy as you would think. Although both the back and front are attended by the same staff, to get to the back bar you have to actually go outside and re-enter on calle San Gregorio. The back of the bar has wooden tables and is usually much less busy.
This is a newly refurbished market that was built on the success of the Mercado de San Miguel. It differs from the more famous Mercado de San Miguel because it is a new building with a clean and trendy touch as opposed to the traditional market in the city centre.
There is a terrace bar at the top which is surprisingly not too expensive considering the clientele and the area. On the second floor there are many stalls serving tapas of all types. Again the prices are not as high as you would have thought from the look of the place.