SHOPPING IN MADRID
Madrid shopping tours and shopping areas
We indicate Madrid’s best shopping districts, which you can find on the partial maps, in addition to the shopping information you need. It is practically impossible to suggest only one route when going out for shopping in the city, since the necessities of each traveler eminently vary. We can, however help you so that you spend time in the areas most representative of a day of shopping in Madrid and therefore see your needs satisfied. Basically, the city in itself is one big shopping center, since it is easy to find a shop on every street and on every corner.
We highlight six areas of shops in Madrid, due to the great variety of merchandise that is concentrated within them. Beyond these shopping streets, we must not leave out the principal malls in Madrid.
Situated in the select area known as Barrio de Salamanca, Calle Goya is one of Madrid's main shopping streets. This emblematic street is home to literally hundreds of shops and exudes a unique, exclusive ambience, a veritable showcase of luxury for those who can afford it. Boutiques, jewellers and elite shopping centres stand amongst the more commonplace high-street fashion outlets aimed at younger shoppers, endowing the area with a high-class, yet casual, atmosphere.
Such features make Calle Goya the perfect middle ground between the exclusiveness of the "Milla de Oro" (Golden Mile), comprised of Calle Ortega, Calle Gasset and Calle Serrano, and the more conventional ambience of such streets as Calle Princesa and Calle Preciados.
We cannot conclude this trip through the principal shopping areas without mentioning the most 'chic' part of Madrid: the Goya-Serrano area. Perhaps the most important signature fashions to be found in Madrid are on these two streets in the Salamanca neighborhood. There you can enjoy the shops of the most important designers like Valentino, Yves Saint Laurent, Lacoste, Donna Karan, Channel, Gianni Versace, Gucci and more. Neither can we forget the renowned designers of our own country such as: Pedro del Hierro, Vittorio y Lucchino, Adolfo Dominguez, Hermenegildo Zegna, Agata Ruiz de la Prada, etc.
The majority of the shops concentrated on Serrano Street are situated between Maria de Molino and Puerta de Alcala. Besides boutiques, you can also find large department stores like El Corte Ingles.
The shops on Goya Street start at the intersection of Goya and Alcala and go to Plaza de Colon.
Shopping in Madrid has here its own paradise, the most “chic” and elegant area in the
Community. The most luxurious boutiques are found in streets such as Serrano, Castelló, Goya,
Velázquez, Jorge Juan, Príncipe de Vergara and Ortega y Gasset - an area that is a true pleasure to
Some of the most prestigious houses worldwide are found in these streets: the prêt-à-porter of the Italian Versace or the refinement and simplicity of Hermès. Dolce&Gabanna and Chanel also have their premises in large spaces full of sophistication and of the avant-garde. Essential stops in the area are the Giorgio Armani, Valentino and Louis Vuitton shops. However, it is on Serrano street that we find one of the most prestigious fashion and accessories establishments worldwide: Loewe, which makes passers-by stop and admire exclusive garments and accessories both for men and women.
Spanish fashion is also represented in the most luxurious area in the city: Victorio&Lucchino, Adolfo Domínguez, Roberto Verino and Elena Benarroch open their spectacular establishments to offer first-quality, latest design products to their exclusive clients.
Jewels also find a place in this elegant area in the centre of Madrid. Jewellers’ such as Carrera y Carrera, Wempe, Suárez, Brooking, Cartier or the exclusive Bulgari show diamonds and other gems in superb shop windows.
It is in the north of the city, next to the Azca complex and close to Paseo de la Castellana, the Palacio de Congresos (Conference Centre) and the Santiago Bernabéu stadium, the street known as Calle Orense lies in the very heart of Madrid's financial and business area.
The street is full of small shops, galleries and businesses, as well as many fast food establishments and cafés where visitors can relax after a busy day's shopping.
This popular street is equally busy at mid-day as in the early evening, when thousands of nearby office workers make the most of their chance to do some shopping.
The street known as Calle de la Princesa is one of the best known shopping areas in Madrid, as well as the main thoroughfare of the Argüelles neighbourhood. The street runs from Plaza España to Plaza de la Moncloa and is lined on both sides by a large number of businesses and shops, along with many cafés, ideal for a relaxing break.
Department stores, shoe shops, Spanish fashion outlets and accessory stores are just some of the countless possibilities on offer along this ever-popular street, where you can also find restaurants, cinemas, clubs, pubs and discos.
Apart from shopping, this busy street also gives you the chance to admire some of Madrid's most famous buildings, such as Liria Palace, home to the Duchess of Alba on her visits to the capital, and the Cerralbo Museum, situated in nearby Calle Ventura Rodríguez.
To start a trip through the main shopping areas, we will start in the Puerta del Sol. From here, the choices are many; we can go through any of the shops that are found on the plaza itself, where we will be able to buy any souvenir of the city or follow along any of the off-shooting streets from the plaza. Toward the Palacio Real, you can make a full circle, going down Calle Arenal, and returning by Calle Mayor, which allows us to pass by an infinite number of shops of all types, that are concentrated on both sides of the street.
Right in front of the Comunidad de Madrid builring, two pedestrian streets open up. Here most of the Puerta del Sol shops are concentrated. The Calle del Carmen and the Calle Preciados streets (where once you could find the now-vanished department store called Galerias Preciados, which was very important during the 1980s). Here, find tons of articles, from the traditional Mantones de Manila (embroidered silk shawl), to the best Italian or Spanish shoes.
In Preciados street, we find the famous shopping center El Corte Ingles, which currently has expanded to a large section of the surrounding buildings and the clearly dominates the shopping area.
There are also innumerable fashion stores (Benetton, Zara,…) that always seem to be full of people eager to buy. In this area, the crowds never let up during opening hours.
At the end of Preciados, reaching Callao plaza, we find FNAC, one of the biggest music and book stores in the city.
The shopping area that encompasses the streets Calle Preciados (which leads from Calle Callao to Puerta del Sol), Calle Carmen and several smaller, perpendicular streets, is a pedestrian-only zone. Together with Gran Vía, it is one of the busiest areas of the city and always bustling with people when the shops are open. High-street fashion outlets, shoe shops, department stores - one of which is aimed solely at leisure and culture - and traditional establishments entice visitors to this lively part of the city, where you can also enjoy mime artists and street performers. This bustling area, which is very close to the famous Puerta del Sol Square, is even more spectacular during the Christmas period, when it becomes one of the most popular areas for Christmas shopping for both visitors and locals alike. Shoppers flock to see the fabulous Christmas lights and decorations that adorn the entire length of the street.
We can start our High Street shopping itinerary at Preciados street, where we find the wellknown
department store El Corte Inglés, which in the last few years has extended to the
We can also enjoy the great fashion franchises so favoured by the young, where shoppers can find the latest fashion at reasonable prices. Benetton, Zara, Springfield, Mango, among others, are outlets that are always full of lively people ready to buy or browse. For as long as shops are open, the area is always crowded with people. At the end of Preciados street, as we reach Plaza de Callao, we find FNAC, one of the largest stores for music and books in the city.
If we continue our tour of the area, we come to the cosmopolitan and always dynamic Gran Vía. This street is worth a visit and a walk as it is one of the main arteries of the city and one of the streets with a huge number of shops and cinemas.
Many shops set up by first-quality houses are found on Gran Vía, for example, the famous porcelain trademark Lladró. Also, the streets off Gran Via have always boasted of a very lively commercial activity, so shoppers can find clothes stores, shops selling souvenirs and
accessories, all mixed with cinemas, bars and hotels.
If we move slightly away from the area, towards the lower section of Gran Vía street, and after crossing Plaza de España, we reach Princesa street, also crammed with shops along both pavements and with quite a few shopping centres known as “Multicentros” where we can find the latest fashion clothes.
The Chueca district is one of the most genuine and cosmopolitan areas in the city centre.
Within it and coming up to the Almirante area, well-known for its avant-garde and Spanish fashion shops, a great many shops have sprung up for the most daring and contemporary buyers.
The district bustles with life during the day time thanks to small businesses that, in a very short time, have managed to become the backbone of modern Madrid. The shop windows in Chueca combine both originality and the avant-garde. Specifically, the section made
up of little streets perpendicular to Fuencarral and Hortaleza streets is a shoppers’ paradise.
The best example is Fuencarral market, created as an alternative to the traditional and typical department stores. Its interior is colourful and psychedelic, metal combines with soft furry fabrics and the shops form labyrinthine corridors. The market accommodates craftsmen and women, designers and small traders from all over Spain, with such original products that you are not allowed
to take photos.
What makes it really different from the typical department stores is that, for example, there is a DJ that plays music in situ, stores specialized in piercing and tattooing, a surrealist hairdresser’s, shops displaying the latest fashion, gifts, cosmetics. The creative and free atmosphere pervading the market acts as a magnet to attract all kinds of people.
The Fuencarral Market turned out to be so successful that other shops decided to follow suit and open up in the area. Outrageous boutiques, shops selling daring lingerie, shop windows displaying feathers, leathers, sequins. From models to drag-queens, shoppers buy here the latest and most glamorous fashion. Jewels, belts, feather gowns, shoes and boots with unimaginable heels, everything delights the most eccentric clientele.
Zones: Lavapiés & El Rastro
The flea market known as El Rastro can be found in Madrid on Sunday mornings. Starting at the Plaza de Cascorro, the market runs down the section of road known as the 'Ribera de Curtidores'. Here venders set up tables and booths to promote their wares.
While the market is large and packed with people, do not expect to see a market dominated by antiques. Unfortunately, now much of the Rastro's wares are imported items, leather purses, and textiles; used goods are also plentiful.
Take care with your pockets here!
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