Smoking in bars is still allowed in some places
We were under the impression that Spain had gone completely non smoking like the rest of Europe. So we were a little confused when we were in a bar when somebody picked up and ashtray and lit up a cigarette. We are smokers as well, so it wasn't a problem. Just a bit strange. So we checked on the internet as to how this was allowed. In 2005 smoking was severely restricted. If the area is less than 100 square metres then the owner can chose if it is to be non smoking or smoking. Signs must be displayed outside either way. If the area is larger than 100 square metres then the owner can chose to either be a fully non smoking place. If they decide to allow smokers in then there must be a separate section for smokers.
So, if you want to avoid smokers check the sign on the door first (cigarette with a cross through it)
The 12 grapes
I guess in every country people have their own way to celebrate New Year's Eve. Spaniards are eating grapes. Before midnight they get 12 grapes and have about 2 seconds for each grape to eat.
If you celebrate on the streets of Madrid you'll see many street vendors running around with bags of 12 grapes which they sell for 1 Euro each. And of course you can always show up prepared in advance. Just go to any super market and you'll find canned grapes, exactly 12 of them in a can, cleaned of seeds and skin.
Estadio Vicente Calderon
The Estadio Vincente Calderon is home to the Atletico de Madrid Football Club. It was named after a famous club president Vincente Calderon, although originally called Estadio Manzanares. The Spanish national team plays regular international games in the stadium which can hold 54,851 people. In 2003 it was given a UEFA 5 star stadium rating. The stadium has also been the venue for concerts.
Monumento a la Constitución
This monument, built in 1.979, is dedicated to the Spanish Constitution which was voted by Spanish people on 6 December 1.978.
Architect: Miguel Angel Ruiz-Larrea
Where is it?
Calle de José Gutiérrez Abascal, 2, but it is better to look for Paseo de la Castellana corner calle de Vitruvio, just in front of the Museo Nacional de Ciencias Naturales (National Museum of Natural Sciences).
- Metro: Gregoro Marañón (line 7) or Nuevos Ministerios (lines 6, 8 and 10).
Newly Renovated Teatro Real
The Royal Theater was closed from 1988 until 1997 due to structural problems. However, the new version has been completely modernized while retaining the charm of the original structure (classic opera house balconies, plush seating, etc.). Dress well. No jeans or sneakers.