Plaza de Oriente, Madrid

4.5 out of 5 stars 34 Reviews

Between Royal Palace and Opera House

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  • Plaza de Oriente
    Plaza de Oriente
    by Veroali
  • Plaza de Oriente
    Plaza de Oriente
    by Veroali
  • The statues in Plaza de Oriente
    The statues in Plaza de Oriente
    by Veroali
  • agarcia's Profile Photo

    The King doesn't live here anymore

    by agarcia Updated Apr 4, 2011

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    The Palace by night

    Nope, Royalty could not be found here, as their official residence is the less exposed venue of Zarzuela palace. The King and Queen would only be found here during official receptions and events of similar nature... So chances of seeing the Royal family in person could be accounted to more or less 0, as neither you nor me are likely to be invited to this kind of events ;-). Anyway, the beautiful ornamented halls of the palace are open to the public (open from 9.30 to 17.00h mon-sat, 9.00 to 14.00h sun).

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  • tzuki's Profile Photo

    A beautiful Square to walk around

    by tzuki Written Jul 22, 2010

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    The Plaza de Oriente was built during the reign of Joseph Bonaparte with the aim to protect the Royal Palace against uprisings. The square is marked by the beautiful garden in the center, with plants and fountains.
    It is said that Galileo helped to do the calculations for its design :)

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  • Veroali's Profile Photo

    Plaza de Oriente

    by Veroali Updated Jan 25, 2010

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    Plaza de Oriente
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    Plaza de Oriente is located right in front of Royal Palace. In the middle of the square stands a fountain with a statue of Philip IV. on his horse.
    The interesting thing about Plaza de Oriente is, that at the side stand several statues of monarchs and important persons, which (as our friend told us) were supposed to stand on the top of the palace. After they had been made, it was found out, that they are too heavy to be placed on the palace, so since that time they stand in the park and between the green colour of trees and plants, i think it fits them much more there on the ground.

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  • keeweechic's Profile Photo

    Plaza de Orienta

    by keeweechic Written Sep 27, 2009

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    The Plaza de Oriente was once an central meeting place for state events where Royalty made public appearances on the balcony of the Palace which faces the Plaza. The inspiration for the plaza was from King Joseph I who was Napoleons brother and who ruled Spain from 1808 to 1813.

    In the centre of the Plaza is a statue to Felipe IV.

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    The Royal Theatre (Teatro Real)

    by fachd Written May 31, 2009

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    The Royal Theatre (Teatro Real) was ceremonially inaugurated by the Queen Isabella II on November 19th 1850. In the past Verdi and Wagner operas, works by Stravinsky and Russian ballet performed at the theatre.

    Today it has one of the largest stages in the world. The theatre annual programs are diverse from classical to the contemporary.

    Plaza de Oriente, s/n Madrid, 28013

    Nearest Train: Ópera

    Fax: +34 91 516 0651

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  • fachd's Profile Photo

    The bronze statue of Philip IV

    by fachd Written May 31, 2009

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    Philip IV on a horseback
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    The bronze statue of Philip IV in Plaza de Oriente was erected in 1843. It was commissioned by Italian sculptor Pietro Tacca’s who begun work in 1634 and designed the statue based on drawing by Spanish artist Velaquez.

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  • fachd's Profile Photo

    Madrid Famous Square

    by fachd Written May 31, 2009

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    Plaza de Oriente square was constructed during Joseph Bonaparte and completed during the reign of Isabel II. The Plaza locations are between Palacio Real (Royal Palace) and Teatro Real (Opera House). The square shapes are surrounded by beautiful garden with beautiful flowers arrangements and manicured small trees. In the middle of Plaza de Oriente stand impressive statue of Phillip IV. If you walk around the garden of the plaza there are several statutes of Spain's monarchs.

    Apparently Plaza de Oriente comes alive at night with live music. Unfortunately we did not experience the night activities.

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  • cinthya_in_victoria's Profile Photo

    Plaza de Oriente

    by cinthya_in_victoria Written Dec 31, 2008

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    Here you find the statues of formers Spain's kings.
    This is a very beautiful place facing another beauty: the Royal Palace. There were two street musicians playing Spanish songs so, imagine how happy I felt while walking in there!
    There is a statue of Felipe IV.

    Great place for picnic or just relax if you feel tired after visiting the Royal Palace and the Almudena House.

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  • traceyspacey's Profile Photo

    Plaza de Oriete-walk around or sit and relax

    by traceyspacey Written Aug 13, 2008

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    Trees in the centre of Plaza de Oriente
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    This sits east of the Royal Palace, hence it's name. Madrid owes this place to Spain's 'Non-King' Joseph Bonaparte. He ordered the clearing to start during his brief reign (1803-1813). It was left as a dusty space until 1844. Moving on, during the dictatorship, devotees from all over Spain came for a glimpse of Franco, who addressed from the Royal Balcony. In the centre of the square is an equestrian statue of King Philip IV.

    This is a good place to have a wander around or to enjoy a cold drink. There is a playground nearby for children.

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  • DanielF's Profile Photo

    Wander Around Orient Square

    by DanielF Updated Jun 13, 2008

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    The Goth Kings
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    This large crescent-shaped garden separates the opera and the Royal Palace and, therefore is one of the most popular spots of Madrid with tourists. It is believed that its name refers to the fact that the square faces the Eastern façade of the Royal Palace. Oddly enough, the Royal Palace has become known as Orient Palace for assimilation with the Square's name, despite the fact that it is located in the Occident of the city.

    The present configuration of Orient Square was laid down in the 19th century by Narciso Pascual. It is presided by a 17th century bronze statue of King Philip IV by Pietro Tacca, which is said to be the first equestrian statue where the horse stands only on two hooves.

    In the gardens, you will also find some rather crude statues depicting various early Spanish Kings. They are locally known as the Goth Kings, but some of the first Christian Kings after the Reconquista are also represented. Not that the artist who sculpted them were not skilful enough, but they simply were not designed to be observed from the ground perspective. They make part of a collection that included all the Spanish kings, intended to decorate the roof of the adjacent Royal Palace. For fear that the structure of the building would not support their weight, the sculptures were recycled for the "ornamentation" of different gardens and parks in the city, including Orient Square, the Sabatini Gardens and the Retiro Park.

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  • DanielF's Profile Photo

    Attend an Opera in the Royal Theatre

    by DanielF Updated May 27, 2008

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    The Royal Theatre hosts Madrid's opera house and counterbalances the monumental façade of the Royal Palace on the opposite side of Orient Square. It was built in the 19th century under the sponsoring of Queen Elizabeth II, following plans of Antonio López Aguado and Custodio Moreno, who designed an elegant and austere building inspired by the great Italian theatres like La Scala or San Carlo. In the interior of the hexagon-shaped building the impressive Royal loggia, designed to cater for the needs of the monarchs, is worth of admiration. The Theatre was inaugurated in 1850 with the occasion of the queen's birthday. The chosen opera for that event was La Favorita by Donizetti.

    The Royal Theatre has had a tormented history since its very opening. Due to mismanagement, it was a complete economic fiasco. Damaged by fires and general decay, it had to be closed in the early 20th century. It was restored decades later but, due to the lack of funds, only as a concert hall. From that time it hosted such prosaic events as the only Eurovision Song Contest ever held in Spain, in 1969.

    Only in the 1990's a new restoration project allowed for the transformation of the theatre into a proper Opera house. This last remodelling project was particularly controversial: it took many more years than it was expected; and resignations, accidents and scandals were common during that time, feeding the legend of a supposedly haunted theatre full of phantoms of the opera. Fortunately, since the reopening, Madrid has rediscovered its place in the world map of the queen of performing arts.

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  • Redang's Profile Photo

    Plaza de Oriente (Oriente Square)

    by Redang Updated Mar 23, 2008

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    Plaza de Oriente (Madrid, Espa��a/Spain)
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    This big square dates back to 1.844 and became just pedestrian in the last years of the 20th century.

    The square offers:
    - The statue of King Felipe IV (in the middle), built in the 17th century by Pietro Tacca.
    - Beautiful gardens surrounded by statues of former Kings of Spain.
    - Palacio Real (Royal Palace).
    - Catedral de la Almudena (Almudena Cathedral).
    - Teatro Real (Royal Theatre or Opera House).
    - Real Mnasterio de la Encarnación (Encarnación Monastery).

    These places have their own tip.

    PS: Oriente means orient (east), but the square is on the west of Madrid, funny, isn't it?

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  • seasonedveteran's Profile Photo

    Park near the Palace

    by seasonedveteran Written Mar 18, 2008

    This is the perfect location for some summertime shade, and awesome impressive monumental ponds and such; right near a palace that puts buckingham Palace to shame. Located exactly next to the royal palace, go here and steal a bench to take it all in and take a deep breathe.

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  • seasonedveteran's Profile Photo

    Park near the Palace

    by seasonedveteran Written Mar 18, 2008

    This is the perfect location for some summertime shade, and awesome impressive monumental ponds and such; right near a palace that puts buckingham Palace to shame. Located exactly next to the royal palace, go here and steal a bench to take it all in and take a deep breathe.

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  • Urzu's Profile Photo

    Plaza de Oriente and the Royal Theater

    by Urzu Written Jan 17, 2008

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    Plaza de Oriente

    Right in front of the Royal Palace you will find the Plaza de Oriente, a magnificent square that keeps in harmony with the "royal feel". Classical lines, open garden, statues and so on. Also in this square you will be able to find the Royal Theater. This theater is, although not particularly appealing architecture-wise, one of the most important theaters in Spain. There you will be able to watch different Operas and concerts, and althought I still haven't gone to any yet (that's still a must-do on my list!!), I'm sure that quality will always be present!

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