Friday, December 5, 2008

Happy Christmas, Madrid!

Christmas time is here! In the distance people can perceive the jingle of the reindeer flying over Madrid. When December arrives, the city prepares to transform its habitual image into another much more dynamic, lively and bustling one. The capital's streets put on their best face in order to receive the long awaited event: the lights, the nativity scenes and the Christmas decorations give Madrid a unique and magical touch at Christmas time. In addition, the white holidays bring with them a huge range of activities designed for all kind of people. Christmas in Madrid is a beautiful spectacle that nobody should miss!

The lighting up of the Christmas lights each Nov. 28th provides the starting signal for the Christmas holidays. With all these lights Madrid looks like a princess, splendid and full of jewellery. Once again, worldwide famous designers and architects are responsible for adorning the city. Oscar Mariné has been chosen to light the famous Gran Vía Street, based on peace and tranquility. Teresa Sapey and Delfín both make their debut this year with original proposals such as eyes or simple beautiful lines. On the other hand, Juan Duyos, Agatha Ruiz de la Prada, Elio Berhanyer, Amaya Arzuaga or Francis Montesinos repeat for the second consecutive year. In addition to street lighting, there will be up to 25 giant Christmas trees dotted throughout the city; they also have been designed by design gurus such as Devota & Lomba.

Once again, the City Council has set up "the Christmas bus", a bus that travels throughout the main streets of Madrid to show the Christmas lights and decorations of the city. The ticket costs one euro for adults and free for children under the age of seven. This special line will circulate between December 6th and January 6th, from 18:00 to 22:00 hours among the Colón square, the Cibeles fountain, the Gran Vía street, the Oriente Square, the Mayor's street, the Puerta del Sol and the Neptuno fountain.

For the second consecutive year, the Colon Square will host the "City with Kids". Every type of workshop imaginable is organized here, from story telling to games for the very young. In addition, King Esplanade will host an ice rink of 800m2, where both grown ups and little people will have fun together.

The next December 23rd, the City Council will celebrate Christmas time with the Madrileños and the tourists with fireworks and a light show on the façade of the Cibeles Palace.

One of the great innovations this Christmas is the exhibition of ice sculptures. More than 60 international artists have created ice monuments in order to reproduce famous Madrid monuments and places such as the Puerta de Alcala or the Santiago Bernabéu stadium which is home to Real Madrid football club.

There will be also 25 nativity scenes spread throughout the city, with the star attraction to be held at the town hall (designed by the sculptor José Luis Mayo), which debuts with a new location: the Cibeles Palace.

As usual, thousands of Spaniards will say good bye to the 2008 year eating 12 grapes when the clock strikes 12 in the Puerta del Sol. Finally, on January 5th 2009 the traditional Parade of the Three Kings will take place.

Christmas time in Madrid is very special! If you want to spend these beautiful days in the Spanish capital, rent Madrid Apartments and enjoy of the best Christmas in your life.

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