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Hostal Cristina, Cadaqués
Posted by Ree in Spain on 17/Sep/2006
View from Hostal Cristina When I am at the beach, things that would usually irritate me - communal showers, peeling paint, strange creatures found bedside- take on a certain charm. All I want after a day in the sun is be lulled to sleep by the surf and feel a slight sprinkling of sand between the sheets. And so I like the Hostal Cristina, a simple but adequate hotel by the water's edge in Cadaqués (a small town on Spain's Costa Brava).

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Bazaar in Madrid
Posted by Slavito in Madrid + Places on 04/Sep/2006
Slavito @ BazaarWhen you get tired of all the "typical" Spanish food, when you want small dishes (but... please, no more tapas!), when you want to try something eclectic yet vaguely Spanish-themed, you might want to consider eating at Bazaar on the southern fringes of Madrid's Chueca.

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Bandeja de FaboritI've already talked about my abnormal interest in this very important meal and how those morning calories are hard to come by in Madrid. Well, given that nobody here eats much in the morning, you might as well do as the Madrileños do - that is, eat only un poco. But where?...

Read the rest of: "Why Faborit is my Favorite. Reason #1: Breakfast
Feria del LibroWalking along the Paseo del Prado yesterday, I couldn't help but notice all those kiosks and stands filled with books. Bookish types were swarming around them like insects.

So, I browsed a little bit and even though most of the material on display was clearly junk, I had to remind myself more than once about airline weight restrictions: otherwise, I would have now had in my possession more than a few 2€ encyclopedias and a handful sub-10€ hard-cover editions of literary classics published in the 70's.

I couldn't figure out the exact dates for this event, but it looks like the stalls will be there for at least a few more weeks.

VIPS: Breakfast in Madrid
Posted by Slavito in Madrid + Places on 20/Mar/2006
Breakfast at VIPS in Madrid
Don't get me wrong - I love Spanish food. In fact, I adore it. I can't get enough of all that cocido, jamón serrano, chorizo and tortilla española, so whenever I am in Madrid, I basically eat in advance. Madrid is a city where I can go to a sketchy diner, sit on a bar stool at the counter pretending to be a visiting American, take out a French novel from my pocket... and still get friendly service along with a hearty, delicious meal - all for less than 10 euros!

But that doesn't help me solve the problem I encounter almost every morning. My problem is breakfast...

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Café Gijón
Posted by Slavito in Madrid on 12/Nov/2005
Cafe Gijón (header) To have a coffee in a literary setting that's oozing atmosphere and tradition in Madrid requires almost no effort. Just walk to the Pasillo de Recoletos, look for the address plaque that says "21" and open the door to Café Gijón.

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Madrid: Puerta del Sol: New Year's
¡Feliz Año Nuevo desde Madrid! By the way, this is Madrid's Puerta del Sol on New Year's eve (right around midnight). Did you know that Spaniards eat grapes instead of drinking champagne during the countdown? You're supposed to eat exactly twelve during the last minute of the year - that works out to be one grape every five seconds, if my Bachelor's degree in Mathematics was worth anything at all. If you linger or hesitate then it's bad luck. All the grocery shops around the Puerta del Sol sell seedless grapes (how is that not cheating?), neatly packed by the dozen.
View of the Beach from Hotel Mar de Frente My sister and I arrived at Hotel Mar de Frente (Los Caños De Meca, Costa de la Luz, Andalucía) almost by accident (or, to put it bluntly, by virtue of not being able to back our stick-shift rental coche out of a driveway). All in all, I must say it was a happy accident.

Having left the stubborn car in the care of a friendly parking lot attendant, we inquired about available rooms at the hotel and briefly surveyed the beach below. The results of both inquiries appeared to be satisfactory.... We checked in...

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