Do you know what they say in Spain? The sap rises in the spring! This season begins around 21st March and ends on 21st June, during which the temperatures become milder, flowers start to bloom and the terraces of bars fill up with people eager to leave the winter behind and enjoy the extra hours of sunshine. We will tell you about some perfect activities for this season. Get your camera ready to capture countryside with the most impressive cherry and almond trees in our country, beautiful waterfalls in the National Parks and balconies decorated with flowers, such as geraniums. And you won’t need to take a coat.
As for popular spring festivities, there is Easter week, and then the April Fair in Seville and the Festival of the Courtyards in Cordoba, where we can enjoy a walking route around beautiful courtyards decorated with lots of pots full of geraniums, carnations and jasmines. And on the subject of flowers, in June we have the Corpus Christi, and in towns like San Cristóbal de La Laguna, Sitges and Ponteareas the streets are adorned with enormous carpets made out of petals.
Highlights of the season in Spain
Photograph spectacular blossoms
Have you ever experienced what it means to have a million and a half cherry trees in blossom around you? This “landscaping wonder”, which turns everything white, takes place in the Jerte Valley (Extremadura) in March or April depending on the weather and it is worth seeing at least one in your life.
Do you want more blossoms, so that you can plan a journey? During these months, over 50,000 cherry trees also “wake up” in the Las Caderechas Valley in Burgos and in the Mágina mountain range in Jaén. For its part, the Riojan town of Nalda celebrates the Fiesta del Ciruelo en Flor (Plum Blossom Festival) and visitors come to the countryside around Cieza (in the Region of Murcia) to see the fruit trees in bloom.
At the end of April, shift your focus to Asturias and its famous Cider Region if you want to see the apple trees flowering. Between May and June, the Northern Gredos (Ávila) becomes the World Capital for Spanish Broom in Bloom, which colour the landscape yellow. And now jumping forward to the summer, the Lavender Festival in Brihuega (Guadalajara), which takes place in July, is becoming increasingly famous. This is when the town’s fields turn purple, which no instagramers can resist.
Take part in Easter Week, Sant Jordi or the April Fair
Beyond flowers, these three are excellent festivals to enjoy during this season. Easter Week (between March and April) is religious in nature; the processions organised have centuries of tradition and the outpouring of emotion will be sure to surprise you.
Barcelona’s quintessential festival, Sant Jordi, takes place on 23rd April and tradition stipulates that gifts of books and roses be given.
Between April and May, it is Seville’s turn with its April Fair when its site and stands are full of people dancing “sevillanas” and enjoying themselves.
Experience the most colourful festivities
Flowers are also the guests of honour at some of the most colourful festivals in Spain. Perhaps the best known is the Courtyards Festival in Cordoba held in May (declared as Intangible Cultural Heritage by UNESCO), when you will be able to stroll around the city’s most beautiful courtyards, which compete to have the most eye-catching decorations with flowerpots containing geraniums, carnations and jasmine. Also in May, Girona celebrates the Temps de Flors (time of flowers) and the patios, monuments and corners of the city fill up with plants and flower boxes.
And on the subject of flowers, in June we have the Corpus Christi, in places, such as Toledo, San Cristóbal de La Laguna (Tenerife), Sitges (Barcelona) and Ponteareas (Pontevedra) whereby the streets are adorned with enormous carpets made out of petals.
Visit a city: the time for terraces and urban gardens
Enjoy the fact that the high summer temperatures have not yet arrived and delight in strolling around Spanish cities in spring. Dust off your sunglasses and try the most innovative tapas on the terraces on the hotels’ rooftops or in the renovated gastro markets.
Another activity that is perfect for spring is exploring the famous urban parks, such as the Buen Retiro Park in Madrid or Park Güell in Barcelona or botanical gardens, such as those in Marimurtra (in Blanes, Girona), with impressive sea views and considered to be one of the best botanical gardens in all of Europe.
INDUSTRY FLASH NEWS
Climb aboard a tourist train
Spain’s most famous tourist trains run between the months of April and May. There is a multitude to choose from: the Transcantábrico around northern Spain, the Al Andalus around Andalusia, the Tren dels llacs around the lakes in the Pyrenees (in Lleida), the train devoted to the writer Cervantes, which runs from Madrid to Alcalá de Henares. Most of them are vintage railways and there are examples of veritable palaces on rails, such as the Transcantábrico Gran Lujo. Travelling Spain in such a different way is a real experience.
First steps for the European health passport
In three months, a digital certificate containing vaccination data and covid testing could be ready after the Member States of the European Union have reached an agreement. However, there are still obstacles to overcome at the legal and opposition level of some countries. The solution for lifting barriers to travel could be closer. Following the last video conference of European Union presidents from the 27 Member States, a principle of agreement was reached to initiate work culminating in a digital certificate including vaccination data, whether the carrier has antibodies or the results of the latest covid tests. The closest thing to a European health passport, although some people are reluctant to call it by that name because of the legal implications it may entail.
Madrid Convention Bureau renews its commitment to promotion and face-to-face events
The newly held annual assembly of the Madrid Convention Bureau (MCB) has served to express a strong commitment to in person. Sustainability and legacy of events, attendance at promotional meetings, training and networking actions for partners and development of new tools, will be MCB's main lines of action this year.
During the assembly, held at the multispace Teatro Goya, Madrid Convention Bureau reminded its partners of two of the strategic pillars that will guide their performances this 2021. The first is sustainability at events, not only from an ecological and environmental point of view, but also socially. The other is the legacy, which allows to leave a positive mark on the city beyond the celebration of the meeting.
The Innside by Meliá brand arrives in Madrid
Meliá will launch its lifestyle brand in the heart of Gran Vía de Madrid with a hotel resulting from the renovation of the old TRYP Cibeles that will have a rooftop of 700 square meters and that aspires to become the new fashion space of the city.
The new INNSiDE by Meliá Madrid Gran Vía will open its doors, a few meters from the Malasaña district, in early spring. The enclave chosen for the landing of the lifestyle brand of Meliá is a historic building built in the height of the 1920s by Antonio Palacios Ramilo that for years housed TRYP Cibeles. INNSiDE By Meliá Madrid Gran Vía will have 117 rooms and spaces in which urban artists have intervened, thanks to the collaboration with Madrid Street Art Project, an independent entity dedicated to supporting art and local urban artists bringing their proposals closer to all audiences.
Ritz Madrid, reopens this spring
The Ritz hotel in Madrid last opened on April 15 after three years in construction. The iconic hotel is run by the Asian East Mandarin chain, which also owns the property. Mandarin Oriental and the Saudi fund Olayan Group took over the hotel in 2015 to close it three years later to undertake a profound reform, valued at 100 million euros. Located in the 'Art Triangle' of the capital, close to its financial and commercial heart, the new Mandarin Oriental Ritz Madrid will present its new face after the most intense reform of its 110 years of history.
The hotel company's goal was to open the Ritz at the end of 2019, but a collapse during the works forced it to delay to opening in February 2020. Finally, the pandemic forced the release of the new Mandarin network Ritz one year. The 153 rooms and suites combine a classic and renovated style, while the Royal Suite and Presidential Suite offer views of the Prado Museum. In the turrets on the top floor, there are two new Mandarin Suites with private balconies and views of the Prado Museum and Plaza de la Lealtad.
In addition, the event rooms, with their large windows overlooking the Prado Museum, have been restored and designed to ensure that the hotel is again the place chosen for weddings, private dinners and parties.
ART: Madrid and more
The Thyssen-Bornemisza National Museum is presenting the first retrospective in Spain on Georgia O’Keeffe, which will be on display from 20 April to 8 August. Through a selection of approximately 80 works, visitors will enter the pictorial universe of this artist who is considered to be one of the leading representatives of 20th century North American art.
Georgia O’Keeffe (Wisconsin, United States, 1887- 1986, New Mexico, United States) was one of the foremost practitioners of the modern art that emerged in the United States in connection with the photographer and gallery owner, Alfred Stieglitz. Throughout her life, she created a personal style that public and critics identified as the expression of the new native American art.
The exhibition offers a complete review of O’Keeffe’s career, ranging from the works produced between 1910 and 1920 that made her a pioneer of abstraction, to her celebrated flower paintings and views of New York, which led to her recognition as one of the key figures in modern American art, and culminating with her paintings of New Mexico that arose from her fascination with the landscape and cultural mix of this remote region.
With the collaboration of the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum in Santa Fe, New Mexico, the exhibition is a project organised by the Thyssen-Bornemisza National Museum, the Centre Pompidou in Paris, and the Beyeler Foundation in Basel, along with European institutions that it will visit after Madrid.
When: from 20 April to 8 August 2021
Where: Thyssen Bornemisza Museum, Madrid
Mythological Passions: Tiziano, Veronese, Allori, Rubens, Ribera, Poussin, Van Dyck, Velázquez
The Prado Museum brings together the six mythological paintings based on classical poetry painted by Titian for King Philip II between 1551 and 1562 for the first time since the 16th century from 2 March to 4 July 2021.
Known as the “poesies”, they are the paintings: Danae, Venus and Adonis, Perseus and Andromeda, Diana and Actaeon, Diana and Callisto and Rape of Europa. All of the canvases are inspired by the amatory question and were commissioned for the King’s private quarters. To recreate them, Titian took in compositions such as Metamorphoses by Ovidio and Jupiter’s Loves by Correggio. Due to their gradual development, it took several years for them to be united and it is thought that they were hung in the Aranjuez Palace.
Born in Pieve di Cadore (Italy) in 1477, Titian was an Italian Renaissance painter who is considered to be one of the most important members of the Venetian school. His legacy is characterised by the use of vivid and luminous colours and a loose brushstroke. He handled asymmetrical compositions like nobody without any defined hierarchy and was also extremely versatile in approaching diverse styles: portraits, landscapes, altarpieces, historical paintings, biblical scenes, allegories, mythology, naturalism…
His work led him to be appointed the official painter of the Republic of Venice and later the “official painter” of the Spanish crown. The Catholic Church also commissioned him to expand its ideology through iconography, whereby he was one of the strongholds of what was known as the Counter-reform. Titian painted until the end of his life, dying as a result of the Black Plague in Venice in 1576. Some of his most important works are Carlos V on Horseback at Mühlberg, Assumption of the Virgin, Venus of Urbino or Allegory of Prudence.
This exhibition has been possible thanks to the collaboration of the National Gallery in London, the National Galleries of Scotland in Edinburgh and the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston.
When: until 4th July 2021
Where: Prado Museum, Madrid
Ingenuity at the service of power. The Leonardo da Vinci Codes in the Habsburgs Court
The Temporary Exhibition Hall at the San Fernando Royal Academy of Fine Arts is hosting an exhibition from 16 February to 16 May that vindicates the splendour of science and engineering in the Madrid court of Philip II and Philip III.
The exhibition has been organised by the General Directorate for Cultural Heritage of Community of Madrid’s Department of Culture and Tourism, in collaboration with the Academy, the Spanish National Library and National Heritage. The civil engineering section is curated by Daniel Crespo Delgado, professor at the Madrid Complutense University and researcher at the Juanelo Turriano Foundation.
It is a journey through the past to discover the technology and ingenuity of Habsburg Madrid, a city that was also at the centre of scientific and technical knowledge at that time. It reviews the ambitious hydraulic architecture and civil engineering projects that were carried out by leading experts in those years.
Finally, the most important agreements on such issues will be on display. They include much of Leonardo da Vinci’s manuscript. Therefore, the driving threads of the codes of this universal genius bring to the fore a series of artists and engineers whose constructions and careers are closely related to da Vinci.
When: until May 16 2021
Where: Real Academia de Bellas Artes de San Fernando, Madrid
SHOWS: music, theatre, dance, gastronomy, fashion …
The Teatro Real, under the artistic management and production of SO-LA-NA, opens a new season of Flamenco Real, hence consolidating the presence of flamenco in its Dance Hall, with a more extensive and diversified programme. Between 13 November and 29 July (Thursday) there will be 15 shows featuring leading artists from flamenco song and dance, such as Amador Rojas, Alba Heredia and Antonio Canales.
Due to the health safety regulations, the format has been modified, replacing the chairs and tables (flamenco house format) with a semi-circular auditorium and maintaining the safety distance between spectators. After paying tribute to Cristina Hoyos, this third edition is devoted to the dancer and choreographer, Blanca del Rey, muse of Spanish dance over the past 50 years.
The artist responsible for opening Flamenco Real will be the dancer, Miguel Fernández Ribas, better known as "El Yiyo", presenting his show, A Contratiempo, on Friday 13 November. The performance by Antonio Molina “El Choro” with his show, Mi Baile, will be held on 26 November.
On 17 December, Alba Heredia will present Alba&Lando and in January, the dancer, Amador Rojas, will perform a flamenco musical devoted to love and heartbreak under the title of Amar Bailando, accompanied by Joni Jiménez on the guitar and the singer, Inma “La Carbonera”.
The cycle will continue with De Sepia y Oro by the dancers, Andrés Peña and Pilar Ogalla; the artist, Belén López will stage her proposal, Flamenco; and on 4 March, Flamenco de Raíz will be presented, a show devised by Iván Vargas with his choreographies and those of the maestros, Manolete and Juan Andrés Maya.
The programme is rounded off with performances by Yolanda Osuna, Juan Manuel Moneo and María José Franco, María Moreno, Antonio Canales, Mercedes de Córdoba, Ángel Muñoz and Macarena Ramírez. Sergio de Lope will be responsible for closing the cycle on 29 July with his Ser de Luz project, a plea for the musical memory of the villages.
When: until July 29th 2021
Where: Teatro Real, Madrid
TRADE SHOWS & CONGRESSES
Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Madrid (April Edition)
Twice a year, Madrid becomes a giant runway, showing the most coveted creations of avant-garde couturiers from around the world, both well-established designers and rising stars. In February, the autumn/winter collections are introduced for 2021/2022.
Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Madrid (MBFWM), a big fashion event in Spain, is introducing its 71th edition, coming with important news and newcomers, aimed at strengthening its position as the leading platform for the Spanish fashion industry and one of the leading events at the international level.
MBFWM is a major event in the global fashion industry: the perfect showcase for those who want their brands to be associated to fashion and new trends.
This year, MBFWM will offer interesting out-of-programme activities, plus six workshops on the creations of some of the greatest Spanish designers, affirming the country’s leadership in global fashion and creative diversity.
As in past editions, the final day will be dedicated to emerging designers by Samsung EGO, showing what’s going on in the renewal of Spanish fashion.
MBFWM will have leading brands as sponsors: Mercedes-Benz, L’Oréal Paris, Inditex, and many other big players.
When: From 8 to 11 April 2021
Where: IFEMA, Madrid
Madrid Fusion 2021
The latest Edition of the Madrid Fusion International Summit turns Madrid into the capital of the gastronomy world for three days at IFEMA - Feria de Madrid (Pavilion 14). The participation of international speakers from all over the world, as well as famous national and foreign chefs, certifies, year after year, that this event enjoys excellent health. In 2021, it has been postponed from its usual dates in mid-January to 31 May - 2 June (if the health situation allows it).
For the first time in the history of the event, speakers will be able to choose between two options: attending IFEMA in person or following the speeches via a powerful digital platform. This year, the event is committed to a live experience that includes numerous activities in which to participate and other spaces for training, along with strict healthcare regulations due to Covid-19.
Most of the presentations will revolve around a central theme, circular gastronomy, that is, cuisine that has recently been harvested and cooked, the short product cycle and making the most of resources.
Madrid Fusión 2021 will have a programme that includes extensive international presence and chefs who have confirmed their participation include Davide Caranchini (Materia, Italy), one of the most up-and-coming Italian chefs trained by Gordon Ramsay, Michel Roux or René Redzepi; Flynn McGarry (Gem, USA), a young North American who has triumphed in Manhattan with the Gem restaurant; Joshua Niland (Saint Peter, Australia), one of the triumphs from the 2020 edition; Juan Sebastián Pérez (Quitu Restaurant, Ecuador), who leads the ‘Chef to Farm’ movement in Quito; Juan Luis Martínez and José Luis Saume (Mérito, Lima) who will bring cuisine with a combination of Venezuelan and Peruvian roots.
The list of Spanish chefs looking to make the most of their resources and who will participate as speakers in the first global gastronomy congress includes Xavier Pellicer (Healthy Kitchen), Ignacio Echapresto (Venta Moncalvillo), Pedro Sánchez (Bagá), Ángel León (Aponiente) or Ricard Camarena (Ricard Camarena Restaurant).
The programme will present Chefs Relief Training, a training programme for chefs who lead the World Central Kitchen (WCK). An NGO led by the chef, José Andrés, along with Javier García to help in crises or disasters caused by climate change.
It is a culinary meeting place that has been taking place every January since 2002 in the Municipal Congress Center where each year a different country is invited to be the special gastronomic guest of honor.
The event is divided into two Congresses that will deal with the possible future course of haute cuisine: environment, energy efficiency, human relations, applied psychology, social integration, uberisation, new technologies, and recycling. Chefs from all over the world will participate in technical demonstrations, training workshops, competitions, auctions and prizes.
Madrid Fusión initiative has been awarded numerous prizes like the Prize for Social and Cultural Work Related to Gastronomy awarded by the Dionisio Duque Foundation in 2008; the 3rd Madrid Prize for Gastronomy awarded by Madrid’s Academy for Gastronomy in 2007 and the Foods of Spain Prize, Best Promotional Action in any Other Country of the World awarded by the Ministry of Agriculture, Fishing and Food in 2015.
When: from 31 May to 2 June 2021
Where: IFEMA, Madrid
SPORTS OF THE SEASON!!!
Mutua Madrid Open 2021
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the 2020 edition was cancelled. The next edition of the Mutua Madrid Open will be held from 30 April to 9 May 2021 at Caja Mágica.
The world’s best tennis players will meet at Caja Mágica for the 12th edition of the Mutua Madrid Open. The tournament is one of the world's elite tennis competitions, part of the ATP Masters men's circuit and the WTA Premier Mandatory women's competition. It is only behind the Grand Slams in terms of importance. It is also one of the few Opens in the world where the men's and women's competitions are held simultaneously.
Since 2009, the Mutua Madrid Open has been held at La Caja Mágica, designed by Dominique Perrault. An impressive modern tennis complex that is home to three courts with retractable roofs so that matches can be held in the open air or indoor.
The roll-call of winners is testament to the greatness of this trophy: Andre Agassi (2002), Juan Carlos Ferrero (2003), Marat Safin (2004), Rafael Nadal (2005, 2010, 2013, 2014 and 2017), Roger Federer (2006, 2009 and 2012), David Nalbandian (2007), Andy Murray (2008 and 2015), Novak Djokovic (2011, 2016 and 2019) and Alexander Zverev (2018) for the men's competition. Dinara Safina (2009), Aravane Rezaï (2010), Petra Kvitová (2011, 2015 and 2018), Serena Williams (2012 and 2013), Maria Sharapova (2014), Simona Halep (2016 and 2017) and Kiki Bertens (2019) in the women's competition.
When: From 30 April to 9 May 2021
Where: Madrid Caja Mágica, Madrid
Horse Racing: 2021 Season
In addition to being an architectural gem and a prime example of Madrid Rationalism, La Zarzuela Racecourse is an iconic venue for sporting leisure in Madrid. The thrilling horse races, held every Sunday morning in spring and autumn and at night in summer, take place in an amazing atmosphere. A host of parallel activities are held every day, from children’s activities to themed events like street markets and special parties, as well as live music and a food and drink area with food trucks and gastro corners.
The racecourse will host horse races every Sunday (Saturdays in June and Thursdays and Saturdays in July and August).All races in January and February, the night races in July and August, and handicap races in June will be held on the fiber track. All other races will be run on grass.
The autumn season will kick off on 12 September. Races will be held every Sunday till 28 November, including the Memorial Duque de Toledo on 17 October. On 30 December there will be a special Christmas day of racing.
When: From 7 March to 28 November 2021
Where: La Zarzuela Racecourse, Madrid
**D&P is at your disposal to provide an attractive program together with the attendance to the above mentioned events and activities for your guests and peers, just let us know your target and requirements and we will design a proposal that matches your expectations and budget !!!