This is the third contribution to the ‘My Madrid‘ section, where I invite people with ‘inside information’ on Madrid to write about what they like about the city. Juan Manuel Sampere was born in Madrid almost 50 years ago and has always lived in this ‘vibrant and changing city.’ His life has been devoted to the teaching of Spanish as a Foreign Language at the Estudio Sampere, founded by his parents in 1956. So passionate is he about his school that he claims one of his main hobbies to being the Estudio Sampere because ‘fostering understanding and communication between different people is a very rewarding activity.’ He also enjoys hiking every week in the Guadarrama mountains, 60 kms from Madrid. Here are some of the things that Juan Manuel likes about Madrid:
Favourite Cafe/Bar: Café Central for some jazz, some drinks, and a cool atmosphere. Incidentally, my favourite musician, for many years is Miles Davis, who has fallen in love with Madrid.
Favourite Dish: fresh fish and seafood – you can find the best fresh seafood in Madrid even though the ocean is 500 kms away!
Favourite Restaurant: La Trainera, ten minutes from the Sampere school, where the sole fish is just incredible!
Favourite Shop: Like many Madrileños, is El Corte Ingles, where you find everything in few minutes.
Favourite Building: Not really a building but the Retiro Park and its many statues and interesing sculptures.
Favourite Season: Without doubt it has to be Fall. September to November can be delicious in Madrid.
Favourite Barrio:where the Estudio Sampere Language School is located: Barrio de Salamanca.
Favourite Day Trip from Madrid: Segovia, a medieval city, just 100 kms from Madrid. Toledo is very nice too, but I prefer Segovia.
A Perfect ‘Night Out’ would be… dinner at the Trainera, some jazz at the Cafe Central, and a taxi back home.
Favourite Walk: Around "Madrid de los Austrias" trying to imagine how it was in the 16th century.
Juan Manuel is also the first person to advertise on this blog (see banner on the left)!