Monday 28 February 2011

beautiful places of madrid

For residents of -- and visitors to -- Madrid, a lunch spent gazing out at the Mediterranean will soon be only about 90 minutes away.
A new line on the AVE, Spain's high-speed service, linking the capital with Valencia, will debut on Dec. 19, shaving about two and a half hours off the current length of the trip. Prices for the new train will start at 90 euros, about $120.
The line, which will make stops in the towns of Requena and Cuenca, terminates in Valencia, the seaside city best known for being the birthplace of paella. It also features excellent weather (it averages 300 sunny days a year) and impressive architecture, including the dramatically curved City of Arts and Sciences complex, designed by Santiago Calatrava, a native son.
The new train line, which will reach speeds over 200 miles per hour, will eventually run 20 times a day

Over the last few years, if you saw a Madrileña wearing a pair of fabulous shoes — a pair of genuine ruby slippers like Dorothy’s, say, only a touch more urban, styled as a flat or a d’Orsay pump, with red matte piping along the edge and a slightly more flattering rounded toe — the likely origin of the slippers in question was a bright turquoise shoe box of a shop on Calle Espiritu Santo in the Malasaña neighborhood. There, Cynthia Ioli, an Argentine transplant and former costume designer for theater and opera, is redefining what’s cool on the feet of Madrid’s men and women. The store is designed like a New York studio; not an inch is wasted. Facing the street is a floor-to-ceiling stack of sample colors in leathers, silks, brocades. Each wall bears shoes in ready-to-wear styles

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