Wednesday, 23 July 2014

Shopping in Madrid

A cultural feast, a foodies’ paradise and a city where life is enjoyed to its full, Madrid will always work its magical charms on you. Whatever the reason for a break in this intoxicating place, it would be a sin not to punctuate your trip with some retail therapy. After all this is the country that has given us Zara and Mango.

Salamanca district.Calle Serrano
© José Barea
Courtesy of Courtesy of Madrid Destino Cultura, Turismo y Negocio S.A.

The Spaniards are conscious of their appearance and would never dream of leaving home without looking well-groomed, so you would expect to find exquisite shops in Madrid and you won’t be disappointed. True, there are a lot of ubiquitous international brands that pepper the streets here, but walking down the elegant boulevards turns shopping into a most pleasurable and exciting event.

It is not hard to see why Spain is fast setting the bar in the style stakes. Queen Letizia, has polish and panache. Her fashion credentials have won praise from the world’s media and she is already having a positive effect on the country’s fashion. Zara has changed the way many women around the globe dress. 

The chicest shopping district has to be the Salamanca district. The Calle Serrano and the surrounding streets primarily José Ortega y Gasset and Jorge Juan are littered with designer labels as well as a few high street regulars.  

Gran Via
© José Barea
Courtesy of Courtesy of Madrid Destino Cultura, Turismo y Negocio S.A.

Check out Uterqűe, Zara’s more sophisticated sister. Prices are slightly higher as is the quality, but it is still tremendous value for its elegant numbers. It is a great haunt for bags and accessories.

Loewe is a Spanish luxury label renowned for its leather and a favourite with elegant Spaniards. It now belongs to the LMVH group and has recently had a makeover under the creative directorship of the highly-acclaimed British designer, Jonathan Anderson, aka J.W. Anderson.

Another popular brand is Adolfo Dominguez which is a good place to look for wardrobe staples. Other names to check out are Josep Font and Agatha Ruiz de la Prada.

At the department store, El Corte Inglés, in Salamanca, you can discover other  Spanish designers. You should also mooch around its international sections as they often have a few different pieces that you won’t find at home.

If you need to refuel you will discover lots of lovely cafés where you can sit among the Madrileños and watch the world go by.

The Gran Vía, recently turned 100, is another of Madrid’s upscale shopping streets where national and international brands co-exist. 

Taking a stroll along this lovely boulevard studded with ornate buildings is invigorating. Also around here there are plenty of interesting shops to discover. It is so refreshing to see so many wonderful individual boutiques. 

Pop into Oysho (owned by Zara’s parent company, Inditex), which specialises in lingerie, for some great finds. 

Shopping in Madrid is a rewarding adventure for the style conscious. Have your credit card at the ready!

By Daralyn Danns

Getting there

British Airways operates up to three flights per day from London City to Madrid in addition to services from Heathrow with connections also available from across the UK and Ireland. More information about British Airways services can be found at

I always have a great flight with BA. The cabin crew always go that extra mile to ensure that you have the best possible experience 

I stayed at the Hotel Auditorium, a member of Great Hotels of the World Luxury Collection. A great spot, if you are looking for a hotel near the airport. For more information or to book visit or call 020 7380 3658

For more information on Madrid visit and