Curiosities

Top 11 Rooftops of Madrid

The average building height in downtown Madrid (5-6 stories) may not be as high as in Chicago (30-40 stories) but it is exactly for that reason than any building with more than 4 stories often hide a potentially interesting spot on its top floor. Madrid is full of, sometimes unknown, rooftops so hopefully you’ll discover some you didn’t know before.

Last week I published 5 Skyline Photographs of Madrid and this post comprises most of the locations from which I took the pictures.
What do I mean by best rooftops? I mean the ones that combine the best architectural value by its building and context with the ones that offer the best views (in addition to amazing cocktails and service)*. If you only have a chance to visit limited places in the capital, you would be able to see Madrid completely (N-S and E-W) with this selection. Nevertheless, if you have a little bit of spare time, check out all the other interesting points close to these rooftops in this map.

Which one has the best views in your opinion?
If you had to choose the best one overall, which one would it be?

*See end for other amazing rooftops.


Virginia Duran Blog- Best  Rooftops of Madrid- Circulo de Bellas Artes - Tartan Roof 1

Virginia Duran Blog- Best  Rooftops of Madrid- Circulo de Bellas Artes - Tartan Roof Azotea

Virginia Duran Blog- Best  Rooftops of Madrid- Circulo de Bellas Artes - Tartan Roof

Virginia Duran Blog- Best  Rooftops of Madrid- Circulo de Bellas Artes - Tartan Roof Skyline
Name
: “Tartan Roof”- Círculo de Bellas Artes
Location: Calle de Alcalá, 42 (7th Floor)
Best Views: Metropolis building, Plaza de la Cibeles, City Hall
Best Drink: Red Wine (6€)
Web: http://www.azoteadelcirculo.com/
Brief Description: In my opinion it is the best one of Madrid, it has amazing skyline views. The access is 3€ and includes the inner stair exposition (always interesting). The restaurant is very recent and the food is good. Bring your sketch book here.


Virginia Duran Blog- Best Rooftops of Madrid- Urban Hotel Azotea

Virginia Duran Blog- Best  Rooftops of Madrid- Urban Hotel

Virginia Duran Blog- Best Rooftops of Madrid- Urban Hotel Skyline

Virginia Duran Blog- Best  Rooftops of Madrid- Urban Hotel Interior
Name:
La Terraza del Urban- Urban Hotel
Location: Carrera de San Jerónimo, 34 (7th Floor)
Best Views: San Jerónimo church, Congreso de los Diputados
Best Drink: Priscilla (11€) non alcoholic, Caipirinha (13,50€)
Web: http://www.hotelurban.com/
Brief Description: One of the best rooftop’s of Madrid. Chic and quiet. Views are nice but the building is the best part. Outstanding service. There is a swimming pool which opens during the day.


Virginia Duran Blog- Best  Rooftops of Madrid- ME hotel 1

Virginia Duran Blog- Best  Rooftops of Madrid- ME hotel 2

Virginia Duran Blog- Best  Rooftops of Madrid- ME hotel 3

Virginia Duran Blog- Best  Rooftops of Madrid- ME hotel
Name
: The Penthouse- ME Hotel
Location: Plaza de Santa Ana, 14 (7th Floor)
Best Views: Plaza de Santa Ana, Retiro Park, Sol
Best Drink: ME Mojito (15€)
Web: https://es.melia.com/hoteles/espana/madrid/me-madrid-reina-victoria/index.html
Brief Description: Access is through the 1st floor elevator located on the right side of the building. It has just been restored and it now offers higher and more private spots. The only disadvante is that you’ll have to go yourself to get the drinks to the bar and then bring them to the terrace, not fun given the menu prices.


Virginia Duran Blog- Best  Rooftops of Madrid- Hotel Silken Puerta de America- Interior

Virginia Duran Blog- Best  Rooftops of Madrid- Hotel Silken Puerta de America Views

Virginia Duran Blog- Best  Rooftops of Madrid- Hotel Silken Puerta de America

Virginia Duran Blog- Best  Rooftops of Madrid- Hotel Silken Puerta de America Up
Name
: Skynight- Hotel Silken Puerta de América
Location: Avenida de América, 41 (13th Floor)
Best Views: Panorama of Southern Madrid, Torres Blancas
Best Drink: Caipiroska (12€)
Web: http://www.fusepeople.com/espacio.html
Brief Description: Amazing panoramic views of Madrid’s skyline. The bar is designed by Jean Nouvel which should be a reason itself for coming here. This is one of my favourites. Free parking from 21.00-1.00.


Virginia Duran Blog- Best Rooftops of Madrid- Room Mate Oscar Hotel -1

Virginia Duran Blog- Best Rooftops of Madrid- Room Mate Oscar Hotel -2

Virginia Duran Blog- Best Rooftops of Madrid- Room Mate Oscar Hotel -3

Virginia Duran Blog- Best Rooftops of Madrid- Room Mate Oscar Hotel -4
Name
: laterrazadeoscar- Room Mate Óscar
Location: Plaza Vázquez de Mella 12 (8th Floor)
Best Views: 360º of Madrid’s skyline
Best Drink: Coronita 7€
Web: http://oscar.room-matehotels.com/
Brief Description: The best views of Madrid, definitely worth a visit. However, the atmosphere may not be so good. People can be very loud. Swimming pool service (40€/day 20€/ half day) includes a towel, tequila and Cava drink.


Virginia Duran Blog- Best  Rooftops of Madrid- Hotel Ada by Narciso Bermejo Sunset Circulo Bellas Artes

Virginia Duran Blog- Best  Rooftops of Madrid- Hotel Ada by Narciso Bermejo

Virginia Duran Blog- Best  Rooftops of Madrid- Hotel Ada by Narciso Bermejo Sunset

Virginia Duran Blog- Best  Rooftops of Madrid- Hotel Ada by Narciso Bermejo North
Name
: La Terraza del Ada – Hotel ADA Palace
Location: Calle Gran Vía, 2 (7th Floor)
Best Views: Círculo de Bellas Artes, Plaza Cibeles, Town Hall of Madrid, Metropolis Building
Best Drink: Apple Vodka Tonic (15€) Ada Cocktail (18€)
Web: http://www.hoteladapalace-madrid.com/es/fotos-hotel-ada-palace.html
Brief Description: This is the best place to enjoy Madrid’s sunset. While having one of the most impressive views (the Metropolis Building is just in front), the brand new cocktail selection makes it a completely delightful experience. You shouldn’t miss this spot.


Virginia Duran Blog- Best  Rooftops of Madrid- Gourmet Experience- El Corte Ingles

Virginia Duran Blog- Best  Rooftops of Madrid- Gourmet Experience B

Virginia Duran Blog- Best  Rooftops of Madrid- Gourmet Experience 3

Virginia Duran Blog- Best  Rooftops of Madrid- Gourmet Experience-2
Name
: Gourmet Experience – El Corte Inglés
Location: Plaza de Callao (9th Floor)
Best Views: Capitol Building, Gran Via
Best Drink: Lemon Iced Tea (3,5€)
Web: http://aptcsupermercado.elcorteingles.es/gourmet-experience
Brief Description: Inside a shopping mall and organized like a market (buy an ice cream/drinks and then bring them outside) you may think it doesn’t look so good, right? Wrong. It is from here where you’ll get the best shots of the über famous Capitol Building and Gran Via street. Sunsets from this rooftop are among the best ones of Madrid. And the good thing is that it opens all year-long.


Virginia Duran Blog- Best  Rooftops of Madrid- Gaudeaumus- Escuelas Pias- UNED

Virginia Duran Blog- Best  Rooftops of Madrid- Gaudeaumus- Escuelas Pias- UNED Interior

Virginia Duran Blog- Best  Rooftops of Madrid- Gaudeaumus- Escuelas Pias- UNED Cupula
Name
: Gaudeamus Café- Edificio Escuelas Pias (UNED)
Location: Calle Tribulete, 14 (4th Floor)
Best Views: Capitol Building, Gran Via
Best Drink: Mojito (7,5€)
Web: http://www.gaucafe.com/#!gaucafe/c1sln
Brief Description: Located on one of the most relevant and historic places of Madrid: Las Escuelas Pias. Its reknown architect, Linazasoro, was in charge of restoring this monastery built in 1729 and turning it into a library in 2004. In this case you shouldn’t face your chair towards the skyline, but towards the cupola. Amazing architecture, make sure you visit the inside of the building.


Virginia Duran Blog- Best  Rooftops of Madrid- Hotel de las Letras

Virginia Duran Blog- Best  Rooftops of Madrid- Hotel de las Letras Azotea

Virginia Duran Blog- Best  Rooftops of Madrid- Hotel de las Letras Skyline

Virginia Duran Blog- Best  Rooftops of Madrid- Hotel de las Letras Patio
Name
: Hotel de las Letras
Location: Calle Gran Vía, 11 (7th Floor)
Best Views: Gran Via Street
Best Drink: Natural Juices 4,50€, Rum 14€
Web: http://www.hoteldelasletras.com/gastronomia/atico-de-las-letras
Brief Description: Nice views and amazing atmosphere. It is now very famous and it attracts a lot of tourists. Be patient, it is small and it may take a while to sit down. At lunch is less crowded than at dinner. If you want to conquer the heart of your date, bring him/her here.


Virginia Duran Blog- Best  Rooftops of Madrid- Terraza Cibeles Palacio

Virginia Duran Blog- Best  Rooftops of Madrid- Terraza Cibeles -

Virginia Duran Blog- Best  Rooftops of Madrid- Terraza Cibeles 2

Virginia Duran Blog- Best  Rooftops of Madrid- Terraza Cibeles Skyline
Name
: Terraza Cibeles
Location: Plaza de Cibeles, 1 (6th Floor)
Best Views: Gran Via Street, Plaza Cibeles
Best Drink: Desperados 6€, Cibeles Colección 12€
Web: http://www.adolfo-palaciodecibeles.com/terraza.html
Brief Description: Located on the Town Hall of Madrid. The views from the rooftop (access 2€) are spectacular but it closes al 8.00 p.m. If you want to get amazing night shots this terrace is the alternative, but its 2 stories beneath the regular rooftop.


Virginia Duran Blog- Best  Rooftops of Madrid- Mercado de Moncloa 2

Virginia Duran Blog- Best  Rooftops of Madrid- Mercado de Moncloa
Name
: Terraza Mercado de Moncloa- Hotel Exe
Location: Calle Arcipreste Hita, 10 (9th Floor)
Best Views: Sierra de Guadarrama, El Escorial and West Madrid
Best Drink: Heineken 6€
Web: http://www.hotelexemoncloa.com/
Brief Description: This rooftop is in conjunction to “Mercado de Moncloa” located on the 1st floor of the Exe Hotel. It is like a small version of “Mercado de San Miguel” Market. It is part of the “Heineken Afterwork” events, so you know you’ll have fun. Young atmosphere. Amazing sunsets.


Note: The other amazing rooftops were: Hotel Vincci Via 66Hotel Santo Domingo, Hotel Vinci Capitol, El mirador del Thyssen, Roof Garden (Hotel Emperador), La casa de Granada, La terraza del Casino, The Picnic Experience (CC ABC Serrano) and El Viajero.


Check these and other amazing buildings of Madrid on the map below or download my Free Architecture Guide of Madrid.

97 thoughts on “Top 11 Rooftops of Madrid

  1. You give us the most bewitching view of Madrid and its ambience. And I’m floored by the painstaking detail you provide in your post. Thank you – it’s excellent!

    Take care!

    Like

    • Thanks for stopping by MJ! It took me a while to check all these places but I have to admit it was a lot of fun. I discovered great places with this post. If you ever travel to Madrid you know where to get the info🙂
      -Virginia

      Like

      • Oh, you can be sure you will be my first port of call.🙂

        You must also share with your readers your own architectural projects. I for one would love to know about them.

        Like

      • I am doing a dance center in Chicago by the riverwalk as a final degree thesis, I think I will post my process at some point. Right now I only have impossible sketches and a huge Chicago model. Thanks for encouraging me to do so🙂

        Like

      • Virginia, thank you for a terrific blog; interesting, fun, different. I have been living in Madrid for over 40 yrs. and admit to only knowing 2 of the rooftops. This was a great eyeopener from a super researcher! BTW if you return to Madrid, you know where you can get even more info:)

        Like

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  9. This is absolutely fascinating. I really love the innovative use of roof space. I think my favourite is probably the Gaudeamus Café- because it combines the old and new and combines two of my favourite places, libraries and monasteries.

    Like

    • I had no idea that some of these places existed and it’s been a wonderful research, especially the one of Gaudeamus Café. Maybe it wasn’t so much about the views but about being in a really nice and full of history environment. You’ll have to return to Spain and visit in person all these rooftops🙂

      Like

    • He was my professor two years ago and I see him around university often. He was obsessed with restoration projects and that wasn’t easy at all. When I studied in Rome last semester he was invited as a speaker and everyone loved him very much (Italy is all about restoration too). Overall he is an amazing person, I would ask him about his thoughts on cities such as Christchurch and will get back to you🙂

      Like

      • Gosh really. Because all around our city we have these facades and broken pieces and today we are told another really beautiful building is going to be demolished. When I see what he has done/restored, I feel like weeping at what we are losing and have lost. Of course money is a problem here. Sometimes the buildings are not really worth saving but sometimes that little piece of history is worth holding on to. Oh Gaudeamus means “Let us Rejoice” so maybe it is a good name for that cafe.

        Like

      • I am against demolition in general and especially on buildings that are part of a citie’s history. It’s really sad to hear some buildings are just being erased. Money is always the problem but sometimes is exactly the lack of money that makes it difficult to build, leading to restoration processes. So let’s hope the best for Christchurch!

        Like

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  13. Hey V,

    Great post…I love it, thank you. I have visited Madrid 3 times before and have been to only 2 of the ones you have mentioned; Cortes Ingles and Tartan Roof. Tartan is pretty cool with the views and setting.

    I’m taking a local Madrid lady on a date for a drink or 2, and was wondering in your opinion, which rooftop is the best?

    Like

    • Hello J,

      Glad to hear this information was useful to you. In my opinion, Tartan Roof (Circulo de Bellas Artes) is the best, and no matter how many times you return, you’ll always find a different view. On the other hand, the Ada Hotel is amazing too. Not everyone is allowed and that’s why it’s less “touristic” and more exclusive, and it has great views too. The same happens with Hotel Silken Puerta de América, so I’d say those two.

      Hope this helps😉
      ps. if you want to try a new one, I’ve recently visited Hotel Indigo, you may love it too!

      Like

      • Great. I’ll check out Hotel Indigo. Oh I forgot, I was at Skynight- Hotel Silken Puerta de América also.

        I agree with you, out of the 3, Tartan Roof is the best.

        Thanks V!

        Like

  14. Outstanding post, you have pointed out some fantastic points, I as well think this is a very great website. bffbckcedgfd

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  17. Thank you for the sensible critique. Me &amp my neighbor were just preparing to do a little research about this. We got a grab a book from our local library but I think I learned more from this post. I am very glad to see such excellent info being shared freely out there. akddfaegfadd

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  18. Thanks for these great tips! I will be in Madrid next week and was interested in getting a nighttime photo at “Tartan Roof”- Círculo de Bellas Artes. The website says the opening hours are 9-2, but I have seen many night shots here before. Am I missing something? Any help would be appreciated! Thanks!

    Like

    • Max, that’ll be great. El Circulo de Bellas Artes is a must-see spot. Yes, from 9 am (not 21) to 2 am. It’s open during day time too. Depending on which day it can get very packed, so if you want to be there at sunset, be a little earlier😀
      For how long would you be visiting Madrid?

      Like

      • Ok great, thanks! We will be in Madrid for 3 nights, starting this upcoming Saturday. We have a pretty open schedule, but your rooftop guide is very helpful for planning out some nice photography spots. I noticed you have these guides for other cities as well; what a great idea! My wife studied abroad for 6 months in Madrid 8 years ago, and this is her first time back since then. Any other great spots for photography that we shouldn’t miss? Thanks Virginia!

        Like

        • Sounds good! Note that ADA Palace is now closed. But the rest are great photography points. Besides that, I will check this Map, especially the yellow points. Your wife may discover some new spots in it such as the new skyscrapers😉 Let me know if you’re looking for something specific!

          Like

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  20. Thanks so much for this post! I will be sure to use the brilliant info you’ve supplied over the next few weeks to take some of my own shots of Madrid. Many thanks

    Like

      • First, Madrid is my dream city!🙂 Can’t wait to see it. I will take Madrid Card for free entry to many museums, galleries etc. I love to take photos ofc, and I would like to see little streets, places with not so many tourists and of course major things. Also, I’ll go to Toledo one day or half of a day (what do you think, how much time I’ll need). And, please tell me – which places/buildings not to miss to take photo?
        Thanks! ¡Gracias!

        Like

  21. Thank you for this great overview! I just came home from Madrid and your page was very helpful. We tried 4 of your 11 recommendations and I agree with you, the Tartan Roof was the best place.
    Best regards and Muchas gracias, Agnes

    Like

      • Perfect!! The first one will be!😀
        I will be there on the 25th of October, if you feel like we can meet there, no pressure. I will be alone because I will have a connecting flight from São Paulo do Munich😀

        Thank you so much, happy that you are enjoying the pictures on Instagram❤

        Like

        • Awnnn that’s really nice of you!
          I will arrive very early, my plane lands at 5:30, so I guess I will be in the center max at 7 I hope. But you don’t have to meet at this time, really. I don’t want to take your Sunday time, we can meet at lunch if you like, then we can take a walk afterwards. I have to be back at the airport around 3pm max.😀

          Like

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