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Círculo de Bellas Artes rooftop
Photograph: Grupo Azotea Círculo de Bellas Artes rooftop

The best Madrid terraces open now

With the first Madrid terraces that opened in Phase 1, we recommend some of our favourites that you won't want to miss!

By Gorka Elorrieta and Jan Fleischer
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Madrid took its time, but finally moved into Phase 1 of the de-escalation process on May 25, and although we were in a 'Phase 0.5' with a bit fewer restrictions before then, that didn't include the opening of terraces. But since the 25th of May we have been able to enjoy one of our favourite outdoor activities (and practically one of the most recommendable as the temperatures start going up): relaxing on a terrace with a drink and a bite to eat. Well-poured draught beers, nibbles and plenty of mask-covered smiles started to appear on the pavements and patios outside some of our favourite bars and restaurants. These are the top options for spending a bit of time at a table outside in this strange season while still respecting safety measures to protect yourself and others.

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Best Madrid terraces open now

Picalagartos NH Collection Gran Via
Foto: NH Collection Gran Via

Picalagartos Sky Bar

Hotels Centro

A space that already had a limited capacity is made even more exclusive as it reopens. The ninth floor of the NH Gran Vía Collection hotel opens back up with a premiere as well, from Italian mixologist Luca Anastasio, who's in charge of the drinks and cocktail menu. And a few days before mid-June, the restaurant space run by Manuel Berganza will also be available. There you'll find not just great views, but amazing dishes on the menu such as grilled artichokes with Manchego cheese, baby squid with onions or grilled Iberian pork with broccolini.

Terraza Rubaiyat
Foto: Israel de lago

Rubaiyat

Restaurants Grills Plaza de Castilla

The impressive lush greenery of this colonial oasis just off Av. Alberto Alcocer is on display and ready to welcome you. You might be drawn in by the temptation of one of their famous caipirinhas, then stay a while for a bite. These days they've got the menu delivered to you by QR, and serviettes and cutlery vacuum-packed and brought to each customer individually. You'll need it to dig in to their classic meat dishes, fresh fish offerings such as a sea bass ceviche or grilled bluefin tuna with black sesame, quinoa, blackberry chutney and ginger foam.

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Terraza de Raimunda
Foto: Raimunda

Raimunda

Restaurants Fusion Centro

You can book a table by phone or email and be one of the first in when Raimunda opens on June 5. Once settled in on the terrace with a capacity of about 50 clients, you can order from a menu via QR code for either lunch or dinner during the week (the timetable opens up a bit more at weekends). To go with your drinks, they've got some fantastic nibbles, including 'tequeños' with avocado and pomegranate mousse, halibut tacos, prawns with spiced rice ... And, of course, there are plenty of house classics like potato puff pastries with chipotle sauce and a creamy Russian salad with roasted sweet potato and tobiko.

Terraza de Doñaluz
Foto: Doñaluz

Doñaluz

Restaurants

You can get yourself a spot on this terrace as of June 5 but only with a reservation, so get booking now. If you do get a table, get there on time, as you'll have a maximum of two hours until the next sitting starts so that more people can enjoy not only the views but also the excellent cuisine and cocktails. All customers can check the status of hygiene and disinfection processes through special software.

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Florida Retiro
Foto: Florida Retiro

Florida Retiro

Things to do Retiro

Inside the glorious El Retiro park, surrounded by trees that give it a special microclimate, Florida Retiro is one of Madrid's favourite places to be when the weather is fine. It doesn't matter what time of day or night you go: the outdoor bars offer drinks and eats for all tastes, and the rooftop is an amazing space for music and classy cocktails every evening. They're open as of Wednesday, May 27.

Azotea del Círculo
Foto: Círculo de Bellas Artes

Azotea del Círculo

Restaurants

Also reopening is a space with one of the most spectacular views of Madrid's urban landscape. Safely distanced queues are sure to be back at the door of the Círculo de Bellas Artes, where the rooftop brings Madrid closer to heaven once again. Up there on the Azotea, in addition to the music, tapas (with influences from the Mediterranean and beyond international borders) and drinks you've been missing, you'll also be greeted by vinyls on the floor that remind you to keep your distance, digital menus and dispensers of hand sanitiser. You'll feel as safe as you do amazed by your surroundings.

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Terraza de Carbón Negro
Foto: Carbón Negro

Carbón Negro

Restaurants Mediterranean Barrio de Salamanca

Carbón Negro boasts a spectacular kitchen, two floors, infinite windows and a great chef, who has recruited suppliers throughout the country, mainly from the north. The beef cutlet he gets from the Basque Country (which spends 40-45 days maturing) is prepared over crackling embers and makes for an extraordinary main event in a culinary festival that you can start with a 'chistorra' sausage from Navarra and some outstanding vegetables, all cooked on the grill. Leave room for the cheesecake.

Azotea de Casa Suecia
Foto: Casa Suecia

Casa Suecia

Restaurants

The rooftop of the NH Collection Madrid Suecia bestows once again upon Madrid its comfy seating and incredible views. Open every day from noon to midnight, the restaurant offers informal lunch menus with its Casa Suecia Mex – tacos made to order and home-made guacamole – and the Casa Suecia Burger – one of their most popular items, which is now also available in a vegetarian version. You can always add menu items to your order, such as a plate of Iberian cold cuts, a serving of Russian salad or a salmon tart. And we can all rejoice as their weekend brunch returns as of from May 31 (Saturday and Sunday from 12.30pm to 4pm).

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Entrada de El Jardín de Alma
Foto: El Jardín de Alma

El Jardín de Alma

If you head over to El Jardín de Alma (Arturo Soria, 207) this week, you'll be among the first ever of its customers. Jesús González Espartero and his chef Borja Segura open the doors of this new restaurant on May 28. A two-metre distance is guaranteed as are some good grilled scallops with citrus vinaigrette, a monkfish carpaccio braised with paprika olive oil and, what's already shaping up to be a must on the menu, the steak tartare. In this new space, the grill takes on a special role. The most carnivorous among you will be happy with items that range from hamburgers to 45-day-aged tomahawk steaks.

Terraza de Ramses
Foto: Ramses

Ramses

Restaurants

Welcome to what is probably the most exclusive terrace around the Puerta de Alcalá. The chefs at Arzak Instructions, who manage the menu of the entire space (designed by Philippe Starck), start back to work once again with their cuisine that's based in tradition but with modern touches, their nods to the Basque Country sifted through a filter of local avant-garde. As of May 25 you can sit in the shade of the terrace trees with all safety measures guaranteed.

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Terraza de Colósimo
Foto: Colósimo

Colósimo

Restaurants

First they started delivering their renowned Spanish potato omelette (among the tops in the city) to our homes, and now brothers Ricardo and Manuel Romero are bringing the first tables out to their terrace (right there on C/ José Ortega y Gasset) because, under their umbrellas, their ridiculously freshly made star dish tastes even better. Their traditional small dishes such as Russian salad, gazpacho and 'cocido' croquettes get the same beautiful treatment as their 'urta a la roteña' (sea bream) and their steak tartare. Sitting and dining here is always a joy.

Terraza de Mama Campo
Foto: Mama Campo

Mama Campo

Restaurants Spanish Chamberí

Mama Campo's owners have merged their two menus, keeping the most popular dishes, for this anticipated return to the terraces. You'll know theirs as it's the most colourful and appetising in Plaza de Olavide. They open from noon with half their capacity – 12 tables – and a QR code on the tables that brings up the menu on your mobile. They do accept reservations both online and by phone. Tip: Do call if you really want a table on a weekend night as they fill up quickly. That should tell you something!

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Terraza de Bosco de Lobos
Foto: Bosco de Lobos

Bosco de Lobos

Restaurants Italian Alonso Martínez

In the heart of the headquarters of the COAM (Official College of Architects of Madrid) and with the elegant interior design and meticulous savoir-faire that is expected of such a place, you'll find this space that's backed by the stellar restaurant group En Compañía de Lobos. The culinary efforts a Bosco de Lobos, whether you're going for a pleasant brunch or a casual snack, sitting at an indoor table or taking a spot on the chic terrace, gravitates toward Italian cuisine. Risottos, pasta dishes, carpaccios and the most authentic Milanese come together in a space with wide appeal.

Cachivache
Foto: Cachivache

Cachivache

Bars and pubs Chamartín

With Cachivache, the Aparicio brothers have given Madrid a place where you can get unbeatable value for money, and where the multicoloured terrace bursts into life every afternoon in the warmer months. They're always looking for seasonal ingredients and the combination of international flavours with traditional dishes. It's easy to dive into the crunchy pork snacks that are the 'torreznos', though there are many other temptations to share. How about a glass of the Pazo Señorans Albariño while you decide?

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Terraza de Rocacho
Foto: Rocacho

Rocacho

Restaurants Barbecue Chamartín

Get yourself to the wonderful terrace at Rocacho, especially if you're craving some excellent grilled meat. If you want to try beef that's spent 90 days maturing, this is your place, and it's prepared on the grill with oak wood, another feather in the restaurant's cap. Meat lovers can delight in variety as well, with entrecôte carpaccio, steak tartare or beef burgers. You can choose other dishes such as some great rice recipes made like they do near the Mediterranean, fish options, and starters that show of a bit of creativity, like a delicate grilled red shrimp lasagna. 

Terraza de Cyrclo
Foto: Cyrclo

Cyrclo

Cyrclo had the strange fortune of opening just a few months ago on a corner of Chamberí (Paseo General Martínez Campos, 42), basing their offer on the so-called Harvard Dish (50 percent fruit and veg, 25 percent carbs and 25 percent protein). They use seasonal ingredients cooked in a vacuum atmosphere and at a low temperature. The healthy menu is available on their terrace, which currently holds five tables with a capacity for ten diners. Expect a zero-contact space, thanks to technology, as you place your order and pay for it with your mobile using QR codes you'll find at the table.

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Patio de Leones
Foto: Patio de Leones

Patio de Leones

Bars and pubs Barrio de Salamanca

On the terrace at Patio de Leones you can sample from their  impressive bar with 500 varieties of wine, and a tapas menu that features items close to Madrid's heart. When you want more than tapas, try the stews or more complete dishes. But do remember that one of the greatest hits here is the thick dipping chocolate with churros for breakfast or a snack. They are 100 percent artisanal and made fresh by a third-generation master churro cook who is part of the kitchen team. You can't get more traditional than that.

Terraza de Sa Brisa
Foto: Sa Brisa

Sa Brisa

Restaurants Spanish Retiro

Just like there are two Ibizas, there are also two Sa Brisas; one on the island and the other in front of the Retiro. You can even get a whiff of the Meditteranean at our local Sa Brisa if you close your eyes and breathe in the 'bullit de peix' boiled fish dish. There are also two styles –pure and fusion – that intertwine in search of harmony on the menu and joy in the mouth. Esther and Pere bring exciting dishes to the mix with a sea cucumber stuffed with 'sobrasada' sausage, and can also surprise with a black pork Chinese dumpling or a photogenic hot dog.

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Terraza de Pipa & Co
Foto: Pipa & Co

Pipa & Co

Restaurants Global Chamartín

From breakfast time till the first drinks of the evening, and for the increasingly popular brunch at weekends, this place has become an informal meeting point for the well-to-do people in the area (especially thirtysomethings). They serve dishes that prove popular, burgers, pasta, steak tartare, chicken roll and pizzas, in the cosy interior (featuring wood and some vintage chairs) and the nice terrace that's cosy even in winter.    

Frida

Restaurants Mediterranean Chueca

You'll find this quiet oasis, decorated in wood, bright colours and extraordinary natural light, in the centre of the always bustling neighbourhood of Chueca. It's got a pleasant terrace in a little square that may not seem like much, but, under the shade of trees, you're in a great space for the brunch they serve up every weekend. They always have a battery of smoothies and home-made desserts on offer. The rest of the menu looks toward the Mediterranean and further afield. They always use fresh produce, and serve up light dishes, perfect for a casual get-together.

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Aarde

Restaurants Fusion Barrio de Salamanca

Standing in the shadow of the Puerta de Alcalá, this restaurant that's part of the well-known Paraguas Group, led by Sandro Silva and Marta Seco, is 800 square meters (with a capacity for 190 diners) of esparto grass, bamboo and ceramics as decor, with grilled veg, grains, fish from the Strait of Gibraltar, and organic meat as its strong suits on the menu. Great attention to detail is given to craft, both in the decor (the work of Cousi Interiorismo) and in the kitchen.

Get great eats from Madrid restaurants without leaving home

Pinsa from El Bacaro de Fabio Gasparini
Photograph: Marcu Ovidiu

The best Madrid restaurants with home delivery

Restaurants

If you're salivating for some great food prepared by stellar chefs and delivered to you in Madrid, you've come to the right place. We give you some of the best dishes (from sushi to gourmet pasta, paellas and burgers) you can order up when you're in the mood to support your favourite restaurant or you want to eat well but just don't feel like cooking.

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