Thyssen Bornemisza Museum visit

February 8, 2006

Today we began our art tour. Madrid is known for its art museums so we were excited to see what they had to offer visitors. The top three are the Thyssen Bornemisza, El Prado and Reina Sofia. From our hotel it was a short 20 minute walk to the Thyssen museum. We decided to purchase the 3 museum pass which gives a small discount if you are interested in visiting the three major museums. The museum includes a selection of works which have been collected by the Thyssen-Bornemisza family over the generations. It has been organized chronologically which allowed us to review the floor plan and hit the areas which we enjoy. Since Europe is home to many great museums and we've hit quite a few we know what we like and don't like at this point. With that said we gave less attention to the Renaissance and Classicism periods and focused our time viewing the 20th century paintings on the ground floor. It was here that we could take in works from Dali', Picasso, O'Keefe and Jackson Pollock. Feeling satisfied from our visit we walked to the Parque Del Buen Retiro to enjoy some of the remaining rays of sunshine. The day warmed up nicely so we were happy to stroll leisurely throughout the maze of paths and sidewalks. The park also has a nice lake and boats for rental so it provides a nice respite from the fast pace of the city. Later on we decided to try one of the local tapas restaurants. Since there are so many to choose from we had a hard time finding a place with a good vibe, low prices and tasty food. Some of the tapas bars are lit up like a cafeteria while others are filled with smoke. The one we found had a nice environment and great servers but it was a bit higher priced. By the time we left it was only 11 pm, which is early by Madrid's standards, so we hit one more tapas bar and tried our best Spanish while dealing with the servers. It's really refreshing to have someone understand us verbally instead of always relying on facial and body gestures.

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