17 nov. 2016

Justin Bieber in Madrid!

Calling all AIL Madrid music fans! Justin Bieber’s coming to Madrid next Wednesday 23rd November as part of his world tour of the album Purpose! The concert is taking place in the Barclaycard Center which happens to be only a block away from our school! In fact, on your way to class you may have seen a huge line of people camping out over night to try and get their hands on those elusive tickets!

Since his first album in 2009, Justin Bieber has become one of the most successful artists of all time. He has broken world records and this album Purpose was the fourth best selling album of 2015 with worldwide sales of over 3 million!

If (somehow) you managed to find yourself a ticket, have a great time and don’t stop ‘Beliebing’! Maybe stop by one of our Spanish classes on the way!

The Madrid Derby!

This Saturday, the Madrid Derby is back: Athletico Madrid against Real Madrid. This is one of the most famous fixtures in world football and the city is buzzing with anticipation. It is also a great time to practice your Spanish by expressing your own opinions on the football as well as listening to and reacting to others’. Be prepared to discuss your views on starting XIs, who should play at right back, refereeing decisions and so on…!

The league table is beginning to take shape and this is a very important game for both sides to win not only because of their rivalry. The rivalry however gives it real edge and it creates incredible drama. There is real passion amongst the fans and Madrid comes alive throughout the ninety minutes: bars are jam-packed and the streets are filled with people singing their hearts out and waving flags. Some of the best and most famous footballers in the world will be on show such as Cristiano Ronaldo and Antoine Griezmann and the expectation on their shoulders is enormous.

At the moment, Real Madrid is sitting pretty at the top of the table whilst Athletico is down in fourth, six points behind the leaders. Whoever comes out on top will win those important three points together with bragging rights over their neighbors! The game on Saturday is taking place in the Vicente Calderón Stadium so home advantage for the men in red and white – this could play a major part in deciding the result as the fans here are like a 12th man. If you’re lucky enough to have a ticket to the game, you’ll understand how important they are – the noise that is created in the stadium is unbelievable.

So if you’re in Madrid this weekend, head down to your local bar, chat Spanish to the local fans, and experience the passion first-hand!

8 nov. 2016

Christmas time in Madrid!

Can you believe it’s that time of year again?! Christmas is right around the corner and Madrid is preparing itself for another fantastic celebration. Once the decorative lights are up and the Christmas markets are in full flow, there's no better place in the world to enjoy the festivities- so give your loved ones (and/or yourself) the gift of Spanish this year and come celebrate with an AIL Madrid Super Special Christmas Course!

A few things we look forward to sharing with you during this festive season are:

The Christmas Lights

In late November every year, the Christmas lights are turned on throughout Madrid in over 90 streets! Beautifully decorated Christmas trees are also dotted around the city which add to the magical atmosphere. The spectacular lighting of the main buildings such as the Puerta Alcalá and the Palacio de Cibeles has to be seen to be believed and if you're looking for a particularly Christmassy experience, head down to the Puerta del Sol on the day the lights get turned on. They're absolutely stunning!

The Christmas Markets

Christmas is a magical time in Madrid and the Christmas markets play a big part in creating this ‘magic’. Here are two markets that are full of delicious festive snacks and traditional Spanish goodies:

25 oct. 2016

Exciting Halloween Ideas!

A Place to stay during Halloween

La Casa de los Horrores de Aranjuez is the most terrifying house in the whole of Spain because according to legend it’s haunted! Over a long period of time, hundreds of souls and people have been trapped by this haunted house. Today, no one wants to live nearby and no one dares talk about what has happened inside. Are you brave enough enter…?

From 130 euros. This price includes: dinner, accommodation, breakfast, an open bar, Cluedo, a horror show and multiple terrifying games and puzzles.
Address: Camino de Villamejor, 28300, Madrid

To party

The Moby Dick Group is emerging from the darkness for one special night in Madrid! Their busiest and most popular party takes place at The Irish Rover. In fact it is probably the most popular Halloween party in Madrid! This is down to the incredible decorations, people dressed up for the occasion and the terrifying atmosphere that is created. If you dare enter this party, you must pass through the now famous Pasaje de Terror which is riddled with spooky and threatening beasts from the afterlife. If you survive this, you’re greeted with a free shot to help you through your fear! Also, if you turn up dressed in a scary costume, you’ll get discounts throughout the whole night!

In the Moby Dick Club itself, Halloween is synonymous with rock music and partying into the early hours! The Exploding Boys will be opening this night of incredible music that has been named the R.I.P Rock Party! It is sure to be a night to remember. As in The Irish Rover, those who make the effort to dress up, get a free shot as well as discounts throughout the night. Enjoy!

Finally, the Moby Dick group celebrates Halloween in Areia Chill Out and Lola 09. It is now a tradition that those who work there put on incredible makeup and terrifying costumes – many people come simply to see these! Together with the impressive costumes, two young DJs, Cherry Pie and Alviker, will be performing some magic of their own from the decks!

If you’re looking for a good night out on Halloween, you won’t be stuck for ideas!

To eat out

The restaurants Enigmatium y El Enterrador both set up exciting Halloween themed dinners! You’ll have great fun figuring out a series of puzzles and witty riddles!
From 45 euros. For the Enigmatium, the price includes; dinner (vegetarian menu available), open bar, 3 hours of entertainment and a photographer! For the Enterrador, the price includes dinner, a fun escaping game, open bar, entrance to the Mansión Dam, a drink and a disco!

To visit

On Tuesday 1st November at 1800 hrs in the Plaza Mayor, discover, with a free guided tour, the places that have witnessed Madrid’s most famous murders and their mysteries.
Pre-book to go and see “Crimen y Misterio en Madrid” (“Crime and Mystery in Madrid”) at the Tourist Office in the Plaza Mayor.
The group Carpetania have also planned their Halloween trip to Madrid: “Misterios y secretos de Madrid”, (“Mysteries and Secrets of Madrid”) on 31st October at 2030 hrs. This is an evening stroll that tells the most dark and sinister stories of Madrid. You’ll pass through the Plaza del Rey, the House of Seven Chimneys, the San José Church, the Caballero de Gracia, Montera street and the streets around the Puerta del Sol.
12 euros. The price includes: the guided walk, printed information about the journey and a drink.

Enjoy Halloween in Madrid!

14 oct. 2016

5 Exciting October Events!

14th -16th October: MadrEAT is a street market that has more than 20 food trucks offering hand-crafted beer, coffee from around the world and international cuisine such as hamburgers, cookies, crepes, handmade goats cheese…the list goes on!
MadrEAT attracts well-known chefs such as Estanis Carenzo (Sudestada y Chifa), Iván Domínguez (Alabaster), Luis Arévalo (Kena) y Mario Sandoval (Coque).
Address: Avenida de Portugal, 28011 Madrid (line 6 Puerta de Ángel, or line 10 Lago)

From 20th to 30th October: Tapapiés is a festival that unites international cuisine (more than 90 bars and restaurants), theatre, street circuses and a wide range of outdoor music concerts: the genres include rap, groove, French world music, Acapella, swing, rock’n roll and reggae…
Prices: 1.50€ per tapa, and 2,50€ for a tapa + a glass of Estrella Damm
Address: Lavapiés, 28012 (line 3 Lavapiés)

21st, 22nd and 23rd October: three days to discover and learn about the historical, cultural and artistic heritage of the capital through guided tours, workshops, talks, concerts and displays. This, the third edition of Madrid Otra Mirada, will have a special section dedicated to Carlos III, known as ‘the greatest Mayor of Madrid’, for the third Centenary of his birth. The vast majority of the activities are free of charge but may require prior booking.
Address: Sol and Gran Vía

22nd and 29th October: Malamarket: a market displaying the works of designers, craftsmen, illustrators as well as second hand items, decorations, and vintage products. It connects the creative side with the economic and social sides of the city. An extremely cool place to visit!
Address: Plaza del Dos de Mayo, 28004 (lines 1 y 10 Tribunal)

Throughout the whole month: exhibitions of the 155 winning photos from the World Press Photo 2016 competition.
Price: 3-5€
Address: Colegio Oficial de Arquitectos de Madrid (COAM), Calle de Hortaleza, 63, 28004 Madrid (line 5 Chueca)

Enjoy Madrid this October!

13 sept. 2016

Back to Madrid Community Fair, this Thursday at 7pm!

This Thursday marks the 3rd annual ‘Back to Madrid’ Community Fair, hosted by the British Benevolent Fund to benefit British expats in need. The fair itself promises to be bigger and more exciting than ever with a cash bar, live music, and dozens of English speaking activities / clubs, social groups, and expat owned local businesses offering info and welcoming smiles for Madrid newbies and veterans alike.