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The Retiro Park was the garden of the Buen Retiro Palace that was built in the first half of the seventeenth century, the valid of the King Felipe IV, the Count-Duke of Olivares, I believe it for the enjoyment of the monarch. This historic garden has an area of 118 hectares in which more than 19,000 trees inhabit 167 different species including the oldest tree in Madrid.
The Barrio de Salamanca takes its name from José de Salamanca and Mayol, Marqués de Salamanca. At that time the rest of European capitals implemented urban improvements while in Madrid there was no sewage or running water. Approved by Isabel II the “Ensanche de Madrid” for an orderly growth of the city separating the neighborhoods by social classes. The Marquis of Salamanca thus created an aristocratic neighborhood with new spacious, bright homes, with heating and running water.
Most visitors approach the area around the Retiro park in the early days, after visiting the star attraction of Madrid on their trip, the Prado Museum. Reference is often made to the world-famous museum in relation to the “Paseo del Arte” that forms it with the Thyssen-Bornemisza and Queen Sofia. This “art walk” today also includes the CaixaForum postmodern art center. To the east of the museum district is the Buen Retiro Park. To the north of here is the Salamanca district, an area known for its designer stores, expensive restaurants and futuristic architecture.
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