Madrid bars: a local’s guide to sipping in style

Discover the best design-led Madrid bars, as sampled by local travel and culture writer Agnish Ray

Two of the best-designed Madrid bars, with deep orange and rich blue interiors respectively
Left, Gilda Haus oozes fantasy and indulgence. Right, Yves Klein blue and utilitarian chic at Yeite
(Image credit: Left: Photography by German Saiz. Courtesy of Gilda Haus. Right: Photography by Salva López. Courtesy of Yeite)

Nowadays, tippling in Madrid bars seems incomplete without some flavoursome design to nibble on. With a wave of recent openings, designers and architects are crafting aesthetics that pair perfectly with what’s poured into your glass. Whether channelling edgy, industrial chic or nostalgia, these bars feature inventive approaches to design while incorporating elements of the Spanish capital’s history and traditions. Here are some of the key players shaking (and stirring) up Madrid’s drinks scene.

Madrid bars serving up style

La Analógica

Retro Madrid bar interior

(Image credit: Courtesy of Analógica)

US-born Nico Paredes worked in the music industry for several years before moving to Madrid from Nashville in 2022 – and he soon opened this indie music-themed bar, where his collection of 200 vinyls spin on the Technics SL 1650 record player. The walls display vinyl covers by artists ranging from The Strokes and Radiohead to Jungle and Lana del Rey, while each cocktail on the menu is inspired by a different album, including ‘Antics’ by Interpol and ‘King of the Beach’ by Wavves – all also exhibited. The space’s dark blue and orange colour theme is inspired by the cover art for ‘Invisible People’ by Chicano Batman, with leather sofas and vintage chairs sourced by furniture provider Francisco Segarra completing the retro look.

La Analógica is located at C. del Espíritu Santo, 15,

Bar Trafalgar

Pool table in Madrid bar

(Image credit: Courtesy of Bar Trafalgar)

With a façade inspired by an Edward Hopper painting, this bar has been capturing the nighthawks of Madrid’s Chamberí neighbourhood since it opened in 2022. Designed by architect Marta Banús, the space revolves around a large, curved, peninsular bar, whose counter has a zinc-looking finish created by metalworkers in the town of Valdepeñas, recalling Spanish traditions of old. The pool table is complete with a stainless steel cover that doubles up as a table surface, and artworks sourced from Madrid’s Estampa Gallery hang on the industrial-looking exposed walls. Meanwhile, the bar stools, blue velvet seats and cream-coloured leatherette sofas are the architecture studio’s own bespoke designs.

Bar Trafalgar is located at C. de Alburquerque, 14,

La Estrella

dim blue Madrid bar interior

(Image credit: Photography by Salva López. Courtesy of Yeite)

Dark, star-filled skies are what inspired the design of this new two-floored cocktail joint, whose name translates to ‘the star’. With the help of Verbena Design Studio, the owners created a space that exudes a sense of nostalgic glamour, with velvet seating and 1970s Italian brass wall lights. Murals by the artist Ignasi Monreal made of blue and white ceramic tiles depict images of dreamy hedonism, which the designers say evoke the spirit of Madrid’s nightlife. Downstairs, the upholstered ceiling and distressed mirrors are dotted with stars, while the walls are filled with historic artworks sourced second-hand from Madrid’s Ritz hotel following its recent refurbishment, adding to the old-world aesthetic.

La Estrella is located at Calle de la Estrella, 3, @laestrellamadrid

Fat Cats Cocktail House

bright orange bar seating

(Image credit: Photography by Fernanda Garnica. Courtesy of Fat Cats Cocktail House)

Inspired by the Fat Cat Burglars, a notorious gang of thieves who stole from wealthy elites around the US in the 1960s and 1970s, Alejandra Pombo studio wanted to design a space reminiscent of the luxurious homes of these robbers’ hapless victims. The bar’s entrance recreates the window of a jewellery store, a nod to the allure of looted jewels. Inside, the designers say, the carpeted floors and the fabric walls create the feeling of a 1970s American mansion, while the mirrors in the side of the bar, the corridor and the surface of the diamond-shaped tables suggest there’s nowhere to hide for even the most risqué among us.

Fat Cats Cocktail House is located at C. del Infante, 5,

Gilda Haus

Terracotta-toned bar interior with mirror

(Image credit: Photography by German Saiz. Courtesy of Gilda Haus)

A high-gloss, metallic shade of pearl orange floods the floors, ceilings and walls at this new bar serving cocktails and gildas (pickled goods on skewers – a Madrid favourite). Designed by Codoo studio, the space oozes fantasy and indulgence, from the velvet curtains to the fabric carpets. Touches of light create nuance and texture within the monochromatic palette, such as the office-style tube lighting found in bright, concentrated blocks around the ceiling. The lightweight stainless steel chairs and tables are recognisable as those used on the terraces of classic Madrid bars: the designers say that placing such ubiquitous items in an otherwise highly stylised space brings avant-garde design together with the simplest of traditions.

Gilda House is located at C. de San Mateo, 6, @gildahaus_


opulent curved bar with ceiling display in Madrid

(Image credit: Photography by Christian Horan. Courtesy of ISA)

With offices across the US, London and Bangkok, AvroKO studio designed the five different spaces of this Asian-inspired cocktail bar, located in Madrid’s Four Seasons hotel. One seating area features Japanese kintsugi-style decoration on the walls, while floral patterned fabric covers the walls and ceilings of the plush, romantically lit central lounge; Madrid-based artist Sandra Val created a ceiling fresco in the main bar area, and the speakeasy-style red room features a circular banquette and a sake barrel in the middle, surrounded by a variety of vintage chairs. The cocktails feature ingredients like lychee, jasmine, kumquat, shiso, ginger and lemongrass, while a selection of nigiri, sashimi, gyozas and more are available on the food menu.

ISA is located at C. de Sevilla, 3,


Madrid bar interior with timber pillars

(Image credit: Courtesy of Persimmon’s)

The cocktails at this Georgia-inspired bar revolve around the traditional chacha, a traditional Georgian distillate, which this new Madrid establishment produces from the glossy, orange-coloured fruit that lends it its name. The persimmon is celebrated in the design too, such as in an artwork by Georgian artist Tinatin Tskhadadze, or in the colour of the restaurant’s most eye-catching table, designed by Olga Rusakova of Chapter One Studio. Swirls of the persimmon’s rich colour are also found in the marbled surface of the bar’s dark onyx counter, which is illuminated from within. Spread across two levels in the Salesas district, the space features items by nearby suppliers, like lighting by Ovalamp and tables and chairs by G69, while the bar stools are from Interiorismo, a Georgian outlet selling Spanish-designed furniture.

Persimmons is located at C. de Bárbara de Braganza, 2,


deep blue wall in Madrid bar

(Image credit: Photography by Salva López. Courtesy of Yeite)

The designers at Plantea Estudio say they wanted to create a ‘primitive’ look in this discreet, intimate new hideout in the Conde Duque neighbourhood, which they perfectly delivered. The space’s centrepiece is a monolithic stone block acting as the bar, and next to it, guests can enjoy signature cocktails and sophisticated snacks at low, circular tables (made of the same heavy granite) with space-efficient wooden stools that mimic the simplicity of old Madrid taverns. Together with the Pirelli rubber tiling on the floor and the stainless steel bar stools, the look is sturdy and utilitarian, but the space’s most striking feature is the Yves Klein blue on the walls – brilliant and evocative in the daylight, while deep and alluring in the evening. Look out for Alvar Aalto lighting pieces too.

Yeite is located at C. del Conde Duque, 14,

Agnish Ray is a travel and culture writer based in Madrid. Aside from Wallpaper*, he covers Spain for publications like The Guardian, The Times, The Telegraph, Financial Times, Conde Nast Traveller, Sleeper, Elephant, Kinfolk and others. Agnish has also worked as a strategist in the arts sector and as an adjunct professor at IE School of Architecture and Design in Spain.