The city of Madrid is the capitol of Spain and is known for its beauty and history. As the largest city in Spain, it has a population of approximately 3.3 million people.
Museo Nacional del Prado
The Museo Nacional del Prado, known simply as the Museo del Prado, is the primary national art museum which is located in the central part of Madrid and is ranked first nationally and eleventh globally for visitors to the museum. Its construction began during the reign of Charles III, but was stopped at the end of his reign and was only started again by his grandson, Ferdinand VII. This museum contains art from all over Europe from the 12th century to the 19th century. It contains works by Rembrandt, Raphael, Francisco de Goya, and Titian. The Museo del Prado currently has approximately 7,600 paintings, 4,800 prints, 1,000 sculptures, and 8,200 drawings.
Palacio Real de Madrid (Royal Palace of Madrid)
The Palacio Real de Madrid, or Royal Palace of Madrid, is the official residence of the Royal Family of Spain. The original palace that was built on the location was constructed in the 16th century. Among other things, it was home to an art gallery which housed artwork by such legendary artists as Leonardo da Vinci and Raphael, among other artists. However, this building was destroyed in a fire on Christmas Eve of 1734, which burned for four days. Some of the works of art were saved by people throwing them out the windows of the building. Also, shortly prior to the fire, the king had ordered a large portion of the art collection to be moved to another palace, thus sparing these priceless works from destruction. The new Royal Palace was planned and constructed beginning in 1760, with the Charles III moving into the palace in 1764. The building has been renovated and restored since the original construction. The Royal Palace contains the Sabatini Gardens, Campo del Moro Gardens, Royal Library, and the Royal Armoury. It is the second largest palace in Europe, second only to the Louvre Palace. In addition to the artwork located in the Royal Palace, it is also home to the only complete Stradivarius string quintet remaining in the world.
Puerta del Sol
The Puerta del Sol was originally one of the gates to the wall that surrounded the city of Madrid in the 15th Century. The area surrounding it has been an important place for people to meet as it was the destination for people going to the Post Office, where people were able to obtain the latest information and news. the Puerta del Sol contains the office of the President of Madrid , which is in the old Post Office, a statue of Charles III on a horse, and other famed locations. In recent years, the Puerta del Sol has also been a place of demonstrations for citizens to protest for democracy.
Auditorio Nacional de Musica (National Auditorium of Music)
The Auditorio Nacional de Musica, or National Auditorium of Music, was made up of several locations where concert are held. The Auditorio Nacional opened in 1988, as the city had decided that they needed to have a modern concert hall since they had not had one up to that point. The main concert all is the Sala Sinfonica, or Symphonic Hall, which can seat over 2,000 people and houses a large pipe organ. The smaller hall is called the Sala de Camara, or Chamber Hall, which can seat almost 700 people. There is also the Sala General del Coro, or General Choir Hall, which can seat over 200 people. The Auditorio also has several places were individuals and groups can meet to practice.
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