Els Quatre Gats in Barcelona
What is so special about this café that Picasso chose it to exhibit his first drawings? At the end of the 19th century, it held shows and concerts and was the meeting point for artists such as Picasso, Santiago Rusiñol and Ramón Casas. It is a symbol of the bohemian and moderniste Barcelona that was inspired by the Parisian cabaret Le Chat Noir. More recently it was chosen by Woody Allen as the setting for “Vicky Cristina Barcelona”. Today, you can find the restored version of the original on the same street in Barcelona, 3 Montsió, on the ground floor of the beautiful Casa Martí. The famous poster designed by Picasso is still there to welcome people.
Café Gijón in Madrid
On 15 May 1888, the Asturian Gumersindo Gómez opened the Gran Café Gijón in Madrid. It had two parts: one to serve coffee to customers arriving in carriages and another part for the carriages. As fate would have it, this place ended up becoming a cultural institution and a meeting point across different eras for important people such as Pérez Galdós, Valle-Inclán, Gerardo Diego, García Lorca, Dalí, Buñuel, Sorolla, Torrente Ballester, Cela, and even the famous spy Mata-Hari. This café has been painted by artists and described in a dozen books, and is waiting for you at 21 Paseo Recoletos.