Never the twain shall meet
December 23, 2007 1:41 PM   Subscribe

Where to meet a friend in Madrid? We need something very precise, since our cell phones will not be working!

I am meeting a friend in Madrid on the morning of the 27th. Her flight gets in around 11:30, so I'm guessing we will be meeting around 12:30. What I need is a place that is very precise and very easy to find so we will be sure to find each other.

I will be checking out of a hotel on Calle Sevilla near Puerta del Sol, near the Sol metro station. She will be coming in from the airport on the trains. We will probably be leaving Madrid a few hours later from the Atocha railway station. Neither of us has been to Madrid before and we have absolutly no familiarity with the metro system, etc.

Is there a coffeeshop or restaurant near Sol? Maybe we should meet at or near Atocha railway station? If we meet at the railway station, is there a particular place that we both will be able to find? I'm worried about how large the station will be, etc.

posted by ohio to Travel & Transportation around Madrid, Spain (7 answers total)
We always used to use "under the clock" in Puerta del Sol. Is the clock still there? That worked pretty well.
posted by Stewriffic at 3:03 PM on December 23, 2007

Both the statue of «el Oso y el madroño» (the bear and tree statue at the end of the Calle del Carmen) and the «Kilómetro cero» (the starting point of the Spanish road network) are classic places to meet in Madrid, and they are both in Puerta del Sol, hence quite easy to reach and well communicated.

They are both pretty specific places, so you should be able to see each other easily, and pretty much anyone in Madrid should be able to give you directions to reach them in the unlikely case that you get lost. Pictures of both are available at the inevitable Wikipedia entry.

The Atocha railway station is pretty huge, and it can be tricky to meet there. The only place I can think of which is both relatively compact and easy to spot would be the monument to the victims of the 2004 Madrid bombings («monumento a las víctimas del 11-M»), which should be easy to find (if a bit creepy).

Hope that helps. Have fun in Madrid!
posted by doctorpiorno at 3:07 PM on December 23, 2007

Best answer: Another option in Atocha is at the cafe in front of the conservatory area. There's a big indoor conservatory, and one cafe with tables out in front of it. It's inside, which might be nice, and you could sit down and read a book while you wait. It might not be specific enough for you, though.
posted by matematichica at 3:21 PM on December 23, 2007

Best answer: Atocha is a large station but the conservatory is pretty easy to find. At one end is a small cafe which is a great meeting spot. This time of year is kind of cold to wait outside.
posted by JJ86 at 3:33 PM on December 23, 2007

Response by poster: Thanks guys! We're meeting at the cafe.
posted by ohio at 3:38 PM on December 23, 2007

I'd second meeting by the statue of El Oso y el madroño. Very central point, and a classic meeting spot everyone knows. I used to live not too far from Sol and you can't miss it.

Alternatively, you could meet in front of the Reina Sofía museum, which is near Atocha. It's a large museum, but I've met people in front before without trouble.
posted by cmgonzalez at 3:46 PM on December 23, 2007

Wherever you choose to meet, agree that you will be there at 12:30, 14:30, 16:30, etc, and have an agreed upon plan for the following day as well. That way, if your friend is delayed at the airport, you don't have to spend all day at the cafe; you just have to be there for 10 minutes or so every two hours, and otherwise you can go off and windowshop or sleep or whatever.
posted by Forktine at 5:24 PM on December 23, 2007

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