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Madrid (Created on 02.07.2011 - Last modified on 15.08.2011)
Real Gay Madrid
Madrid has approximately 6 million residents, including the surrounding countryside, and is the third largest city in the EU, after London and Berlin. Madrid is one of the most attractive cities in Europe, especially for gays and lesbians. After the end of the Franco dictatorship in 1975, the Movida Madrilena rose up, a cultural movement of the urban youth, who wanted to experience all the shrill, defiant and hedonistic life. This was also the starting point of the Spanish lesbian and gay movement, which is indicative of the current situation of homosexuals in Spain: The Spanish society is considered to be one of the most tolerant in Europe. Since 2005 marriage for gays and lesbians is legal, and shortly thereafter the adoption of children for same-sex couples was legalized.

Actually in Spain the world's first documented religious same-sex marriage between two men was held in 1061, married by a priest in a small chapel in Rairiz de Veiga. During this time, so-called oaths of brotherhood between men weren't unusual, which is quite like a wedding or civil partnership, but with the exclusion of sexuality.

The Madrid Chueca district is the multi-cultural gay district, where there is vibrant life until late at night, or until early in the morning, as well as in the adjacent neighborhoods Malasaña and Gran Via, with a lot of interesting places, not only for homosexuals. It should be noted out for tourists that in Spain the evening and the dinner usually starts very late, at about 9 pm. Thereby the start of the nightlife slides into the early morning hours. It may happen that you are one of the first guests at a nightclub, if you already appear at 1 am or 2 am in the night.

In Madrid there are many hotels and hostels, some of them only for gay men, others are straight-friendly and still others completely mixed or just very gay friendly. Particularly recommended are the two gay hostels Pension Madrid House and Hostal Pizarro, where you can also stay with your straight friends. Also to be recommended is Room Mate Oscar with it's good service and openness as well as for men and women and every orientation. Also highly recommended is the very gay-friendly straight Hotel ME Madrid Reina Victoria.
There is a wide variety of bars and pubs with very different audiences, so it's difficult to make the right recommendation. The best tapas bar in town (straight but gay friendly), is El Tigre. For the weekend, the nightclub Sala Bash is recommended, where the legendary Ohm Club invites for dancing on Fridays and Saturdays. Before or during the week you can go for a drink to Enfrente, Gris, Café Figueroa, or to Why Not. Good cocktails are served at Mama Inez. The night club Strong Center with its cruising labyrinth is only for men. Particularly noteworthy is the party Royal Club at Sala Cool, beginning on Saturday at midnight, and Black & White with its eccentric and erotic atmosphere.
Anyone who wants to go to the popular Gula Gula show restaurant should definitely reserve seats. Otherwise you can pay a visit to the oldest restaurant in the world, Restaurante Botin. If this is not for you, stop by the popular gay restaurant El Rincón de Pelayo in the heart of Chueca. If you need just a snack during the day, Cafe XXX should be on your plan.
Madrid has 13 gay saunas and three of them can be recommended in particular, Príncipe Sauna for the bear type, Premium Sauna, the newest gay sauna in Madrid, and the clean and modern Sauna Octopus.
For women El Barberillo de Lavapiés, Smoke Bar or Medea nightclub are worth mentioning.
By the way, the Madrid Gay Pride is one of the biggest and best in Europe.

Sleazy Madrid (April 2012)
Visible - Festival Internacional de Cultura de Madrid LGBT (1 June to 11 July 2011)
infinita Bear Pride Madrid (29 June - 3 July 2011)
Madrid Gay Pride (July 2, 2011)
LesGaiCineMad - Madrid International Gay and Lesbian Film Festival (October 27 to November 6, 2011)
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