’One word to describe Madrid is chaotic. It’s different from any
other European capital. I love the place so much I can’t think of any
other city I’d prefer to work in,’ says Frank Martinez, media director
of Carat Espana, who’s lived in Spain for ten years.
’Madrid has a 26-hour day. The business day starts at 9am, followed by
breakfast two hours later. There’s a two-hour lunch in the afternoon,
then it’s back to the office until seven or eight.
’You go home to watch some TV, then have dinner at about 10.30 - don’t
ever go into a Madrid restaurant at nine because it will be empty.
People tend to listen to football on the radio at midnight and then go
to bed at around two in the morning. And that’s just in winter.
’Wine is still a speciality in Madrid and the best stuff isn’t exported.
The highest quality meat, fish and vegetables all come to Madrid. Fish
is delivered to the market three times a day and it’s much better than
anything you’ll ever get on the coast, which tends to be kept for the
’I live slap bang in the city centre and I love it because it’s so
hectic. I go to work on a motorbike, which is quicker than by car.
’Nobody walks in Madrid unless it’s for the evening or Sunday lunchtime
promenades, which are regarded as very important. Although most people
can speak English, knowing Spanish really is a must.’