It’s no secret that Christmas Eve and Christmas Day are among the most important days of the year in Madrid.
All throughout the city, business owners close up shop and head home for a few days to spend some much-needed time with their families. The same goes for most restaurants. However, if you’re visiting over the holidays, you’ll definitely need to eat at some point—and preferably not at a cheesy tourist trap or international fast food chain. These picks for where to eat in Madrid on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day will help you make the most of every meal and feast like a local.
Where to eat on Christmas Eve in Madrid
Known as nochebuena in Spanish, Christmas Eve is a night of magical festivities and family fun. Many madrileños will spend the evening gathered around a table piled high with all kinds of festive fare and surrounded by the people who matter most. But even if you don’t have a Spanish home for the holidays, you can still eat like a local on Christmas Eve in Madrid at one of these excellent restaurants.
El Fogón de los Deseos
Dinner and a show—what’s not to love? There’s nothing better than enjoying some high-quality entertainment while digging into course after course of delectable dishes. Luckily, that’s just what’s in store for guests at the Christmas Eve dinner at El Fogón de los Deseos. A luxurious dinner, open bar, and a spectacular show will set you back €189.95. They even offer a special kids’ menu, and the show is family-friendly, making this one of our favorite options for families.
Make your way to the gorgeous Restaurant Haroma at the Heritage Hotel for one of the most exclusive dining experiences on Christmas Eve in Madrid. Supervised by two-Michelin-starred executive chef Mario Sandoval, their expert kitchen staff will be cooking up one of the most luxurious Christmas Eve meals in the city. The menu, designed by Sandoval himself, includes six exquisite courses spotlighting seasonal flavors and fresh ingredients. Indulge in this once-in-a-lifetime meal for €190.
Celebrate a glamorous Christmas Eve at Bloved, a standout gem among the collection of tourist traps that line Gran Vía. Located inside the sleek, contemporary Hotel Catalonia, the beautiful restaurant offers a lovely setting for enjoying a Christmas Eve meal. The menu includes a starter and main course (both with two options—you pick!) as well as dessert, coffee, bread and wine, all for the reasonable price of €55. Plus, they offer uninterrupted service all day long on December 24, so you can eat at whatever time you’d like (though reservations are necessary).
A contemporary restaurant with classic touches, La Antoñita is making a name for itself in Madrid’s vibrant La Latina neighborhood. A foodie paradise with contemporary, market-fresh cuisine inside the Posada del Dragón hotel, its excellent nochebuena menu makes it the place to be on Christmas Eve. For €89 per person, the menu includes five courses of delectable holiday dishes and wine.
Where to eat on Christmas Day in Madrid
Spaniards may favor the Three Kings over Santa Claus, but that doesn’t mean that Christmas gets completely shoved aside. There may not be as many presents (some families exchange gifts on December 25, but the majority wait until January 6); however, holiday cheer is still in full swing. That means—you guessed it—most bars and restaurants are closed on Christmas Day. But no need to worry: you still have a handful of excellent options available.
That’s right—the Hotel Catalonia’s classy restaurant also offers a Christmas Day menu in addition to their special meal options on Christmas Eve! Once again, you’ll get a choice of menu items accompanied by a selection of excellent wines and desserts for €55, and reservations are required. This lovely little restaurant makes for the perfect option for where to eat in Madrid on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day!
Step back into the glamorous Madrid of the past at Media Ración, the stylish restaurant inside Madrid’s Hotel Urso. The retro decor and reimagined traditional recipes remain true to the roots of traditional Spanish gastronomy while providing a comfortable, modern feel. An elegant yet unpretentious spot to enjoy good food with good people, they open from 1 to 7 p.m. on December 25, giving you plenty of time to enjoy a leisurely Christmas lunch the Spanish way.
Another excellent pick for both where to eat in Madrid on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, Restaurant Haroma at the Heritage Hotel is serving up a special holiday brunch on December 25. Once again designed by Michelin-starred chef Mario Sandoval, the menu costs €75 per person and includes a fabulous mix of classic Spanish dishes and new, modern favorites. The price includes one main dish as well as access to a full brunch buffet and drinks.
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Life is too short to speak one language and stay in one place. In 2015, this philosophy took her from familiar Ohio to sunny southern Spain. Usually drinking tinto de verano, reading Lorca, or attempting to dance flamenco (not all at once). Follow her blog, Viatic Couture, for more.