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Hip bars and galleries, independent theaters and music venues, young people with tattoos and funky hair, narrow winding streets — this is Malasaña. Near the center, Plaza Dos de Mayo is a gathering of friends outside bars, dog owners, artists under craft tents, and creative types with notebooks and sketchpads on the plaza’s benches. It may not be as neat and tidy as many other parts of the city, but this only adds to
the Malasaña edge. Shops and bars here range from hippie-crunchy to upscale trendy, and on weekends, the streets are bustling around the clock as the nightlife progresses from dinner to bar to disco to late-night food. On the west side of the neighbourhood is the subdistrict called Conde Duque, named after a large pink fort in its center that has been converted into a cultural center for exhibitions and performances. Prettier yet just as edgy, this intimate corner of Malasaña is home to a young international community.