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Plaza de Toros de Las Ventas

The Plaza de Toros de Las Ventas is a famous bullring in Madrid.

Situated in the barrio of Guindalera in the district of Salamanca, it was inaugurated on June 17, 1931. It has a seating capacity of 25,000 and is regarded as the home of bullfighting in Spain. This bullring was designed by an architect called Espeliú. Its style is Neo-Mudéjar (Moorish) with pottery incrustations. The seats are situated in 10 “tendidos”. The price of the seats depends upon how close they are to the “arena” and whether they are in the sun or the shade (the latter being more expensive). “Las Ventas” is divided in a ring or “arena”, and a group of zones called “patios”. Its architecture is Mudéjar, with pottery representations of the heraldic crests of the different Spanish provinces on them. The “arena” has a diameter of 60 meters. The seating capacity is divided into 10 “tendidos” (group of 27 rows around the “arena”), some of them in the shade and the rest in the sun. The prices of the tickets are more expensive in the shade and in the rows which are nearer to the “arena” or crowned by bleachers, gradins, boxes and covered grandstands. The president of the ‘corrida’ sits in the 10th Tendido. The Royal Box is of outstanding design, with its arabesque architecture [mudejar], a complete bathroom and a lift. Opposite to the Royal Box, in the covered grandstand roof, is the clock. The bullring has five gates, plus three more called “toriles”, from where the bulls enter the arena. The door of “cuadrillas”, between “tendidos” 3 and 4, has access to the horse yard. In this door, the “paseillo” starts and the “picadores”(those who punish the bull with the lance) come out from here to the arena (“suerte de varas”). The dragging door, that leads to the skinning room, is between “tendidos” 1 and 2. The famous “Puerta Grande” (Big Door), also called the Door of Madrid, is between “tendidos” 7 and 8. Going out through this door, especially during the Fiesta of San Isidro, is every bullfighter’s ambition. There is also a chapel and a small sick bay with two operating rooms.

The bullfighting season starts in March and ends in December; bullfights are held every day during the San Isidro Fiesta, and every Sunday or holiday during the season. Bullfights start at 6 or 7pm and last for two to three hours. “Las Ventas” is located in the east of Madrid. It is recommended to use the Metro de Madrid (Las Ventas station is on lines 2 and 5), or any of the city buses which stop next to the bullring.

Official website: www.las-ventas.com

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