The CBA (Círculo de Bellas Artes) is one of the most important private cultural centres in Europe and is characterised by its open attitude towards outstanding innovative artistic trends. It is a multidisciplinary centre with activities ranging from visual art to literature, from science and philosophy to film and the performing arts.

The CBA was founded in 1880 thanks to the efforts of a small group of artists. It is a private, non-profit cultural institution, officially declared a ‘Centre for the Protection of the Fine Arts and of Public Interest’.

During the early years of the 20th century, its directors included important cultur-al figures of the period such as Jacinto Benavente and Carlos Arniches. The young Picasso attended painting classes here and Ramón María del Valle-Inclán frequent-ed its rooms.

The CBA’s current headquarters is a building by Antonio Palacios, the architect who designed many of Madrid’s most characteristic buildings such as Palacio de Comunicaciones, the Banco Central (also on Alcalá street) and Maudes Palace, among others. It was inaugurated by King Alfonso XIII on Monday, November 8, 1926 with an exhibition of paintings by Ignacio Zuloaga in the Goya Room.

Rooftop terrace of the Círculo de Bellas Artes

The rooftop terrace of the Círculo de Bellas Artes affords one of the most spectacular views of Madrid, a unique perspective of the city’s urban layout with the buildings of the Gran Vía avenue just a stone’s throw away. To access the roof-terrace, take the lift in the lobby to the top floor where there is a bar and restaurant. Tickets can be purchased in reception