13 feb. 2018


Have you ever stopped to think about how to use your time efficiently? We’ve found the answer in SIELE (Servicio Internacional de Evaluación de la Lengua Española).  In 2017, the Conferencia de rectores de universidades españolas (CRUE), formed by 76 Spanish universities (public and private) and the Association of Language Centres in Higher Education (ACLES) included SIELE as a certificate accepted by the Commission of Accreditation for Spanish as a foreign language.  As well as this, it’s also a valid certificate to enter the Spanish university system.  

Here at AIL, we want to tell you the advantages of taking the SIELE exam and we want to inform you about the uses of your SIELE certificate once you have achieved the qualification.  


If you are foreign, and you’re planning to study in Spain, you’ll need a certificate to demonstrate your proficiency in Spanish. With SIELE you’ll be able to choose the exact day that you’d like to take your exam and within 3 weeks, you’ll have your qualification and online certificate, recognising your Spanish level.  


After the SIELE Global exam, once you’ve received your qualification, you’ll have access to your results at the click of a button and the verification of your level will automatically appear through a code that will be sent out by SIELE.

With this code, you’ll be able access your level to provide it for a work interview for example, giving it to those responsible in the selection process so that they can verify your certification. 


In terms of international recognition, more than 75 institutions worldwide are associated with SIELE and thus support the quality and validity of the certificate, assisting further with job hunting or when entering the university system. 


When the time comes to prepare for the exam, there is no pressure to pass or fail, as you’ll still have a certificate that recognises your level at the time you took the exam.  Aside from this, on selecting the type of exam (SIELE Global or independent modules) you can adapt it to be related to the requirements for your job search or university application. 

5. COST  

A SIELE Global exam costs 155 euros and the independent modules cost as low as 55 euros.  AIL Madrid students will have a 10% discount.

AIL Madrid is an authorised SIELE exam centre, that offers daily announcements for taking the exam.  For more information, contact us on hola4@ailmadrid.com or go to our website.  

12 feb. 2018

What makes Madrid so green?

Caixa Forum’s living wall

Madrid is a fantastic destination for any student of Spanish, but few people know that aside from its fame for football and climate it also boasts fantastic green credentials. According to the European Green City Index, which ranks cities by many factors, Madrid ranks at number 12, one place after London and nine places ahead of Dublin.

According to the Madrid City Council, 35% of the city is public greenspace, compared to just 13% of Amsterdam (Statistics Netherlands/TNO) or 27% of New York (New York City Department of City Planning Land Use). Large, open, green spaces like Casa de Campo (1,722 ha) contribute to the amount of green space in the city but over the years it’s been increased due to initiatives like the Urban Garden project in which members of the public were encouraged to turn roof terraces, patios and vacant lots into green space. It is no wonder the project has been successful, as Madrid receives 2769 hours of sunshine a year so it’s not difficult for the city’s trees and plants to thrive.

The roof terrace at La Casa Encendida

Madrid has 43 parks that make up the majority of its green space. Over the past few years, the area of parkland in the city has increased significantly due to the expansion of the recreation area beside the Manzares River. The Spaniards as a whole lean towards an outdoor lifestyle and the banks of the Manzanares quickly became one of the most popular spots to go jogging or cycling after work while the urban beach near Puente Segovia is one of the locals’ favourite places to take a break from the heat in summer.

Puente Segovia

If the green space in the city isn’t enough, the Sierra Guadarrama natural park is less than an hour by bus and it’s perfect for a day trip. In winter, it’s great for skiing and in summer there are plenty of mountain pools to cool off.

However, Madrid’s environmental initiatives are not limited to green space and park land. Like many of Europe’s major cities the government is taking action to reduce pollution; the most talked about plan among madrileños at the moment is the pedestrianisation of Gran Vía, one of the busiest roads in the centre of Madrid. The Gran Vía project will join the Preciados and Fuencarral shopping areas together and reduce pollution and traffic in the city centre.

As well as the Gran Vía project, the electric bike-sharing programme is still flourishing since it began in 2014, with bike stations on every street corner and the addition of 33 cycle paths to coincide with the system. In addition, the Mayor has announced plans to have all diesel fuelled cars banned from the city by 2025.

Electric bike-sharing programme 

Here at AIL Madrid, a Spanish school that has welcomed thousands of students to our city, we show a great interest in Madrid’s green project and nothing makes us prouder of our city than its long-term environmental plan.

6 oct. 2017

What's left of the Movida Madrileña

¡Madrid Nunca Duerme! Tourists and madrileños alike would agree that this saying is still as relevant today, as it was in a time when it typified the social and cultural freedom of La Movida in 1977. If you too want to experience a Madrid that never sleeps, here are a few post-movida locations that have survived the test of time!

Resultado de imagen de malasaña movida

Madrid is not short of culture; but why not go off the beaten track and see Juan Carlos Argüello’s graffiti, which is hidden around the Malasaña walls, where La Movida first became known.  One of his most famous works, ‘El Muelle’ is located in Calle de La Montera.

If it is a low-key drink and a bite to eat that you are after, look no further than ‘La Bobia’, an original Movida bar turned Sidería! You will find it in the trendy barrio of La Latina, where the young hang out against a post-movida style backdrop.  In fact, the original ‘La Bobia’ bar featured in Almodovar’s film, ‘Laberinto de Pasiones’, so there is no better place to re-live the Movida atmosphere than at this buzzing bar.

Resultado de imagen de malasaña

For those looking for somewhere that will lead you into the early hours of the morning, we suggest partying at ‘Madrid Me Mata’, a bar that prides itself upon its Movida influence.  You will notice the hipster murials that surround the young crowd that flock there, adding to the edgy ambience.  For a more casual option head to ‘Free Way’ or ‘Tupperware’, where you can get to grips with music from the Nacho Pop or Dinerama era.

Alternatively, to experience the true essence of La Movida Madrileña in a more logical fashion, you can take a guided tour by night around the district. 

Below are a few of our favourite post-movida hotspots:

  • La Bobia; Calle de San Millán, 3, 28012 Madrid; 917 37 60 30
  • Madrid Me Mata; Calle Corredera Alta de San Pablo, 31, 28004 Madrid; 609 84 75 04
  • Free Way; Calle Corredera Alta de San Pablo, 17, 28004 Madrid; 915 22 75 82
  • Tuppeware; Calle Corredera Alta de San Pablo, 26, 28004 Madrid

26 sept. 2017

¡European Day of Languages!

On the 26th September, we celebrate the annual European Day of Languages At AIL Madrid  we believe that this day is the perfect way to promote the cultural diversity of Europe, and most importantly, to encourage everyone to get involved and learn a language!

We encourage you to use European Day of Languages as an incentive to start studying the most spoken language in Europe, ¡Spanish!  You will discover new friendships as well as developing a skill that will benefit you in the business world.

The hardest thing about learning a new language, is adapting to phrases that are specific to the country.  In Spanish, there are thousands of sayings that can only be acquired with practise and time!

Therefore, to celebrate European Day of Languages at AIL Madrid , we are challenging students and teachers alike to come forward with their favourite colloquial phrases or sayings and share them with us!
To find out more and to share your own diverse phrases, go to our Facebook page!

If you’re learning Spanish (or want to start) we recommend following us on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram because we’re always publishing free Spanish learning resources, exercises, videos and podcasts for all levels, from beginner to advanced.

Want Spanish classes? Get in contact with us
Call + 34 914 35 48 01

24 ago. 2017

Madrid's terraces - The best in Summer

In Madrid you can enjoy some cold cañas on a terrace every time of the year, but admit it, you prefer summer ;) Hot weather came to stay (for a long time), so, what better than sitting on a terrace to enjoy the 'fresquito'. Check out the list below with our favourite terraces:

- El Jardín secreto de Salvador Bachiller: two steps away from Puerta del Sol, and just a few meters from Gran Vía, you will discover a fairy tale in the middle of the city. Full of trees, plants, colorful flowers and rich nature smells, you can have a nice cup of coffee or a delicious cold mojito. You can find it in: Calle Montera 37.

- El Paracaidista: Restaurant, shop, bar and even cinema! This 'concept' store has it all! You can either watch a film, go shoping, have a nice cold cocktail or chill in the big terrace they have on the roof. Located in Malasaña and just next to Metro Tribunal is a great way to scape the routine.

- Terraza Atenas: Next to Madrid Río, this terrace is great to chill in a cool park with the best views. Don't miss out on any of the events that they do during the summer. Another great way to escape the hot weather and enjoy a nice and refreshing afternoon.

- The Hat Madrid: Cheap and near by Plaza Mayor. This beautiful terrace has everything: free WiFi, air conditioning and cold beer.

- El Patio del Fisgón: Located in the famous neighbourhood of Salamanca, you will find the msot modern dishes combined with the best cocktails. Suitable for summer with big windows and for winter, warmed with it's chimeney. You will love this cozy place!

1 ago. 2017

¡Veranos de la Villa! - August: hot weather & refreshing plans

We are so lucky to be able to support such a wide array of events this summer! Join us to support our local and international artists as we attend their unforgettable events. With such variety, there are bound to be many experiences that you would be sorry to miss!

António Zambujo 
Tuesday, August 1st

Do you hear that music? It´s so good that it has to be António Zambujo! Come see his free concert that celebrates music from around the world with his cosmopolitan sound. The doors open at 21:00 and takes place in the Auditorium inside of Lineal del Manzanares Park. 

Puppets Night! 
Wednesday and Thursday, August 2nd & 3rd

Tonight, in the Theatre of Títeres inside of Retiro Park, there will be a few puppet and marionette shows that are sure to make you smile. Rodorín and José Antonio López Parreño prepared a dramatic and funny story for us from 20:00 to 21:00. Afterwards, from 22:00 to 23:00, Mr. Barti and Alex Marioneta have another piece for us about the life of a prodigy marionette. The young puppet is a prodigy pianist who plays eccentric music and eventually reached fame due to his passion for rock and flamenco. These shows are the perfect night out for a family because they make people laugh, regardless of age.

Urban Slackline 
Friday, August 4th

Do you want to have fun but you get tired of the usual activities? How lucky that there is a slackline competition on August 4 from 17:00 to 23:30. Watch, practice, or compete in the slackline events that always impress the audience. The open workshops are from 18:00 to 20:00, so if you want to participate, plan the day accordingly. Tickets are free and the event will be at Pablo Ruiz Picasso Square.

Madrid Suena #2 
Saturday, August 5th

From 11:00 - 21: 00 you can enter a pool party with several DJs and live music groups. For only 4,50€, enjoy club music, house music and also the blackest rhythms such as Jazz, disco, funk, and soul. Everything will happen at the Municipal Sports Center Francos Rodríguez, but the question is - will you go there?

Valgeir Sigurdsson 
Tuesday, August 8th

If you like classical and contemporary music, come to the Auditorium inside of Las Cruces Park at 21:00 to listen to this exceptional music. The event is free and there is no doubt that you will enjoy their profoundly northern music.

Night of Shooting Stars 
Thursday, August 10th

This day represents the intellectual and scientific side of Madrid with an astronomy exposition. They especially chose this day because our planet is passing the 109/Swift Tuttle´s orbit; a comet that we only get to see every 133 years! This means that this is our grand opportunity to see it and learn a bit about space too. From 20:30 to 22:00 there will be workshops of various astronomical themes and from 22:00 to 1:00 there will be telescope observations! There are also some notable guests that will host short lectures about what you should be looking for with your telescope as well as other astronomical topics. The whole event is free and occurs in the Auditorium inside the Enrique Tierno Galván Park.

Enrique Tierno Galván Park

 Milonga Junto Night with the Royal Quintet 
Wednesday, August 16th

In Berlin Park there will be a phenomenal night of music and dance. The free event is from 21:00 to 24:00 and celebrates the tango with live music from the Royal Quartet. There will also be professional tango dancers and a large crowd of people dancing the night away.

Film, Music and Magic: with Victor Chomón II 
Thursday, August 17th

Victor Chomón the Second is one of the most famous silent movie directors of all time. Responsible for classics like The Electric Hotel (1908), Bizarr Symphony (1090) and The Red Spectrum (1907); we celebrate the master with a day full of his movies, accompanied by live music. Kevin Toma has designed the experimental music and we are very proud to present this free event. It will be held at the cross of Bravo Murillo Street and Cea Bermúdez Street with the festivities beginning at 22:00. See you there!

Submerge Yourself 
Saturday, August 19th

Come to the Auditorium at the lower gardens of the Segovia Bridge to submerge yourself in the pleasures of contemporary dance. Losdedae, a Madrileñan dance group, will perform at 19:00, 20:30, and at 22:00. We have heard that they are incredible due to their choreographer, Chevi Muraday, who won the National Dance Prize in 2006. The tickets are free so there´s no reason to miss out!

Circus Soirée #3 
Sunday, August 20th

Third Circus Evening for the whole family:
Twisting the Balance / Political Circus presents once again, in the context of the Circus Evenings, its special creation for Veranos de la Villa: Future animal, a project of Leire Mesa and Rolando San Martin for which the creators have carried out an investigation Previous on each space and the inhabitants of its proximities. From the bowels of the circus, Future animal asks about evolution and involution: are we going towards a more harmonious world with nature or do we evolve towards our most animal part?

Block Party 
Friday, August 25th

 Night dedicated to new sports that are already part of the landscape of our cities, such as parkour or tricking, associated with hip-hop culture. Parkour consists of acrobatic movements through urban spaces overcoming obstacles such as unevenness, fences, gaps, heights ..., without any other means than the impulse of one's own body. Tricking is a flat floor acrobatics practice that combines sports gymnastics, martial arts and break-dance movements, with an aesthetic based on deadly jumps, kicks and turns.

Exhibitions, workshops, DJ's of urban music and concerts.

Christina Rosenvinge 
Wednesday, August 30th

A mix of electronic and pop music. Coming from the most famous New York nightclubs to Madrid, Christina will amaze everyone with her unique style.
 All this will take place in Parque Quinta de Los Molinos, a park full of green spots to lay down and enjoy music.

                                            More details at Veranos de la Villa