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Spain's complex capital
Once little more than a Roman way station and Moorish fort, Madrid owes much of its existence to the fickle patronage of the kings of Spain. The city’s transition from sleepy backwater to imperial capital and modern metropolis has been erratic, leaving Madrid with a complex personality. The crowded flea markets of the Rastro, the green spaces of the Retiro, the Habsburg pomp of Los Austrias and the bold vision of the new Reina Sofia museum are just some of the sides of this multi-faceted city.
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