Welcome to another iteration of our 5 Cities – 5 Locals – 5 Unique Tips series, where we discover and go through some of our most interesting articles across our whole network of (currently) 67 cities.
This time we started off composing this here article with a couple of “retro” spots, noticed the pattern and asked ourselves “hey, why not just make them all retro?”
So, there you have it: dust off your gramophones, take out your grandma’s best china and buckle up for a blast from the past – we’re doing ancient history here!
Catch a glimpse of old Warsaw through fin de siècle technology
This curious visual medium, also known as the Kaiserpanorama, used to have its little niche some time between the invention of photography and cinema. Created in 1905, the Fotoplastikon installation in Warsaw is one of the oldest surviving rigs of its kind. The images displayed were made using a kind of dual-lens camera that ended up creating a 3-D stereoscopic experience similar to our childhood’s View-Master, only decades earlier.
Local Magda explains its use: “it shows not only old Warsaw (the world from before the 2nd World War) but also historical scenes (in cooperation with the Museum of the Warsaw Rising) and, more unexpectedly, close-ups of biological phenomena, photos of traveling through Poland by bus and many more.”
There are some scenes from outside Poland as well.
Watch a film in the comfort of your convertible in Madrid
’50s America has had its firm grip on popular imagination for a few years now – from rock & roll and surf music to American burger diners, milkshake bars and classic make-up styles, the era seems to be trendier than ever. It has to be said: there is a certain allure in the confident, bold, optimistic futurism of that period, the belief they had back then that the only way to go was up, forward, and through the shopping mall. Or it could also be that things were just stylish. In that spirit, Autocine in Madrid provides the whole package. Let us allow local César do the talking here:
If you ever wanted to feel like John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John at the drive-in cinema and have never been to one, now you have the chance to go to the largest drive-in cinema in Europe. Autocine Madrid can fit up to 350 cars in 25,000 square meters but is much more than just a cinema, you can also enjoy of food and music. You can watch the premiers, classic movies and concerts.
Grab a snack before the movie at any or the foodtrucks or enjoy of some American favorites at their diner. You can also do it during the movie if you prefer, they have speakers all over the place…
Follow the abandoned 1980s bobsleigh track in Sarajevo
Sarajevo, Former Yugoslavia, host city of the 1984 Winter Olympic games, and where it only snowed one day before the whole thing started, apparently. Three decades plus later (but doesn’t it seem like more?) the bobsleigh track constructed only to be used a couple of times still remains today, only with a completely different aura surrounding it: a symbol of another time, it’s a cement souvenir that’s actually filling up with life the more time passes, both spray-painted and plant-based.
Local Samra fills us in on the route through nature itself: “You can get there by cab or on foot (hour and a half’s walk)! It’s a wonderful and very interesting place in the middle of the forest! It’s very long and you can take a walk up till the end and visit the old viewing point where you could have come to by cable car before the war. It’s also all covered with interesting graffiti art! The surroundings are really amazing.. Beautiful flowers and fresh air will make your walk unforgettable!”
Pay your respects to the world’s deceased animal companions in Paris
Turns out Steven King wasn’t being all that creative with Pet Semetary… There is a far more innocuous and touching real pet cemetery in Paris: Le Cimetière des Chiens (et Autres Animaux Domestiques) – literally the Dog (and Other Domestic Animal) Cemetery. It has been giving space for humans to properly mourn for and bury their favourite friends belonging to other species for more than a century – not limited to cats and dogs, mind you, but also including horses, monkeys, lions, even fish.
Local Spotter Fred delves into the mystical allure of this otherworldly realm: it’s “located in a very peaceful and beautiful area along the river Seine. Reading the pets’ names, their owners’ short epitaphs (some of them in English) is quite entertaining, and there are actually beautiful graves, showing how some people can be more attached to animals than to human beings. The place also hosts a shelter for abandoned -living- cats, which brings life to this area where death reigns.”
Take your dolls in need of care to the doctor in Lisbon
Hospital de Bonecas has been repairing, or treating, patients in Lisbon’s Praça da Figueira since 1830. As children have been increasingly playing in digital imaginary worlds, this equal parts cute and creepy (okay, perhaps a bit more creepy!) shop is getting more retro by the day.
Local Nuno gives us the inside scoop: “they fix mainly dolls: a head or an arm missing and you know where you’re going with that broken Barbie or your once brave but now dismembered Action Man. They’ll do everything they can to take care of your child’s “patients” and in two or three days, they’ll be fully recovered and 100% fine. Plush toys, doll houses, fantasy costumes and carnival outfits, miniatures… everything you need for your kids dream world or your own wonderland (not judging here).
There’s also a small but very unique and interesting museum on the upper floor that has everything you would imagine belonged to a Doll’s Hospital: shelves with broken legs, heads separated from their bodies (creepy?), eyes, hands… even the “operation table” where all toys are healed by the “doctors”. It’s the place for all broken dolls and toys of Lisbon’s desperate children.”
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