Three Crowns to continue international expansion with Spanish launch

Madrid set to become ‘truly global hub for international arbitration’, according to London-based boutique

Madrid bloodua

Three Crowns, the specialist international arbitration boutique, is to open in Madrid. 

The office, which will open in the autumn, will be led by partner Carmen Martinez Lopez, who is relocating from London. It will be the firm's third European office and fifth overall. 

The firm said the move was driven by client demand for its services in both Spain and Latin America, based on several years’ work with clients with a Spanish or Latin America nexus in the energy, renewables, construction, pharmaceutical and telecoms sectors, as well as for state and local governments and state-owned enterprises.   

Founded in 2014, the firm has offices in London, Paris, Washington DC and, following its launch in February last year, Singapore.

Martinez Lopez has handled commercial and investment treaty arbitrations under the rules of all major arbitral institutions, with a commensurate focus on Latin America and Spain. She is familiar with both civil and common law issues and is qualified as a lawyer in Madrid, New York, and England and Wales. 

She is co-editor of the GLP Law Over Borders Arbitration guide with fellow Three Crowns partner, Washington DC-based Liz Snodgrass, which launched online last week.

Martinez Lopez will be joined by counsel Agustín Sanz from the firm’s Washington DC office, along with a team of associates who will also relocate to Spain alongside her. 

A former in-house lawyer for the Argentinian government, Sanz has extensive experience of both international commercial and investment treaty arbitrations, while also having advised sovereign states and international organisations on public international law issues, alongside his academic interests in the US and his native Argentina. 

Martinez Lopez said her return to Spain was “very natural”, noting that Madrid was home to distinguished arbitrators, lawyers, and arbitral institutions; the city is set to host the 27th ICCA Congress in 2026, beating rival bids from Dubai, Kigali and Vancouver. 

Noting the city’s economic and cultural ties with the Americas, Lopez added: “This ideal confluence of factors will ensure Madrid is set to become a truly global hub for international arbitration.”

Georgios Petrochilos KC, executive partner of Three Crowns, said: “Given the growth of our Iberian and Latin American practices, having a dedicated team in Madrid under Carmen’s able stewardship will enable our firm to be even more responsive to its clients’ needs and to continue the expansion of this important part of its offering.” 

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