Six grand Budapest hotels

From a former stationery factory to Habsburg-era majesty, Ruth Jackson looks at six of the finest places to stay in the Hungarian capital.


Gresham Palace

"This is undoubtedly a very grand Budapest hotel, if not actually the Grand Budapest Hotel Wes Anderson was inspired by when making his recent movie," says Christopher Hooton inThe Independent. Gresham Palace (above) is as central as it gets in the Hungarian capital, right on the Danube river.

The art nouveau architecture is "fabulous" and the hotel is one of the most expensive in the city. But it is "certainly the finest" too, with all the opulence you would expect from a five-star hotel, including a "first-class spa" on the top floor.

From £190,

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Since it opened in 1894, the New York Palace, as the Boscolo hotel used to be known, has been "a favourite haunt of Hungary's literary set", says Cond Nast Traveller magazine. The building suffered during the communist era, but has now been restored to its original Renaissance-style. "Once again, cherubs frolic on frescoed ceilings and chandeliers illuminate its gilt arches."

The bedrooms are spacious and "decorated in muted browns and beige, with plush carpets, ornate mirrors and imported Italian furniture". And there are only 107 of them, so the hotel "still feels personal". It's "perfect for a romantic weekend".

From £103,



This hotel is in "an atmospheric old printing factory, in a sleepy spot in the historic Buda quarter just striking distance from the castle but away from the crowds", says Alicia Miller in The Sunday Times Travel Magazine.

The atmosphere is "high-energy New York meets art gallery gone wild red leather banquettes filled with chattering young things, subway tiling and exposed brick". The bedrooms are all inspired by a different artistic period.

From £95, including breakfast,

Bohem Art Hotel


This former stationery factory is now a boutique hotel with its own art gallery and fresh, modern rooms, says The Independent's Hooton. The hotel supports local artists and "aims to convey the ease of bohemian life', encouraging guests to choose their room based on the paintings". It is located downtown close to the Jewish quarter and a few feet from the river.

From £75,

Hotel Palazzo Zichy


If you prefer something a little more modern, the Hotel Palazzo Zichy could be the place for you. It is 30 minutes walk from Chain Bridge, but that means you can escape the main bustle of the city and enjoy a stay on a "leafy square in a modern house once owned by politico Count Zichy", says The Sunday Times Travel Magazine. "Elaborately carved stone fused with a foyer of slick granite tiling and plenty of glass" give the hotel a modern feel.

A swish lounge area (where you can get free coffee) "hums with young couples", while the spa is perfect "chill-out territory". When booking, ask for floors 1, 3 or 5 if you want views of the square. Alternatively, "floors 2, 4 and 6 face the internal atrium they tend to be quieter".

From £50, including breakfast,

Corinthia Grand Hotel Royal


"Habsburg-era majesty meetsmodern elegance in this carefullyrestored building on Budapest'smain boulevard," says Cond NastTraveller magazine. The CorinthiaGrand Hotel Royal also has asplendid spa, which first openedin 1886 and has now been restoredto its "original splendour". It isenormous, says Stylist magazine,with what must surely rank as "oneof the world's most spectacularindoor swimming pools".

From £103 (

Ruth Jackson-Kirby

Ruth Jackson-Kirby is a freelance personal finance journalist with 17 years’ experience, writing about everything from savings accounts and credit cards to pensions, property and pet insurance.

Ruth started her career at MoneyWeek after graduating with an MA from the University of St Andrews, and she continues to contribute regular articles to our personal finance section. After leaving MoneyWeek she went on to become deputy editor of Moneywise before becoming a freelance journalist.

Ruth writes regularly for national publications including The Sunday Times, The Times, The Mail on Sunday and Good Housekeeping, among many other titles both online and offline.