GRAND HOTELS ABOUND IN BUDAPEST
A unique art nouveau landmark, the recently transformed Four Seasons Hotel Gresham Palace Budapest combines historical elegance with ultra-modern comforts (in their web site's words). This custom Preciosa chandelier, with hand-shaped crystal leaves, is illuminated by 76 hidden bulbs.
Wherever I go I visit the fine hotels. I think it was my mother who taught me that hotels are a must sight to see in any town even if you don't have to use the bathrooms. Built in 1906, Gresham Palace has been reborn, thanks to Miklós Szenkirályi and his team of wrought-iron specialists, silversmiths, stained-glass makers, ceramists, mosaicists and craftspeople. While it's solidly contemporary you still know you're in Budapest.
The bar looks just right for an early evening drink.
And this is the Boscolo Hotel. The eclectic building was constructed between 1892 and 1894 by the architects Alajos Hauszmann, Flòris Korb and Kàlmàn Giergl, for the Hungarian offices of the New York Life Insurance Company, by transposing the old styles of Greek, Latin, Renaissance and Baroque together in prodigiously-creative Art Nouveau.
I prefer it as a hotel, I must say. In all its Easter finery!