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Friday, July 10, 2020

Le Méridien Budapest

by Joanna Andrews

© Shutterstock
© Le Méridien Budapest
© Le Méridien Budapest

It is nearly a year since the Al Habtoor Group added Le Méridien Budapest to its portfolio. Joanna Andrews takes a look at what the historic five-star hotel has to offer…

Le Méridien Budapest has earned its place on the world map as a top tourism destination, and it is easy to see why. The hotel is ideally located in the heart of Budapest just a few steps from Hungary’s famous Danube River - one of the United Nations Organisation for Education, Science and Culture's  World Heritage sites. It is up there with the likes of Vatican City in Rome and Angkor Archaeological Park in Cambodia.

The hotel has the unique advantage of being minutes from exquisite shopping, the lively business district and the city’s Old Town. But if you don’t want to go out, there are some luxurious shops on the ground level of the hotel to keep you busy.

Once you walk through the doors of this old-world establishment, you can easily think you have stepped back in time. The hotel epitomizes luxury and style and literally takes your breath away.

The architecture is impressive; fine elegance is intermingled with classical nobility.  Just some of the architectural characteristics in this stone covered building include wrought iron grilled balconies and arched windows.

Le Méridien Budapest opened its doors in October 2000. The building itself is a protected monument with a historical past. It was built between 1914-1918 to host the Italian Adria Insurance Company, hence it was formerly known as ‘The Adria Palace’.

It is hard to believe today that ‘The Adria Palace’ was badly damaged by a bomb during World War II and was partly burned down. Reconstruction took place between 1949-50. After that it became the headquarters of the Budapest Police (until 1997).

NAME DROPPING

The majority of Le Méridien Budapest’s guests come from the US, UK, Germany, Austria, France, Italy and Spain, according to the hotel, and it is a firm favourite with many well-known faces, including former US President George W Bush, Henry Kissinger, Prince Philippe of Belgium, former french first lady Carla Bruni as well as formula one drivers David Coulthard and Jenson Button.

Other well-known names who have stayed here are singers Cher, Pink, 50 Cents, Placido Domingo, Zucchero, and Andrea Bocelli.

THE ROOMS

Le Méridien Budapest features 192 elegant guest rooms and 26 suites, many of them overlooking Erzsébet Square and the St. Stephen’s Basilica – two of the most famous sights of the city. Erzsébet Square was named after Queen Elizabeth in 1857.

Superior rooms are comfortable and spacious with classically elegant interiors. The picture windows overlook either the Erzsébet Square or the quiet Deak Ferenc pedestrian street. All rooms are equipped with a desk and a comfortable seating area, either with king-size or twin beds. The elegantly designed marble bathrooms have separate bathtub and shower.

Deluxe rooms are more spacious than Superior rooms with additional office facilities for full working comfort.

Excutive rooms are located at the corner of the building. These bright, luxurious rooms with additional comfortable seating area continue the classical elegance of the interiors.

Business suites are attractive corner rooms with classically elegant interiors. The suites, overlooking the quiet pedestrian street or Deak Square, offer large lounge areas with sofa and armchair plus separate guest WC. The elegantly designed bathrooms have separate bathtub and shower.

Executive suites are located on the 8th floor with private terrace and easy access to the Health and Fitness Centre and the board meeting rooms. The suites, decorated in the hotel's hallmark style of classic elegance, offer large lounge areas with sofa and armchair plus separate guest WC. The elegantly designed bathrooms have separate bathtub and shower.

Diplomatic suites are the largest and most luxurious of all. They are situated on the top floor and feature a private terrace with beautiful panoramic views of the city, a spacious lounge and dining area that comfortably seats eight people - and there is even a private kitchenette.

WHERE TO EAT

When it comes to food and beverage, you are spoiled for choice at Le Méridien Budapest. French cuisine awaits you at ‘Le Bourbon Restaurant’, where Chef Laurent Vandenameele shares his passion for local products; or you can experience the ‘Adria Palace Bar’ preserved in its original historic beauty offering comfort and relaxation during daylight hours and a lively jazz band after 8pm; or you can sample the best and sit back in large white sofas and armchairs at ‘The White Lounge’; In Spring and Summer you can dine at ‘La Terrasse’, an ideal location for people watching in front of the hotel on the Fashion Street.

Le Méridien Budapest is undoubtedly a must-see destination.

RATES per night*  
Superior room: EUR 429
Deluxe room: EUR 459
Executive room: EUR 529
Business suite: EUR 749
Executive suite: EUR 1,099
Diplomatic suite: EUR 3,000
   
* Excluding taxes and breakfast  
* Depending on the season  

 

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