We must have passed this majestic building many times in the last few days in Budapest, without realizing that this is where we would be staying soon. Hotel Corinthia, Budapest or ‘The Grand Budapest Hotel’ was an impressive building and one which we thought was perhaps originally a palace of some Duke or another.
Corinthia Hotels originally took birth in Malta in the 1960s and slowly but surely expanded to various major cities of Europe and a few in North Africa too. The name Corinthia has since been an epitome of luxury and comfort.
Over 12 decades back Grand Hotel Royal opened its doors to the royalty and aristocracies of Hungary in particular and Europe in general. Even in those days there were over 300 rooms with over 100 of them with private bath. No doubt that private bath was a luxury in that era.
When the owner of Corinthia group set his eyes on Grand Hotel Royal, it was in a dilapidated state. But he could envision resurgence of the aristocratic clientele and so was born Corinthia Budapest.
The beautiful luminaire welcomed us on our entry. The multiple modern light cylinders in a gorgeous design that we had not seen before. The decoration had nothing of the past, except for a couple of corridors had pictures spanning 120 years of history.
Hotel Corinthia Budapest, has 439 rooms including 31 suites and 26 Royal residences. We checked into one of the Royal Suites, overlooking the main road, Erzsébet krt.
The two-roomed suite was well appointed. The basic design was in neutral and it looked very modern in its outlook. Both the living room and the bedroom had huge LED TVs. This worked well for us as many times my taste differed from that of Nisha. 🙂
The rooms were well decorated with beautiful coffee table books and shiny artifacts. Each suite had one full fledged bathroom and one WC. Again they had taken care of the contention between the room guests!
The Nespresso coffee machines and tea making facilities were of superior quality.
The highlight was the turndown service where, everyday there were chocolates of different flavors from Corinthia brand and they were no doubt super delicious.
The high quality bath products made us feel very good. One unique thing was a set of hair styling mouse and spray. Something we have not seen even in many of the luxury hotels.
Just when we thought we had seen the last word in luxury, we were taken on a tour of the Presidential Suite, which was all of 240 Sq Meters! There were rooms after rooms, with fully equipped private office, kitchen and bedrooms for the family members and a huge dining table.
The Brasserie and Atrium with its high vaulted ceiling serve traditional Hungarian and European dishes. The high ceiling gives the feeling of eating on the street while it actually protected you from the elements. There were a lot of vegetarian dishes too. Maybe they had prepared since we had informed them upfront. Bulgur with stuffed pepper and potatoes was something I really liked. The desserts menu was completely delectable with Lemony white chocolate, macrons and minted melon. The Brasseries also doubles up as the breakfast room. Every day there was a dish of the day and we did not have to repeat any dish for breakfast on every day of our stay there.
At Brasserie, Krisztina said, they change their short menu every month and the menu ideas are decided a year in advance. It is fine tuned based on availability of ingredients. If required they source the ingredients from other European countries too , subject to cost and logistic factors.
She was a information treasure about the restaurant. Our award for the best employee surely goes to Krisztina 🙂
When we first heard of the Rickshaw restaurant, we thought it would be Indian. Later in the evening when we actually went there to have our dinner we found it was a Chinese restaurant and one of the best Chinese in Budapest too. There were some vegetarian dishes too. The variety of dishes can be discerned by the size of the menu, a full 14 pages of it. 🙂
Like in Corinthia Prague, the Hotel Corinthia, Budapest also provided us access to the executive lounge located in the first floor overlooking the main street. When we were not roaming around the street of Budapest, one could find us here with a bottle of beer or coffee and some snacks. We could also catch with our work here using the comfortable chairs and tables and good quality WiFi.
Budapest is the wellness capital of Europe. It is only fitting that luxury wellness services being offered to the discerning clients. Right from 12 decades back, the pool consisted of steam baths using the healing water as was being used in all the thermal spas. This aspect has been carried forward after the renovation.
In addition there are several massage treatment starting with foot massage, back, neck, shoulder to full body treatment. Corinthia did not let us down at all. We were in a couple room and the masseuses were very well trained and ensured that our individual requests were also catered to. If you want to gift a spa treatment to your loved ones, you could buy the Royal Spa Gift Certificate.
We both selected our favorite aromatic massage. Once the treatment was over we were so relaxed that we had a simple dinner and retired to bed. We still have not figured if massage before dinner is the right time!
Banquets, Meetings and Events
Even during the days of aristocracy, the erstwhile Grand Hotel Royal was the talk of the town, with the Royal Ballroom being the venue for a Ball, Concerts or even movies. In fact Lumiere Brothers screened their Cinematographie first time in Hungary here in 1896. Movies slowly became popular and by 1916 this was converted to a 1000-seats cinema and named it Royal Apollo.
When here, we ended up imagining how a masquerade ball in the contemporary era would look like in this hall!
While the grand ballroom is in the main building, the state-of-the-art Valletta Exhibition Centre, is across the street joined by bridge that may be either used as a whole un-partitioned 740 SqMtrs or divided into 12 separate smaller halls.
Valetta Conference Halls 1 and 2 is similarly equipped and is located on either side of the Royal Ballroom. Add to that a couple of Board Rooms, you have upwards of a whopping 2500 SqMetres of events’ space.
The hotel Corinthia, Budapest is located in one of the busiest streets with access to public transport. The Circular tram number 4 and 6 is right in front and using that one could have access to most of historic and heritage sites.
It is also a walking distance from the House of Terror, Jewish District, Heroes Square and also famous Ruins Bars, which is a unique phenomenon in Budapest. No doubt we had chosen a perfect hotel to stay in.
Disclaimer: We stayed at the Hotel Corinthia, Budapest at their invitation but the opinions, as always, are own.