- Hungary -
The Boscolo Hotel was originally built in 1892 and has had a bit of a chequered past but was fully restored in 2001. It is a beautiful hotel and residence. I stayed in one of the apartments for 5 months while working in Budapest and thoroughly enjoyed it. It’s located on the edge of the old Jewish Quarter which is my favourite part of the city, full of great bars and restaurants and quirky little shops, it’s a fantastic place to wander around soaking up the local flavor. It’s only a short walk to the Opera House and from there another 15 minutes to the river Danube and the centre of this great city. There are plenty of taxis, buses and the underground railway right outside the front door and a mainline train station is a ten minute walk away.
The building itself is an architectural explosion of different styles that somehow seem to all work together quite well, the sort of thing they often try to do in Las Vegas but never seem to get right.
The Boscolo also houses the world reknowned New York Café, originally frequented by Hungary’s literary elite, it is a stunning café where you can sit with a coffee and people watch for hours. There is no shortage of good places to stay in Budapest but if I ever go back I’d be happy to stay here again, no worries.
I stayed here for about a month and found it very comfortable and relaxed. It’s very close to the centre of the city which is easy to walk to but there’s a subway stop just across the street so you can be pretty much anywhere in no time. There’s not a lot in the way of amenities but it’s a residence rather than a hotel so there’s a well-equipped kitchen with pretty much everything you’ll need and some very good restaurants within a ten-minute walk. There’s a very decent Italian on the corner that will deliver to your room but most of the time I just went to the restaurant as it was so good and the staff there are Italian and very funny. The Izabella is a no-nonsense, comfortable and pleasant hotel that is really more for a long term stay than just a weekend but I highly recommend it.