I have never been to Hungary, but I have wanted to go there for a long time. My father’s lineage descends from what was then the Austro-Hungarian Empire, in and around Budapest (at least on my grandfather’s side). But today I have a good reason to travel there, in addition to the rich culture, great sights and the chance to sample chicken paprikash made the Old World way — now there is Budapest’s newest gem, the Aria Hotel, opening March 15, 2015.
The Aria is part of the Library Hotel Collection, with four terrific hotels in New York City. Just as the Library Hotel draws its inspiration from literature and famous authors, so the Aria draws its inspiration from music and famous composers. The seven-story building dates from the 1870s, and it has been lovingly restored by local Budapest architects and interior designers. The Music Garden Courtyard is enclosed entirely by glass! There are 49 rooms plus four parlors, each with its own musical theme: contemporary, opera, jazz, and classical. Free wi-fi, flat-screen TVs, a music library accessible through iPads, and turndown service with chocolates included! The location is in the city center, next to the famous St. Stephen’s Basilica.
Here’s a small preview of some of the gorgeous rooms available at the Aria:
Many rooms have either a private terrace or balcony.There are a number of restaurants, including the elegant Stradivari, but you can choose to eat at Aria’s bars, lounges, on the rooftop garden, on the terrace — or even in the Teatro Aria, where a variety of musical performances and videos will be shown. A wonderful breakfast is complimentary with your stay, as is an afternoon wine and cheese selection. Visit the pool, Turkish bath, fitness center or spa; it’s all here!
There are several specials going on right now, including the “Getting to Know You” package at 195 Euros per night (about $240 at today’s exchange rate) if you book prior to the hotel’s March grand opening. That is a very attractive price for what I am confident will be incredible service, beautiful surroundings, and terrific value. I will close this post with a great night shot of Budapest. Note: all photos come from the Aria Hotel’s website.