Budapest is a young city where everything is booming: gentrification is in full swing while young Hungarians aged 25-35 seem to be serious about transforming their city. Destroyed buildings are becoming new restaurants and bars, abandoned factories – art hubs with trendy musicians and artist renting studios, while designer boutiques offer the most extravagant stuff ever.
Hotel building and cafe Gerlóczy look attractive in any weather. In summer, the terrace is surrounded by greenery and is lighted by multicolored lamps in the evening. In winter, stingy nature proves the building's elegance and the plaids on chairs make the coziest square of old Pest even cozier. The corner building Gerlóczy fits Kamermayer tér with all its guests squinting and drinking morning coffee, reading newspapers and putting goose paste on fresh bread. The monument to the first mayor of Budapest Károly Kamermayer stands with its back to the cafe and looks like a figurehead of a magnificent ship. You feel no hurry here, you just want to read a newspaper with a cup of coffee, have a lunch and listen to the singing of a tiresome canary.
TheGardenStudio is an exposition of Hungarian designers. The shop's objective is to give unknown designers and companies a place where they could display and sell their works. You will not find many clothes in a light room looking out across Kamermayer square. It is more attractive for women. Clothes are rather expensive, but everything looks cosmic and is mostly in a single copy. Besides, TheGardenStudio promotes itself as an atelier, so you can have something designed particularly for you.
The studio was opened by Tomcsányi Dóri and her husband. Dóri has her own clothes brand Dori Tomcsanyi. The brand is becoming more popular. People liked the last silk collection with printed plants. When in TheGardenStudio, it is worth seeing hand-knitted clothes Kele Clothing and nice accessories and bags YKRA.
Stylish, not expensive new clothes and vintage are all mixed here. It is easy to spend an hour or two in Szputnyik, digging in clothes of different ages and style. For example, you can visit the place before going to a party. A tailcoat, boots and shirt with Tom and Jerry for a man and a hoopskirt dress, hat with a veil and big trinkets for a girl. It is a world of boundless imagination here. For your convenience, clothes are tagged, so that you could see new, used and vintage items.
Mahung Biokocsma is a tiny stall with fruits and vegetables behind the National Museum and near the Hungarian Radio. The stall is run by an ardent propagandist of local farmer's products Peter. The plate over the stall displays a number of amazing fruit and vegetable combinations for smoothie with spices and without them. Bright names, such as Green Hornet or Red Commander are used for smoothies of beet, orange juice and walnut, and of pomegranate with banana and apple accordingly. In summer, you will find perfect a lemonade made of cucumber with mint and lime called City Freshness. Peter can mix any particular cocktail for you.
Budapest Bike - Bubi
In April 2014, a public bike program Bubi was launched in Budapest. Bike rent stations are spreading the city. It is planned to provide 76 stations for 1100 bikes.
The first half hour is free. A 24-hour pass costs HUF 500, a year pass - HUF 18 900. However, the system is not that simple, since there are a bunch of tariffs and conditions. When renting a public bike, your card will be charged a deposit of HUF 25 000. Bikers must follow traffic rules and are not allowed to drive pavements. You should also have a reflective stripe on your clothes, so that motorists could see you. It is not allowed to consume alcohol in Hungary if you are going to drive. So if you want to ride a bike, you have to be absolutely sober. Each station has the city's parking map. While the system is being improved, you can buy a Bubi pass in the office at Rumbach Sebestyen utca 19-21 in Pesta or just use the website.
Throughout their married life, Peter and Irene Ludwig amassed an immense art collection consisting of more than twelve thousand pieces of art. Many artworks were given to different museums all over the world, including Ludwig múzeum in Budapest.
Here you will find works by Picasso, Warhol and artists from Eastern Europe and Russia. Special attention is given to artworks prior to 1960. Museum attendants will gladly tell you about each piece of work and its value as well as about Hungarian artists, such as Imre Bukta, István Csákány, Tamás Kaszás, Ádám Kokesch and others.
Unlike other city museums, Ludwig museum is not located in the centre. Instead, it has vast spaces in the so called Palace of Arts. Similar to Centre Pompidou in Paris, a library was opened in Ludwig museum with books on Hungarian art and world art after 1945 with an emphasis on artists from Eastern and Central Europe.
The most pleasant way to get here is to take tram 2 and 21 and drive from the centre along the Danube.
This trendy gastropub is a real paradise for meat eaters and offers a huge assortment of Spanish and Catalan ham, Hungarian salami and snacks with artichoke cream, foie gras, goose cracklings and paste. SonkaArcok is located on a picturesque university square. You can always grab a sandwich here made of fresh bread and the above ingredients. The menu was created by a prominent Hungarian chef Tamás Bereznay, the author of several cook books worshipped by housewives who read his regular column in a cook magazine. People drink here lavander and cucumber lemonade, plum wine and sangria.
Erzsébet tér is a square in the very centre of Pest. In summer, it is a beehive of activity with only two hours before the dawn during which no skateboards clatter, no crowd buzzes and no glasses clink in the fröccs bar (where wine with soda is served). At this time, you won't see hazardous fire shows near the bushes and Michael Jackson fans singing near his spontaneous memorial. No stream of live music comes from Akvarium club.
Jazz and rock festivals usually take place here. A flea market is organized every last Sunday of the month. A small part of a former bus station was preserved and now it accommodates design shops and the above mentioned Fröccsterasz. Erzsébet (Elizabeth in Magyar) is in this case the famous extravagant Sissi, wife of Ferenz Joseph.
After World War II, Budapest became Soviet, and the regime did its job. The square was renamed after Stalin and then after Engels when Stalin died. In 1990, things resumed its natural course here and the square breathed again. In the middle of Erzsébet tér you will find the Danube fountain by Miklós Ybl who took a hand in design of Andrássy út and pompous building of Hungarian Opera House. Some hooligans always spray paint the female figures in the lower bowl but they still look very beautiful. Seminaked beauties symbolize the Danube tributaries: Sava, Tisa and Drava. At the top of the fountain you may see a bearded man looking like Poseidon. This is Poseidon in the flesh.