City breaks always entail a lot of toing and froing, don’t they? Without really knowing the layout of a city I tend to meander around, using the hotel as a base to drop things off/pick things up before embarking on the next expedition. It is for this reason that my shoes are always sensible (and, yes, usually on the ugly side), and my plans tentative: a city is made to be explored at leisure, not rushed around in a frenzied attempt to look at everything while seeing nothing at all.
This opening paragraph is really my attempt to justify the enormous laziness of what is to come. My fifth day in Budapest: lazy, lazy, lazy. It started with a room service breakfast of salad at the Corinthia before my sister and I strolled to The Four Seasons Hotel Gresham Palace for a tour.
The hotel sits on the banks of the Danube opposite the Chain Bridge. The building opened in 1906 as the Gresham Life Insurance Company before becoming apartments and finally the Four Seasons Hotel Budapest in 2004. The 160 rooms and 19 suites are all in keeping with the Art Nouveau theme that runs through the reception, Gresham Restaurant and bar. My sister and I were captivated by the view from the Royal Suite before having our socks knocked off by the spa (unfortunately not literally – our shoes stayed firmly on and our feet un-massaged, though I’ve been told this spa is a must-visit and will be booking in next time)…
The Four Seasons Hotel Gresham Budapest Reception /
The Four Seasons Hotel Gresham Budapest Royal Suite /
The view of the Chain Bridge from the The Four Seasons Hotel Gresham Budapest Royal Suite /
Original detail on the stone of the The Four Seasons Hotel Gresham Budapest /
Original stained glass ceiling/floor at the The Four Seasons Hotel Gresham Budapest /
The Swimming Pool at the Four Seasons Hotel Gresham Budapest /
After that it was time for yet another sit down and a cocktail (or two) on the summer terrace at the Gresham before tucking into some salad and open sandwiches. The terrace is the perfect place to be lazy while watching Budapest go by…
LA BODEGUITA DEL MEDIO /
To burn off a few of the calories consumed (and also to attenuate guilt at having spent the whole day essentially sitting in a hotel) we joined my parents at La Bodeguita Del Medio. A Cuban bar hidden behind an unpromising stone wall on Dob Street, this was abuzz with life and the sound of music, feet stomping on the ground, the ring of wineglasses and clinking of cutlery. After a little dance, we were ready to hit the sheets once more.