"Which side of the Danube would you like to be on, Buda or Pest?" Peter, the patron saint of bookings, asked, when he was planning our itinerary. He had never been to Budapest, and it had been more than a decade since my last visit, so we sat down together at the computer and poured over the map of the city on Google Earth.
"Our hotel in Budapest has to be centrally-located, but in a quieter location away from the noise of city traffic," I explained. "According to the weather forecast, it's going to be 30 or 40 degrees C when we're there, so we had best look for a place with a pool," I added. "Okay," he said, "How about the Adina?"
On first glance, the Adina seemed a little bit further away from the CBD than I might have liked - although, admittedly, it is hard to gauge distances on a screen. That said, we have stayed in TFE Hotels previously, at The Rocks and Surry Hills in Sydney, and in the Adelaide CBD (all of which were excellent). With this in mind, I knew that the Adina Apartment Hotel in Budapest would be more-than-adequate for our needs.
Browsing the hotel's web site and an assortment of images on Google confirmed my thoughts. It looked and sounded great. The deal-breakers being that we would have the luxury of a self-contained, serviced apartment for over a week; as well as being able to enjoy facilities such as the lap-swimming pool, sauna, spa and gymnasium.
Having spent several weeks criss-crossing the United Kingdom, (where we'd stayed in a series of hotels old and new, mostly with, dare I say, pokey little rooms), Peter and I arrived at the Adina in Budapest. We were busting to spread our wings, so you can imagine our delight when we opened the door and stepped into a spacious (huge!) one-bedroom apartment. Best of all, the property was stylishly furnished with neutral decor, and it was immaculately clean.
The one-bedroom king or twin apartments at the Adina range from 50-70 square metres in size and include a full-sized kitchen with hotplates, oven and dishwasher; generous lounge and dining area with a study corner; a large balcony with great views of the surrounding architecture; bathroom with a bathtub and separate shower cubicle, as well as a laundry tub and washing machine/clothes drier tucked inside a wardrobe.
A bonus is that there's a separate WC (or toilet, for those too young to understand what I mean). And there was a flat-screen TV in both the living room and the bedroom, meaning that we could lie in bed and catch up on the evening news.
Having a full-sized kitchen enabled us to prepare breakfasts, and most of our evening meals on site, rather than dining out every night. And, with a fresh food market just a five-minute walk from the hotel, this travelling cook couldn't really want for more. The hotel also offers a convenient valet service, and will stock the refrigerator with groceries on request.
We enjoyed restful sleeps during our stay, thanks to the quiet surroundings of the hotel, and we were not disturbed by housekeeping at any time. In fact, on day one we advised the staff that there was no need for them to make the bed or clean the kitchen and bathrooms after us, as we were more than happy to do that for ourselves. Although they checked with us whenever they saw us in the hallway, the housekeeping ladies were good enough to oblige with our wishes and simply exchanged fresh towels for used ones, as needed.
Other features of the Adina Apartment Hotel Budapest...
When you've been sightseeing all day, one of the best ways to stretch out and loosen up the body is to swim a few laps. In addition to the 17-metre swimming pool at the Adina in Budapest, there's also an outdoor terrace, and a sauna/steam bath and jacuzzi spa, together with a well-equipped gym. An attendant greets you at the entrance, notes your room number and hands over a robe and pool towels.
During our stay, we made good use of the paved courtyard gardens, which provided a quiet retreat in which I could sit and write my journal while Peter read his book. The hotel's bar is within easy access, making the garden the perfect heaven at "beer o'clock". As with the rest of the property, everything here is immaculately maintained.
Tea and coffee is provided free-of-charge in one part of the hotel's spacious lobby, which leads out the central courtyard. Breakfast is served in a dining room just around the corner (for an additional cost). Parking is available in the underground garage and costs around 4,100 HUF ($18.50 AUD) per night per vehicle.
Hotel Manager, Angéla Gergye, and her team go out of their way to ensure that guests at the Adina receive the utmost in service and attention. Peter and I were made to feel welcome at all times, and we will most certainly stay at the hotel again in the future.
Good things to be discovered nearby...
For those wishing to forage for food, step outside the front entrance of the Adina, turn left and head down Ipoly útca, where you'll find an Aldi Supermarket on the corner of the next block. In the opposite direction, also on Ipoly útca, make your way to Váci útca and the bustling Lehel Csarnok (a large food market, pictured below). You can't miss it.
Shopaholics will appreciate the WestEnd City Center, also on Váci útca. There's something like 400 specialty stores in this mammoth shopping mall, which also boasts a cinema complex, enormous fountains, and a range of cafes. Speaking of which, there is no restaurant at the Adina, but there are numerous eateries in close proximity to the hotel - everything from a 100-year old restaurant that serves traditional Hungarian cuisine, to an Oriental soup house, and even Greek-style gyros. You certainly won't go hungry.
Walk down Ipoly útca to Pozsonyi útca, past Szent Istvan park to Jászai Mari tér, where you can jump on board the Number 2 tram on the other side of Szent Istvan krt. Tickets are available from machines the station. This tram travels along the riverfront and stops outside the Museum of Ethnography and Parliament Building. The last stop is at the Hungarian Academy of Sciences on Széchenyi István tér, a short walk from the Széchenyi Chain Bridge. Walk across the bridge and look for the Sikló or funicular at the Buda end of the bridge. It will take you up to the Buda Castle district, however you can also walk up the hill if you prefer. Please note, in the event that you are interested, I'll be sharing more information about Budapest sightseeing in a future article.
The Adina Apartment Hotel Budapest is centrally located at Hegedűs Gyula utca 52, in a peaceful residential area, which is in reasonably close proximity to the CBD, but then far enough away so that it's not too busy or noisy. The city centre is a 25-minute walk away, but with the station just three minutes from the hotel, you can also take the underground to the city. There's also an excellent bus service, as well as trams and a trolley car, easily accessible from the hotel. For bookings, visit the Adina Hotels web site.
Attractions in and around the area include the Budapest Parliament Building, the Museum of Ethnography, St Stephen's Basilica, Buda Castle, Margaret Island, the Danube Promenade, the Váci utca shopping district, and much, much more.
For more information about good things to see, taste and do in Budapest, please stay tuned for my upcoming article. See also Visit Budapest. Travel or Budapest Festival & Tourism for further information.
Disclaimer: The Good Things team stayed at the Adina Apartment Hotel Budapest in the summer of 2015 and travelled to Europe at their own expense. This is a review, not a sponsored post. Opinions expressed are our own.
Over to you, dear readers, have you ever found a gem of a hotel like this one when travelling overseas? And have you ever been to Budapest?
I'm Liz, a.k.a Bizzy Lizzy,
the writer, cook and traveller behind
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NB: I use Australian standard measuring cups and spoons in my recipes.