Airbnb offers a plethora of lodging options in Budapest, and it's particularly convenient for finding cheap, no-frills, centrally located accommodation. For less price sensitive visitors who prefer the comforts of a hotel, there're a handful of excellent options to choose from. They range from local boutique hotels inside historic buildings featuring contemporary design and panoramic vistas, to high-end international chains with an endless list of amenities. Below is a selection of the best Budapest hotels that are worth your money. (See the neighborhood overview to familiarize yourself with the different pockets of Budapest.)
Rum Hotel Budapest (Királyi Pál u. 4, 1053; from 120 euros): This 40-room boutique hotel is what happens when gifted interior designers obtain a generous budget. The 19th century building of Rum Hotel nestles on a surprisingly quaint downtown plaza next to the stately law school that breeds the Hungarian political elite. The tastefully chic interior features contemporary design styles, lending a sharp contrast to the pre-war exterior. One of the highlights at Rum Hotel is the rooftop restaurant with a panoramic vista of Budapest. All this for little over €100 a night.
Gresham Palace Four Seasons (Széchenyi István tér 5-6, 1051; from 350 euros): Hands down the most glamorous hotel not just in Budapest but across Central Europe, standing tall in a category of its own. The building, a grand art nouveau construction from the glory days of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, is a straight-line extension of the venerable Chain Bridge. This means that the front-facing rooms have sweeping views of the Castle Hill and the Danube River. Inside, there're plenty of details to marvel at: a royal-looking lobby with Zsolnay tiles, a glass-roofed arcade, and elaborate stained-glass windows in stately staircases. The celebrity-studded guest list often includes A-list Hollywood actors in town for a film shooting. Kollázs, the restaurant and cocktail bar on the ground floor, is an appropriate match to the hotel.
The Ritz-Carlton, Budapest (Erzsébet tér 9, 1051; from 300 euros): Built in 1913, the polished limestone covered building graciously looking over the city’s main square is unique even within Budapest’s rich architectural traditions by bearing art nouveau, art deco and early modernist marks. Sparing no expense, the building was elaborately refurbished inside and out in 2016. The result is a breathtaking combination of old-world monumentality and a luxurious, but not tacky contemporary design. Each room is decorated with Hungarian op-art paintings. Long list of amenities include an indoor rooftop swimming pool beneath a glittering glass roof, a bistro-type restaurants with Hungarian staples (Deák St. Kitchen), and a champagne bar.
Casati Budapest Hotel (Paulay Ede u. 31, 1061; from 130 euros): It's tough to beat the location of this 25-room boutique hotel on the borderland between the boisterous District 7 dotted with ruin bars and the upscale Andrássy Avenue with the Opera House, both just a stone's throw away. Inside, a carefully refurbished 18th century building with an ivy-covered courtyard mingles with contemporary design. Hungarian artworks adorn each room. For a nightcap, visit the Shanghai-themed cocktail bar, Tuk Tuk, on the ground floor.
Iberostar (Október 6. u. 26, 1051; from 190 euros): The 2009 reconstruction of this building was the last project of Péter Reimholz, one of Hungary's influential architects. The result is a refined copper-clad extension atop the 19th century white stucco facade. Inside is a Spanish-designed 50-room boutique hotel that comes with five-stars and the most spacious rooms you will find in the city. Halfway between the Parliament and St. Stephen's Basilica, it's located right along the main tourist paths. For the best experience, ask for a room overlooking the imposing Liberty Square, and soak yourself in the dimly-lit, mosaic-tiled hot tub in the spa room.