Holidays for Couples Holidays for Couples Apr-Sep 2017 - Page 34

Bar-hopping in Budapest In the bars of Hungary’s capital you can wine and dine in style, hang with the cool kids or step back in time. Jane Wright takes a boozy tour of Budapest 1 // HIGH NOTE SKYBAR, ARIA HOTEL
 In the last few years, Budapest has been getting extremely chic – so chic, in fact, it’s like Communism never happened, which is exactly how the Hungarians like it. Oh, those Russians. This gorgeous boutique hotel, “inspired by music” is the last word in 21st- century super-luxe, attracting the bold and the beautiful, with a spectacular roof-terrace High Note SkyBar created for drinking the kind of cocktails drunk by men in sharp suits and women in red lipstick. Slap bang next to the magnificent St Stephen’s Basilica, the hotel, located on the Pest side of the Danube River, has magnificent views across the city’s rooftops to Old Buda illuminated on the hill. On a warm night full of possibilities, with the city lit up before you, this is the perfect spot for a glass of Champagne. Hercegprímás utca 5, Budapest; ariahotelbudapest.com 32 // SZIMPLA
 KERT Budapest is famous for its ‘ruin’ bars – cool, edgy, off-the-cuff places created from old, run-down, warren-like buildings, often with courtyards and gardens. Drinking in one of them is a bit like being a student again, roughing it for a bit of grungey glamour with the cool kids. Szimpla Kert was one of the early ones, tapping into the city’s growing confidence and desire to create an alternative cultural life for its young people. It’s a bit out-there, a bit bonkers, but great fun as you wander about, wondering what’s around the next corner, in the next room, or even above your head. A garden twinkling with fairylights, cars made into tables and acid-trip graffiti all help to discombobulate and add to the fun. Above all, it’s cheap, buzzy, friendly and great for people-watching. Kazinczy utca 14, Budapest; szimpla.hu 2