Holidays for Couples Holidays for Couples Apr-Sep 2017 - Page 36

wanderlust // top tipples // NEW YORK CAFE 
 This place is so magnificently grand, it’s like having a cocktail in St Peter’s Basilica. Never will you sip a cocktail somewhere so ornate, amongst so much marble and gilt. Opened in 1894, in Hungary’s golden age, the New York Cafe once served society’s chicest – the artists, writers, thinkers, nobility and great beauties of the day. It outlived the two world wars, the revolution of 1956, fell into disrepair in the dark days of Communism, then became a sports shop, until finally in 2006 it was restored to its former glory. All soaring ceilings, frescoes and plush velvet, this Italian Renaissance-style building is a very special place, and to drink here is to get a glimpse of an older, more elegant age. In days gone by it was called the Most Beautiful Coffee House in The World, and deservedly so. Off-the-scale fabulous. Erzsébet körút 9-11, Budapest; // PIAF Piaf
is a fabulously louche, late-night haunt, named after the tortured French chanteuse of ‘Je Ne Regrette Rien’ fame. Appropriately there is a cabaret feel to this dimly lit, ambient place, open till six in the morning and accessed through thick red velvet curtains. You get all sorts in here, from trolley dollies to the mysterious Budapest demi-monde listening to live music – torch songs, naturally – and downstairs there’s a bit more of a buzz with a lively bar and a spacious dance floor. Piaf is an experience, an end-of-the-night kind of a joint, when all you want is to stay out a bit longer, for just one more drink, wearing your fabulous dress after a night on the town. Be like Edith and regret nothing. Nagymezö utca 25, Budapest Getting there Rail Europe links Budapest to more than 15,000 European destinations. Hungary can be included on a range of Eurail Passes, from single-country to more extensive multi-country passes. For details, go to 34 // KOLEVES KERT Another ruin bar, Koleves Kert (Stone Soup Garden) is the reinvention, the next chapter, ruin bar 2.0 if you like, taking things to the next level. It still has the mismatched, slightly chaotic feel, but it’s actually very together and thoughtful, incorporating an excellent restaurant, a lovely open-air pub and even an apartment where you can stay. This is a gorgeous alfresco place for drinks in summer with its laid-back ambience and shabby-chic charm, and even its cute website is a lot of fun. Kazinczy utca 41, Budapest; H