Hungary’s coffee culture goes back to the 16th century when the Turks occupied some parts of Hungary. It became even more fashionable during the Austro-Hungarian Empire in the 19th century. At that time hundreds of cafe houses sprang up around the city. Some of these cafes attracted intellectual groups, such as writers, artists, poets, journalists, influential characters. These grand cafes became popular spots to have friendly conversations over a cup of coffee. The most impressive historical cafes are still keep this coffee culture alive inviting locals and visitors alike.
1; New York Cafe – New York Kavehaz
New York Cafe is the most luxurious cafe not only in Budapest, but also in the world. It has a glamorous interior. This charming eclectic Italian Renaissance cafe is situated right next to the Boscolo Hotel. The palace was opened in 1894, then during the Socialism the government took ownership over the building, and finally in 2001 it was bought by the Italian Boscolo Hotel group to bring it back its original splendour.
During summer, there is a small queue to get inside due to its high popularity for its coffees and local sweet treats served in a dazzling pomp. The mirrored tables, the golden plated stuccoes, the frescos on the ceiling, the venetian lampshades create a sophisticated ambience to enjoy your coffee.
It feels like you are a royalty in this elegant cafe for such reasonable prices you wouldn’t want to believe it. You will be pleasantly surprised. It is an excellent value for money. In other countries to sit in a glorious interior like this you have to book in advance and your purse would get considerably slimmer. So, do not miss this treat.
Location: Erzsebet krt.9-11, 1073, Budapest ~ New York Cafe is a few steps away from Blaha Lujza ter metro station. It is not located in the most tourists area, but definitely worth visiting.
Personally, I enjoy only coffee and cake here, so I cannot comment on their food selections. There are famous restaurants, such as the Gundel Restaurant in the City Park (Varosliget), next to the zoo, that I like the most. I will write a whole post about some of the best restaurants in Budapest.
2; Cafe Gerbeaud – Gerbeaud Cukraszda
In the heart of the city, at the Vorosmarty square the Grunderzeit style coffeehouse is an excellent choice for a coffee and cake in a stunning interior or on the terrace during warmer seasons. The history of Cafe Gerbeaud goes back to the mid 19th century when Henrik Kugler established his confectionary shop. Henrik Kugler spotted the talented Emil Gerbeaud and convinced him to join in his business. Later, Gerbeaud took over and flourished the confectionary that has been associated with quality and decadence.
I suggest, that before you order check the prices with the waiter, as they might charge for extra services to avoid surprises.
Location: Vorosmarty ter 7-8, 1051, Budapest
3; Cafe Astoria
What a delightful cafe and restaurant with elegant touches! Its cafe boasts of an authentic coffee-house ambience with large windows, shiny brass decor and crystal chandeliers. If you are a traveller who is looking for places with a unique experience to enjoy graceful old fashioned settings where time seemed to come to a standstill this is the place for you. Cafe Astoria has a peaceful atmosphere that makes it ideal for business meetings too.
You will be pleased not only with the cafe, but also with the highly professional service and the reasonable prices.
Location: Kossuth Lajos u. 19, 1053
There are plenty more cafe restaurants in Budapest, but these three are unique with their own treasured history and charm. Sitting in a beautifully decorated cafe to enjoy a refreshment is always a part of a fabulous city break. Let’s Simply Enjoy Travel and add a bit of favour to our travel.