Published: July 25 2023
New York Cafe in Budapest, often referred to as the "most beautiful cafe in the world," stands as a testament to the luxurious Austro-Hungarian era. Seeped in history and splendour, this cafe is a must-visit in Budapest.
This masterpiece was initially built in 1894 by the New York Life Insurance Company as a local headquarters. The ground floor was transformed into a luxurious cafe which quickly became a hub for literary and artistic figures.
After many iterations – including a memorable period as a sporting goods store during the socialist era – New York Cafe reopened in 2006, after extensive renovation work to restore its previous glamour.
The Café’s Interior
As you enter, the breathtaking interior – complete with frescoes, gilded stucco columns, and elaborate chandeliers – reminds you of its almost cathedral-like grandeur.
Pictures and descriptions fail to do justice to the ornamental beauty of the cafe. The gold-spattered ceiling, Venetian mirrors and variety of marbles create an awe-inspiring amalgamation of eclecticism, making every moment spent here a treasure.
The Culinary Experience
Providing more than just visual treat, New York Cafe ensures to tantalize your taste buds with their sumptuous menu. Traditional Hungarian dishes, delicate pastries, and a variety of coffees and teas are available to choose from. A meal here isn't just about the food, but the atmosphere, history and the stories encapsulated within its walls.
Live Music and Literary History
An extension of its artistic tradition, live music, often from a violin or piano, is played throughout the day. The cafe was once a favorite haunt of Hungarian writers and editors and was the birthplace of the influential literary magazine Nyugat. The decor and ambiance are now maintained as a tribute to this illustrious past.
New York Cafe is located on the Grand Boulevard of Budapest, and it's part of the Boscolo Budapest Hotel. The cafe operates from 8 am to 11 pm daily. Due to the popularity of the cafe, booking in advance is recommended - especially if you plan to visit during peak hours.
While the prices are on the high end, it prepares you for a lavish experience unique to itself. Offering the delicious cuisine, the impeccable service and the opportunity to immerse in a piece of history make New York Cafe a must-visit place in the heart of Budapest.
From its unique history to unrivaled splendor and culinary delights, a visit to the New York Cafe is literally a taste of Budapest's golden era. So, whether you're a history enthusiast, gourmet aficionado, or a coffee lover, a signpost leading you to the New York Cafe is one to follow.