Budapest stuns with enchanting castles, ornate palaces, tree-lined boulevards, and that shimmering blue Danube. But venture to either end of its iconic Chain Bridge and you’ll find a spate of high-design hotels and hip, gastronomic pubs spilling even more character into this cool and exotic city.

Hotel Parlament

Parlament is small but very pleasingly formed – indeed, it’s one of the best boutique hotels in the city, with more facilities and more imaginative design features than others in this category. And, as the name suggests, it’s well located near the Parliament building.

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Aria Hotel Budapest by Library Hotel Collection

The curtain is up on a new music-themed hotel in the shadow of St Stephen’s Basilica, whose rooftop bar could become the coolest place in Budapest for a cocktail. Other highlights include the soaring garden courtyard, complete with kitsch sofas and a space-age piano, and a seductive underground spa and swimming pool.

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Casati Budapest Hotel Superior

Artsy boutique hotels are all the rage in Budapest, a great many of them plasticky and bland. Named after Luisa Casati — an eccentric Italian patroness of the arts during the early 20th century who wore live snakes as jewellery and took walks with a pair of cheetahs — Casati Budapest is a cut above the rest.

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Baltazár Budapest – Boutique Hotel

This small hotel of just 11 rooms is owned by the Zsidai family, who have been leading restaurateurs in the city for more than 30 years. As you’d expect, its restaurant is top drawer, and the hotel has a colour, character and attention to design detail that makes it very special.

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Hotel Moments Budapest

Moments is sure to become one of Budapest’s favourite hotels. Marrying contemporary design with the original spirit of its 19th-century building, this is a place with character and elegance.

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