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Board sub-station needed the hard rock of the hill, which is why they are located here. The next building, the National Archives (Bécsi Kapu tér 2 – 4.) designed by Samu Pecz, 1913 – 1920, does not give rise to such a question. The only question here is why it should be so big. Quite a few medieval houses had to be demolished to clear the site, which once had a large tower that was demolished during World War Two and was never rebuilt. And in early November 1956, when the Soviet troops re-entered Budapest, thus putting an end to the short-lived revolution, some freedom fighters fired their weapons from the windows of the building. Tanks fired back, and in the ensuing fire some invaluable documents were destroyed. The Russian soldiers did not know which building they were aiming at, they did not really know which country they were in. Some of them allegedly thought they were in Egypt, at the Suez conflict. District Hall of the Castle (Polgármesteri Hivatal) 4C I. Kapisz­­­trán tér 1. ••• This run-of-the-mill neo-Classic block was built around 1835. In 1869 it was converted into a large printing house (the State Printing House), which worked for the ministries located in the Castle District. It operated like that until it was bought by the local government in the mid-1990s, when it was beautifully restored and converted into a district hall (by Ilona Kremnicsán, 1997). It somewhat stressed local finances, but Tamás Katona (the mayor at the time) was a former historian specializing in the 19th century, and he insisted on it. One can walk into the covered courtyard, which is a great venue for public ceremonies and concerts. It is decorated with high quality oversized historical paintings and some of the original statues from the top of the old Pest City Hall, which was demolished to make way for the Erzsébet híd. Inside there is a high-tech lift, as well as some restored wrought-iron from the heyday of the printing house era. The landmark preservation authority did not let the builders attach a balcony to provide a speaking platform for the mayor, arguing that it would be a fabrication. A renowned specialist who obviously agreed, commented in a review: “It is possible to add things to a landmark building, especially things that are needed. It is possible to decorate it with some false jewels. But one must not put a wig on a landmark.” Vienna Gate (Bécsi kapu) 4E ••• Bécsi kapu tér was called the “Saturday Market” in the Middle Ages. This was the market at which non-Jewish merchants bought and sold goods. It is the northern gate of the Castle District, and is where all four streets that run the length of the hill converge. From this square it takes

PARK_Budapest_belivek_v065.indd 104-105

The Castle Area and Váci Utca

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only a few minutes to walk to the busy centre of Buda, Moszkva tér. If a child talks back to his parents they usually scold him by saying “Your mouth is as big as the Vienna Gate”. You can walk up to the top of the gate. Enjoy the panorama of Buda and the view of the late 19th century Lutheran walk 1 ang 2006/11/22 17:39 Page 59 church in the square below. Parliament can also be seen from an unusual angle from here. To the right of the gate, next to the bastion wall, there is a small grove of trees. This is called WALK ONE 59 the Europe Grove because the mayors of cities all over Europe brought and planted 1972.areThere 16 types brought and planted rarerare trees trees here inhere 1972.inThere sixteenare types of tree of trees here, among them are a Turkish hazel,and a Japanese cherry here, among them a Turkish hazel, Japanese cherry a cherry laurel. and a cherry laurel.

Bécsi kapu tér 7. The building, which stands on the site of a medieval house, was rebuilt in its present form in 1807 by a priest and teacher who

Bécsi kapu 7. commissioned ••• This building, whichofstands the Socrates, site of a lived here. Hetér also the portraits Virgil, on Cicero, medieval house, rebuilt inare itsbeautiful present grilles form in by a priest Livy, Quintilian andwas Seneca. There on 1807 the windows and and livedinhere. He alsoIn commissioned the20th portraits on theteacher door ofwho a staircase the gateway. the first half of the century this was Cicero, the houseSocrates, of Baron Lajos (1880–1961), an erudite of Virgil, Livy,Hatvany Quintilian and Seneca to bepatron seen of literature and on the the arts,first who floor spent the major part the profit of his sugar on the façade between theof windows. There are factory on supporting some of the greatest figures of early 20th-century litbeautiful grilles on the windows and on the door of a staircase erature. In 1935 and in 1936 Thomas Mann was his guest here three occain the– on gateway. In the first halftheofpoet, the was 20thamong century BaronHe Lajos sions one of them Attila József, the guests. was Hatvany (1880 – 1961) lived to here. He was of so short of money that he walked this house froman hiserudite far away patron Pest home. He could notand afford and spent cable car tickets. literature thetramway arts, who most of the profits from his sugar factory to support some of the greatest figures of early A rest: Litea Bookshop and Tea Room – in the courtyard of Fortuna utca 4.

Ibolya utca IBOLYA UTCA

The Castle Area and Váci Utca

Walk ONE

Walk ONE

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Hotel Hilton

HessANDRÁS András tér HESS TÉR Hotel Hilton

Hotel Hilton 5B Hess András tér 4. This, formerly the most elegant

hotel in Budapest, was completed in 1976 and was given a warm welcome by both architects and experts on historic buildings. (It was designed by 20th century literature. 1935 1936 Thomas his Béla Pintér.) The reason forIn that wasand a seemingly perfectMann mix ofwas old and new, since one of the hotel is the– wall of theofformer cloister, once guest here onside three occasions on one them,Jesuit the Hungarian built in a late József Rococo was style also and decorated withguests. plaits. The of poet Attila among the He Gothic was soremains short of a Dominican are not enclosed by tram the modern hotel car in such a way money that church he could afford and cable tickets, sothat he they can be visited. There are open-air opera performances in the Dominwalked here his far away home. ican cloister infrom the summer. At thePest opening ceremony, the President of Hilton International called this hotel the most beautiful pearl in the whole string. Matthias Church reflected in the large glass panes of the hotel has been a favourite subject of amateur photographers.

Fishermen’s Bastion (Halászbástya) 5C A lookout terrace, totally unfit for defence purposes, with five round towers and a main tower 2011.04.20. with several floors. It was built between 1890 and 1905. In the Middle Ages

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András Török's Budapest: A Critical Guide  

The Celebrated Insider's Guide, upgraded many times, probably the deepest and funnieast and truest portrait of any major European city. With...

András Török's Budapest: A Critical Guide  

The Celebrated Insider's Guide, upgraded many times, probably the deepest and funnieast and truest portrait of any major European city. With...

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