Mandarin Oriental has announced plans to open its first property in Hungary, with the existing Gellért hotel in Budapest set to be rebranded as the Mandarin Oriental Gellert, Budapest.

The Art Nouveau property first opened in 1918, located at the foot of Gellert Hill on the Buda side of the city and overlooking the Danube river close to Liberty Bridge.

The hotel has been closed for renovations since December 2021, and is now scheduled to reopen in 2027, featuring 143 rooms and suites designed by London-based Alexander Waterworth.

Facilities will include a spa with seven experiential areas, as well as a top floor indoor pool housed under a retractable glass ceiling, a rooftop bar,  an indoor-outdoor specialty restaurant, a patisserie and café, and a restored Art Nouveau ballroom.

Mandarin Oriental Gellert, Budapest will join the existing Mandarin Oriental, Prague, and the forthcoming Mandarin Oriental, Vienna as the group’s third property in central Europe.

Nex year Mandarin Oriental is set to reopen the historic Savoy Baur en Ville hotel following renovations, and the long-awaited Mandarin Oriental Mayfair, London is also set to be unveiled in spring 2024 – having first been announced in 2017.

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Commenting on the news István Tiborcz, owner and president of the BDPST Group (which owns the Gellért Hotel), said:

“The Gellért Hotel is perhaps the most iconic building in Budapest, one that is close to the hearts of most Hungarian people. While we view it as an exciting real estate development project, we also bear tremendous responsibility towards both the building and its history, as well as the residents of Budapest.

“That’s why it was particularly important for us to entrust the operation of this historic building to a company of such calibre. The Mandarin Oriental, a luxury hotel brand with over 60 years of experience, meticulously combines this expertise with the culture of the respective country, highlighting unique design elements while respecting the heritage and Hungarian roots of the Gellért Hotel.

“Value preservation and creation have always been of paramount importance to the group, so our goal is to restore the former glory of the Gellért Hotel, passing it on to future generations.”

The announcement of Mandarin Oriental Gellert, Budapest follows the opening of a W Hotel within the city’s Drechsler Palace on Andrassy Avenue earlier this year, and the addition of the New York Palace Budapest Hotel to Anantara’s portfolio in 2021.

For our feature on developments in Hungary’s capital (published in 2022), see:

Budapest: Hungarian symphony