After the renovation of the Northern Klotild Palace, it is the southern palace’s turn to be renewed. The Turkish owners are starting the renovation just recently and, according to the plans, it will be finished in 2018. They not only count with the hotel guests. There’s also going to be a coffee house in the place of the onetime Belvárosi Kávéház and the first real Turkish restaurant of Budapest will be opened as well.
According to turizmusonline.hu, the renovation of the 5* luxury hotel with its 156 rooms, the Spa, the creation of a Sky Bar, the renovation of the coffee house and the building of the Turkish restaurant are part of a 10-billion-forint investment.
One thing that shows the importance of this investment is that the Turkish ambassador of Hungary and the owner, Süleyman Özyer, made an appearance together at the press-conference last Friday. This is going to be the first city hotel investment of the Özyer Group; they mostly built family resorts in Turkey up till now. They also have interests in the media, the energy industry and other fields.
The company’s activity isn’t only about business; they want to strengthen the Turkish-Hungarian friendship by supporting the initiation of a twin city relation between Héviz and Fethiye, where their headquarters are located.
It was another swing to the development that the Hungarian government ranked the works as works of high importance regarding the national economy. This is a step to facilitate Turkish-Hungarian economic relations and the growth of investments like this.
The building itself has a very adventurous story. Until the end of the 19th century there were 1000-2000 m2 flats in the building. This is where the onetime Belvárosi Kávéház functioned first as a coffee house, later as a casino. The building got damaged in World War II and even though smaller reparations had been made, it was evacuated in 2012 due to its life-threatening condition. 89% of it was bought in 2014 by Melis Investment Kft., the subsidiary company of Özyer, and then the remaining part was bought last week by the Özyer Group.
The owner wants to accomplish the project with the co-operation of exclusively Hungarian entrepreneurs. The choosing of the designer happened through application; out of 8 applicants the Puhl és Dajka Építész iroda won the task of designing while the Céh Zrt. won the task of the execution of the project management.
The technical manager said that the base of the building seems good but the beautiful tower is in a very bad condition. As they were able to find the contemporary plans of the building, they will try to stick to them as much as possible during the reconstruction.
They are planning to create spacious rooms which will take up half of the property. The representative lobby will be approachable from the middle passage, while the spectacular restaurant will be approachable from Duna Street. They promise to offer the specialities of the authentic Turkish cuisine, making it the first real Turkish restaurant beside the street food buffets in Budapest. There’s also going to be conference rooms, a roof-garden and a Sky Bar. This is going to be the first labelled green hotel in Hungary.
They are still looking for a brand to run the hotel but Péter Kemény, the technical manager of the project, said that they want to choose a brand that is not yet present in Hungary. He also added that the construction will put a lot of pressure on the neighbourhood; at least one lane will be closed.
There’s going to be 3 luxury hotels just in the immediate neighbourhood (Klotild Palaces and Paris Garden) and there are 3 more in the making. These investments will mean 800 luxury hotel rooms for Budapest. If we add the hotel rooms on the coast of the Danube, the number is 1800. When turizmusonline.hu asked Péter Kemény how it is possible that this many luxury hotels can function so close to each other, he said “We have to be the best and offer unique interior and service!”
Translated by Alexandra Béni
Photo: www.facebook.com/Klotild-Palota, www.facebook.com/Ferenciek-tere
Copy editor: bm