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Inside the branch of Alexandra bookstore located inside the now-defunct Paris Department Store (Párizsi Nagy Áruház, Andrássy út 39) is one of the more beautiful café in Europe. Click here for our post on the bookstore.

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After entering the Alexandra Bookstore on the ground floor you’ll find a pair of escalators which bring you up to the first floor, and usher you directly in front of the Lotz Hall (Lotz-Terem).

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The Lotz Hall (Lotz-Terem) was named after Karl Lotz who painted the murals inside the Alexandra Bookcafe, as well as those of the Budapest Opera, Hungarian Parliament, Hungarian National Museum, St. Stephens Basilica, the ceiling fresco in the Buda Castle and many many more.

bookcafe-3International newspaper, live piano.

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This man was a master of his craft, and the Hungarians loved him for it. While the rest of the building has been more or less whitewashed, the Lotz Hall has been faithfully restored and brought back to its former glory. It was the former Teresa City Casino ballroom.

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The cafe hosts live music performance, as well as occasional demonstrations and book signings.

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We did not stop for a coffee as it was already dinner time.

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The national tricolor and Budapest red-yellow-blue flag made up of the various elements of the composition.

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We have seen this neo-Renaissance (?) decorative style in the Parliament as well. Wonderfully ornate, but almost too shiny for us.

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Many of these “restorations” look like new copies of the old style – rather than restoring actual old interior pieces.

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Like the place we had our event dinner, the Vigadó concert hall – all the interior details were sparkling new. Here are a few pictures of the Vigadó which is the second largest concert hall in Budapest and was built in 1865. It hosted numerous performances by Lizst in the past.

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We were at a private banquet in this place which seemed empty – presumably there was no public performance or ballroom dancing that evening. A folk band and a small trope of dancers entertained us during dinner.

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The building suffered serious damage during World War II and it apparently took 30+ years to restore.

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We have more photos of this type of interiors taken from the Parliament and the Opera House. May be we will put them up later.

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