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Nyuszi

Budapest, Hungary

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I hope to add more to this over the weekend and over time, but here's some starter info on Budapest:

Budapest is the Capitol of Hungary

Population: (2003) 1,719,342

Language: Magyar (Hungarian)

Budapest is 3 cities in one - Buda, Obuda, and Pest. The Danube River flow through the center dividing Buda and Pest, with Obuda to the north on the Buda side. Buda is mainly residential, while Pest contains the majority of business, retail, and entertainment space. The airport is also in Pest (but waaay out there, about 45 min from city centre). The city is further divided into districts that have both a name and a number associated with each.

Map (from http://www.fsz.bme.hu/hungary/budapest/cgi-bin/search)

bpteljes.jpg

Transportation Links:

Metro: BKV Rt

Intercity bus: Vola'nbusz

National rail: http://www.elvira.hu/

Airport: Ferihegy

More to come later...

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Welcome to the forum Nyuszi and thank you so much for posting that. I look forward to your postings about Budapest as I have always been fascinated by this city.

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Welcome to the forum Nyuszi and thank you so much for posting that.  I look forward to your postings about Budapest as I have always been fascinated by this city.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Really? I love to hear it. It's such an amazing city, I take it so personally when people like or dislike it :-)

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Man, I hate when the browser freezes in the middle of my posting and I have to start all over *sigh*

So, I'll give a little info on development/Westernization in Budapest. Here are some links to articles, as well as my own thoughts/observations:

Shopping/Retail:

Two articles on shopping centers, malls and hypermarkets in the Hungarian market:

About the Market

Projected Growth

My thoughts:

When I lived there in 1999, there were a number of small grocery chains including many Hungarian-owned. There was one grocery chain - Kaiser's - that was comparable to an American grocery store. Most others were really just a dry goods/deli type of place, you would go to separate store or the markets for fruit & veg, meat, and poultry. There was one department store - Skala - that was somewhere between a Kohl's and a Filene's. The first mall inside the city had just been finished (called Mammut, in northern Buda). It was such a contentious issue that it received regular bomb threats (I can recall three off the top of my head).

Fast forward to when I lived there in 2003: There are numerous malls throughout the city and country, including some that even overwhelm me with their gaudiness. (E.G., WestEnd has a TGI Fridays, and indoor waterfall, all the usual mall stuff, and offers hot air balloon rides for a bird's eye view of the city). Most malls now contain a grocery store (often the dutch SMatch chain) that would be recognizable to Americans. You still go to the butcher instead of buying shrink wrapped stuff, but he's in the same store as your cereal and milk. Groby is the only existing Hungarian-owned grocery story. There are also international hypermarket and Big Box stores inside or just outside the city - Auchan, Tesco, Ikea...

Office space/downtown development:

No Skyscrapers in the Center

Luxury Apartments

I don't have much to say about office space in BP. In 99, I was a student and rarely spent time in the downtown business district. I see some buildings that are clearly new-is or under construction, but I have no basis of comparison.

Personal real estate though... As far as I understand, many people owned flats by a sort of squatters' rights. When the state gave up ownership, whoever lived there just became the new owner. In this sense, almost all flats in BP are not apartments in an american sense, but more like condos. Someone owns the building and someone else owns the flat itself. In some cases, this was problematic because it was unclear who owned the building and it would fall into disrepair.

Now there are a lot of developments, particularly in district III (Obuda) that are like western condo/townhouse developments. Apparently, they're pretty popular with young families, especially because the government will give young couples who are married and agree to have a child withing the next few years a chunk of money to purchase a home.

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I spent a month in Hungary. Budapest is a feast for the eyes. I especially liked the ornate build of the Parliament building when I was up close to it,something I didn't see until I got close to it. Castle Buda was also a trip,it was the first time I've ever seen a palace in real life.

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Hello Nyuszi and others,

I am from Budapest (or rather a small "city of artists", close to Budapest called Szentendre). I am an architect and graphic designer and here is my own cityview of Budapest:

http://www.grafikustervezo.com/budapest_illustrated_map.html

I hope you'll like this wonderful city - as I do :)

Bela

Welcome to UrbanPlanet, Bela!

Its great to have you here. :)

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Really? I love to hear it. It's such an amazing city, I take it so personally when people like or dislike it :-)

I keep studying Budapest because I would like the same for Beograd. I'm living here in the States now but I will be in Budapest in December and staying with relatives there. It will be a long time before Serbia gets rid of the aura of corruption before western investors go there. Budapest has come along fast. I was there in February 2000 when there were hugh billboard signs on top of the buildings in Pest and buildings were covered with black diesel soot and construction was going on everywhere. I have lots of architectural pictures of how it was. Then I went to Budapest again in 2001 and WOW!!!! what a transformation. "Paris on the Danube" good description... I took the same architectural pictures to document how things had changed. What an incredible city!! I have always found strength for my own country by watching the spirit of the Hungarian people. The whole world could learn something from them.

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