Corinthia expands its operations
The five-star deluxe Corinthia Grand Hotel Royal, a landmark
redevelopment of a historic 19TH century hotel in the heart of Budapest,
Hungary, was declared 'officially open' last week, in the presence of
the President of Hungary Ferenc Madl, the President of Malta Guido De
Marco, and other distinguished personalities.
Corinthia Group Chairman Alfred Pisani and senior directors of the Group
welcomed guests to a memorable evening that included a classical music
concert by the acclaimed Liszt Ferenc Chamber Orchestra under the baton
of Maltese Conductor Michael Laus, and with the participation of celebrated
Hungarian pianist Balazs Szokolay. This was followed by a Gala Dinner
in the hotel's meticulously restored Grand Ballroom, reminiscent of
the City's glittering social life of the late 19th century.
Within Hungary, the re-opening of the Grand Hotel Royal is being hailed
as a major milestone for the City of Budapests continued revival.
The Hotel enjoys a special place in the heart of most Hungarians in
that the property had, for many years following its first opening in
1896, been a focal element in the cultural and social life of Budapest
for over half a century, as also of the countrys long standing
tradition of five-star hospitality.
The extensive project has indeed been a truly impressive achievement
for the owners, International Hotel Investments plc., who acquired the
Grand Hotel Royal on the Companys inception in 2000 and immediately
moved to initiate the mammoth task of rebuilding the erstwhile derelict
and abandoned hotel. Quality Project Management Ltd, a Maltese project
management company affiliated to IHI, was nominated to lead the project
and represent IHIs interests with consultants, architects, contractors
and neighbours. The work covered 59,000 square metres of construction,
essentially entailing the total redevelopment of the historic Grand
Hotel Royal, while retaining historic features such as the listed façade
and the imposing turn-of-the-century Grand Ballroom. In the course of
restoration, utmost care was taken to restore the original atmosphere
of the Royal, with traditional architecture blending with modern style
to create a unique harmony. Walls now feature works by contemporary
Hungarian artists, and floors in the public areas are covered in marble.
The Ballroom itself is now an exclusive event hall for up to 400 guests
and the focal point of the largest and most modern conference centre
in town, with 30 additional meeting rooms including the state-of-the-art
Exhibition Centre, which has direct vehicle access from the road and
is joined to the main building by a spectacular glass bridge. The 3,600
square metre Conference Centre can accommodate up to 2200 guests and
boasts of the most complete range of facilities of any hotel in Hungary.
It represents two-thirds of the entire conference space available in
the City's five-star hotels.
Other hotel facilities comprise 414 executive bedrooms and suites, a
splendid array of dining services including the casual Brasserie and
the elegant Rickshaw, the Bistro, perfect for an early business breakfast,
Le Bar with its magnificent cocktails, and the famed Royal Coffee House
and Conditorei, a 300-car multi-storey car park, 28 penthouse apartments
and a casino nightclub.
Due to re-open by late Summer, a fully equipped wellness centre, located
beneath the hotel, will feature a pool area meticulously renovated to
its original style, reminiscent of the famed Royal Spa of the 19th century.
The Hotel is being operated by Corinthia Hotels International on behalf
of IHI. Corinthia Hotels International operates 22 four and five-star
city and resort hotels in 11 destinations and it's portfolio includes
the five-star Corinthia Aquincum Hotel, also in Budapest.
IHI plc is a hotel investor and developer. Other than the Corinthia
Grand Hotel Royal, the Company owns the Corinthia San Gorg Hotel in
Malta, as well as the Corinthia Alfa Hotel in Lisbon and the Corinthia
Nevskij Palace Hotel in St Petersburg, Russia.