IC Budapest (Master Thread)

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Old May 10, 15, 3:48 am
  #121  
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Budapest

IC Budapest

Were you (or for multi-stayers are you generally) happy with the hotel/stay?
Yes

Which room did you book and which upgrade did you receive?
Booked Deluxe river view paid night and two nights award. Given large executive suite overlooking the Danube and Buda.

How are the rooms?
Huge living room with long wall to wall window. An awesome view as this hotel has IMHO the best location in Pest. A good sized bedroom facing the Sofitel on the opposite side of the building. However a relatively tiny bathroom for such a large suite. At first I thought it was the guest bathroom and I was hunting around for the master bath. But no, you get the same bathroom as a normal room it seems, with a shower-bath. However with large sized Agraria bottles.

How is the exec. lounge?
Excellent. Eastern Europe has some of the best lounges! Great food each night and very extensive Hungarian drink selection. We had dinner there each night and the service was top notch too. However the only negative of my stay was that on the award nights I had to pay €70 for the club. As I had a family of four it was worth the price, but it's weird that I only got Club included on my paid night.

What was your welcome gift?
Wine, fruit and both still and sparkling water placed throughout the suite.

How was the mini-bar?
Pretty sparse. No spirits, just a few soft drinks, a Red Bull, 2 beers and a red and white wine.

What was good and what was bad?
Full breakfast appears to be included for RA's even on award stays! Maybe AMB too, I'm not sure. But when I checked in with the hostess on my award days she welcomed me in and said "Thank You for your loyalty".

I was given a single free drink coupon and when I used it at the bar, the bartender said "Thank you for your loyalty". I have to say the staff training here is excellent. Throughout the hotel I experienced a nearly Four Seasons level of service.

Bad
Having to pay for club on award nights is bad IMHO. However at least they let me keep the suite on the award nights and the mini-bar continued to be free.

Value for $ or Priority Club Points?
It was €128 for the paid night and 35K points per night for the award, so yes it was an excellent value.

Would you return?
Yes.
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Old May 10, 15, 7:24 am
  #122  
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Originally Posted by stimpy View Post


How was the mini-bar?
Pretty sparse. No spirits, just a few soft drinks, a Red Bull, 2 beers and a red and white wine.
I was convinced this was a Budapest ploy to keep RA's sober

But, no. I was told that a "spirit selection" would be supplied on request. Whether or not this would involve an extra charge, I have no idea.

But you are right, it is one of the best-positioned, and one of the nicest, hotels in Budapest - either side of the river.
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Old May 10, 15, 8:04 am
  #123  
 
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Originally Posted by IAN-UK View Post
I was convinced this was a Budapest ploy to keep RA's sober

But, no. I was told that a "spirit selection" would be supplied on request. Whether or not this would involve an extra charge, I have no idea.

But you are right, it is one of the best-positioned, and one of the nicest, hotels in Budapest - either side of the river.
You need to call instant service, and ask for RA drinks package. It's free and is very nicely done.
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Old May 10, 15, 9:50 am
  #124  
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Originally Posted by IAN-UK View Post
I was convinced this was a Budapest ploy to keep RA's sober
With all the booze they had in the club, including pálinka, they completely failed in keeping me sober.
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Old May 11, 15, 1:11 pm
  #125  
 
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Damn I haven't been here in few years since I changed jobs I should try to visit soon
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Old Aug 4, 15, 6:17 am
  #126  
 
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Just thinking my options for my solo August long weekend trip, where company Classic room rate is only 79++ so anteing up 70euro/day for the club lounge almost doubles the daily rate which is crazy (I only get option of entry level room on company rates here) .

On plus side €70 is now only £50 due to better current exchange rates compared to 18months ago but for one person the €70 more than covers eating out in restaurants every day in Budapest.

I noted last visit Feb2014 IC Budapest had changed their lounge rules for RAs from Jan2014 needing us to purchase at non discounted rate from then onwards

Guess I will check in at lounge instead of ground floor reception desk as lounge staff are helpful and more flexible , last time the lounge supervisor suggested I paid to upgrade my booked room which was cheaper than buying club.

That said Budapest Lounge is definitely one of the better lounges I have enjoyed, has rather good and substantial afternoon food as well as decent evening food and evening drinks. The sparkling Hungarian wine (cava) is very nice.

Lounge access gives restaurant b/f option too , although I used lounge all but 1day. I am sure Stimpy got his restaurant b/f on back of his lounge access

Also Stimpy says he got free lounge on his one paid night which is a change from 2014 stance. Not sure if that is a change for 2015 or if Stimpy got lucky as did not book a club room

Last edited by scubaccr; Aug 4, 15 at 6:30 am
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Old Oct 24, 15, 2:54 pm
  #127  
 
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Stayed here last week for 4 nights - 2 at Friends and Family rate and 2 at AMB Weekend (to use free weekend night certificate.) I booked a King Superior River View with Club, which is the 2nd to top category, just below Executive Suite. As a regular AMB (not RA). (I was hoping that would nab me an upgrade to an Executive Suite.)

The staff at this IC are great. I emailed ahead to ask if the two reservations could be combined so I didn't have to move rooms, and asked for an early (noon) check in is possible, and got a quick response. When I checked in at the club lounge, everything was arranged.

Laszlo excitedly announced that they were able to upgrade me to a junior suite. Great. But that "junior suite" isn't quite what I was used to at other ICs. In fact, it's not even a bookable room category. The "junior suite" I was upgraded to is a very small, two room affair that's only one meter square larger (29m2) than regular 'deluxe' room. It's a bit of a weird configuration, a room line on one of the angled parts of the hotel, with a small bedroom leading to an even smaller living room. The living room can only fit a two seat loveseat (not the 3 seat sofa in a regular deluxe room), a small coffee table and a desk. No arm chair, and no room for a side table for the sofa (so there's a floor lamp.) No place to open a suitcase, apart from the floor, so I used the loveseat as my suitcase stand. The bathroom was also tiny.

The views from the room, of Chain Bridge, the Danube and the Buda hills, were beautiful. But the "suite" itself was cramped and kind of non-functional. When I had to work, I picked up my laptop and went down to the club lounge.

I just wanted to post this because if you're an AMB (not RA) and thinking about booking a King Superior with Club in hopes of getting an upgrade to an Executive Suite, the one category upgrade may likely be to this smaller 'unpubished' junior suite rather than to an executive.

One note about the internet. The free 'standard' internet is pretty slow, 500K max download, not even really sufficient to make a Skype voice call. When I complained about it, they upgraded me to the high speed 'business' internet (16MB download speed) and didn't charge me the approx. $15US/day for it.

The club lounge at this IC is lovely, with nice views over the Danube. Breakfast is a pretty standard club lounge spread (but you can also go to the restaurant.) From 12 to 5, they put out lunch, with soup, salad and sandwiches. From 6 to 8, they lay a full dinner spread, with two hot dishes, appetizers, wine, beer (and cocktails if you'd prefer) and desserts. (The free wine, beer and drinks continues until 10P.) A dinner spread in a club, in my experience, is pretty rare. Usually happy hour food offerings are canapes and nibbles. I really liked this, because when I'm traveling solo and don't have a dinner companion, sometimes I want to just fuel up and not do the restaurant thing. I think other people liked it too, because the club was packed at dinner.

Last edited by rgdave; Oct 27, 15 at 4:17 pm
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Old Oct 24, 15, 4:14 pm
  #128  
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Excellent INFO!!! Thank you!

I will be staying there next year for a few days!
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Old Oct 27, 15, 4:23 pm
  #129  
 
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Originally Posted by 355F1 View Post
Excellent INFO!!! Thank you!

I will be staying there next year for a few days!
You're welcome. One of the great things about Flyertalk is sharing 'boots on the ground' experiences, and what to expect, particularly with regard to upgrades and perks. Glad you found it useful. I hope you enjoy your stay. I did quite like the hotel. This is an IC where I think 'club' is the way to go. When I stayed, there were a lot of tour groups, so the lobby was busy with a lot of groups checking in and out, or gathering for their bus tour or whatever. The club is a welcome retreat from that busy-ness. At other IC's, which are more business-oriented, without a lot of groups, like Singapore, Beijing or Kuala Lumpur, going 'club' isn't as important because the lobby can be like a 'pay as you go club'. But here, the lobby and lobby bar aren't that relaxing to hang out.

Last edited by rgdave; Oct 27, 15 at 4:30 pm
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Old Oct 27, 15, 6:40 pm
  #130  
 
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Originally Posted by rgdave View Post

I just wanted to post this because if you're an AMB (not RA) and thinking about booking a King Superior with Club in hopes of getting an upgrade to an Executive Suite, the one category upgrade may likely be to this smaller 'unpubished' junior suite rather than to an executive.
FYI and a correction

The J/S is advertised and sold and is mostly the room that RA's booking entry level room are always upgraded too.
The J/s does not come with lounge access, one has to book the Exec Suite for that and hotel room description carefully notes lounge access not applicable with an upgrade

I quite like the angled view as now as well as looking directly across the river to the Palace , one can look down the river to the bridge etc , and at night the illuminated bastion across the river us a lovely sight
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Old Oct 27, 15, 9:10 pm
  #131  
 
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Stand corrected. The junior suite does show on the IHG website, but the j/s without club access is a category below the king superior with river view WITH lounge access, which is what I had booked. There should be a j/s with lounge access between the king superior club access and executive suite as the next 'up' but there isn't. Agree the view is really nice from this room. Overall, a good post thread though for AMBs who are looking to book the River King with club and hoping for an exec upgrade.
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Old Mar 24, 16, 10:10 am
  #132  
 
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I'm shall be visiting Budapest in a few months and have my AMB BOGO cert to use.

I'm trying to work out the best way of work an Exec suite with club access. They've arranged their rooms in such a way that you can't get upgraded free to it. Does anyone have any experience of what would happen if I booked the Exec Suite. I notice the next room is the Pres. suite.
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Old Mar 24, 16, 11:14 am
  #133  
 
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I am only a credit card Platinum and they treated me very well. I had booked a king river view for my first, paid night, then was using certificates and points for two more. They upgraded me to a junior suite the first night, then discovered it was sold for the following two nights so asked me to move. I liked the next room even better, a big room with two queens and a sofa river view. The junior suite did have a river view but it is an awkward shape with a small sitting squeezed into an alcove. By the way, the indoor pool is one of nicest to use of any hotel. Not showy, but serene with just right water temperature, nice dressing rooms. I did not pay for a Club upgrade, but the coffee and pastry counter in the lobby was perfect for breakfast, as was the lobby bar with really delicious appetizers. Great lobby for people watching, I liked it better than I would have the club lounge. It was all so reasonably priced, why pay for the Club?
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Old Mar 24, 16, 11:38 am
  #134  
 
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Originally Posted by Smythmeister View Post
I'm shall be visiting Budapest in a few months and have my AMB BOGO cert to use.

I'm trying to work out the best way of work an Exec suite with club access. They've arranged their rooms in such a way that you can't get upgraded free to it. Does anyone have any experience of what would happen if I booked the Exec Suite. I notice the next room is the Pres. suite.
True as the Suite text says Club included, but not if room is an upgrade, ... however that more affects just the RAs as Ambassadors don'thave rights to lounge access from room upgrades anyway.

IC Budapest is not one of the hotels individually listed in Ambassador t+c block to exclude certain rooms from upgrades. The generic text excempting all IC's regards Royal/Presidential Suites got removed sme time ago when the list of hotels with exclusions was enlarged.

However with only 1x Pres Suite if multiple Amb/RA elites book room cat below, only one canbe given the Presidential, so no guarantees for such an upgrade.

An RA v Ambassador woud reult in RA getting Pres Suite, whilst Ambassador w/o bogo free night would get over your bogo stay.
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Old Aug 23, 16, 10:22 am
  #135  
 
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My wife and I will be staying here two nights in a couple of weeks following a Viking River Cruise. We reserved a standard room, one night using a certificate. We are platinum with the credit card. What sort of upgrade might we expect? I understand that the hotel is near the port. What transportation might you suggest from the ship? What transportation will you suggest from the hotel to the airport?

Thanks in advance for the wonderful FT advice.

Mike (DaBears)
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