The Darker side of Budapest!

So, I always tend to go on a bit of a design hunt, when I am away on holidays, looking for cool bars, cafes and restaurants, and Budapest certainly did not disappoint. You might not consider this European city to be a cultural and creative design hub, but it is AMAZING!

When myself and my other half, Shane decided to go to Budapest, we did quite a bit of research before we left and felt that we had a good grasp of the areas that we wanted to visit. Budapest’s District V, somewhat resembling our Dublin 2 and District VII, a much cooler version of Dublin 8.

Wandering through the near deserted streets of District VII during the day, we were confronted with an old run down area, with near derelict buildings, lining the narrow cobbled streets. A far cry from what we had read about the area before we left. But low and behold……. the night put a whole different slant on it.

The area came to life with ruin bars and small drinking holes, opening their doors…….

A lot of the near derelict tenement buildings now housed multi storey bars, late bars and nightclubs. They were furnished with a mix of new & second hand furniture, skip finds and art installations that were so surreal, it felt like I was dreaming.

There are way too many amazing bars to mention, but here are two of my favourites and a must see when you go to Budaspest…….


A little away from the cobbled narrow streets, Instant bar boosts surrealism in a somewhat distrubing way……

Greated by a suspended bear in a van, only gives a little glimmer of whats waiting inside.

Once inside, you enter a world of flying fish, hundreds of white rabbits running across the ceiling, suspended glitter pigs and life size characters from old Hungarian cartoons. This one is not for the faint hearted…..


Bang smack in the middle of District VII, Doboz is somewhat different to Instant but surreal non the less. Walking through the entrance archway into a large open courtyard, the first thing I saw was a giant King Kong like sculpture with bright red eyes, peering down at me from a large tree. Not something you’d see in the middle of a pub in Dublin. 🙂

Every area in this night club is quirky and different, with little or no relationship to the previous. From uber contemporary bars to chilled out seating areas, this place has something for everyone. And there’s no rushing for last orders, Doboz opens until 6am on weekends, for those party animals out there. 🙂


Have you been on any design inspired trips lately, or found some really cool places while you were away? Comment in the box below this post and LET US KNOW!!!!!!

Be Creative……

Joanne & the Think Contemporary team.