Hungary’s destination management professionals encourage you to “think big” when planning events in Budapest. Unforgettable MICE group experiences include searching for vampires at night, attending private galas at royal properties, and of course luxuriating in the city’s famous thermal baths.
Budapest, a new magnet for MICE groups, treats visitors to the delights of the Danube.
Central European cities are always among the favorite locales mentioned by MICE professionals who participate in Pro Sky’s annual Europe Destination Report. But comments submitted in response to the 2017 survey singled out Budapest for special praise. This easily accessible urban beauty has developed a reputation for catering to vistors’ wishes and offering luxury experiences at affordable rates. The combination is proving irresistible for group travel.
MICE activities: from royal galas to vampire hunts
One of Budapest’s more endearing traits is what survey respondents called its “everything is possible” vibe. And that means everything, says Ágnes Rácsai, managing director of Microcosmos DMC Budapest. She advises MICE professionals to ask about options for hosting gala dinners in one of the city’s historic buildings, even the Hungarian royalty’s former summer residence.
“Think big,” she says. “You can have a private concert with a full symphonic orchestra or a flash mob just for you!” Another option: organizing a carriage drive competition. You might even ask about securing a private rental of one of Budapest’s thermal baths for your group event.
Other group activities that will leave a lasting impression of Hungary include after-dark walking tours around Buda Castle in search of the vampires and caving tours through the Palvolgyi-Matyashegyi labyrinth that lies below Budapest’s streets. For a more relaxing experience, take an evening cruise on the Danube and admire the city’s sparkling lights along both shorelines.
Dining and delicacies: forget your diet on this holiday
The city, a gastronome’s (and pastry-lovers!) paradise, is home to four Michelin-starred restaurants and the world-famous Kozponti Vasarcsamok food market. But groups can do more here than just dine well and pick up a souvenir package of paprika. Activities include market tours followed by cooking lessons in a professional kitchen—and each member of the group is given recipes so they can recreate these culinary memories at home.
Of course, not all Hungarian gustatory delights are served on a plate. Some arrive in a wine glass. A group tour of the Tokaj or Etyek wine region offers the opportunity to visit family-run vineyards, enjoy wine tastings, and even experience dining in a wine cellar. Looking for a more urban experience and a bit of nightlife? Don’t miss the pub crawls through the “ruin bars” in Budapest’s historic Jewish quarter. Located in abandoned warehouses and factories that have come back to life as Hungarian hipster hangouts, these bars serve drinks in a funky, offbeat setting that capture’s the city’s youthful cultural mood.
Uniquely Hungarian hotels
River views create a memorable setting in some of Budapest’s best hotels for meetings and events. “From the Pest side, you can see the World Heritage-listed Buda Castle with its Royal Palace and Coronation Church,” Rácsai says. She advises that you’ll find the best views at the Marriott Budapest, “where all bedrooms and almost all meeting rooms have the view.”
Other notable hotels on the Pest side include the recently opened Ritz Carlton (“an excellent choice for smaller and mid-sized meetings”) and the Kempinski Hotel Corvinus Budapest (with new meeting facilities that can accommodate up to 200 people).
On the Buda side of the Danube, Rácsai recommends the recently renovated Hilton Budapest, which is located “within the protected Castle District” in an area “a bit away from busy downtown, with cobblestoned medieval streets.” She rates the hotel “excellent” and notes that it provides “fantastic possibilities” for small to large meetings.
- Hilton Budapest // website here
- Marriott Budapest // website here
- Kempinski Hotel Corvinus Budapest // website here
Added value: easygoing and easy to navigate
Both sides of the river offer easy proximity to the city’s major attractions, she adds. “What makes Budapest special and also ideal for MICE events is the way the city is laid out on both sides of the River Danube. It is safe, and many things are within easy walking distance, which safes on transfer time and hassle, not to mention expenses.”
With all these charms, it’s no wonder MICE professionals are eager to stage events in Budapest. The only question is how many of these experiences they can fit into the itinerary for one memorable group stay.
How to reach Budapest with your Group for your event?
Pro Sky can assist you in organizing your unforgettable travel experience in Budapest, Hungary. To explore our services and learn how our expertise can help make your events in Budapest a success, Contact us now
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