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GELLÉRT MEDICINAL BATHS, BUDAPEST, HUNGARY

Centuries ago thermal springs gushing forth at the foot of Gellért Hill created a muddy hollow where today´s baths are located. The first the open-air bath was named, for its muddy waters, Sárosfürdö (Muddy Bath).
In 1894, when construction of the Francis Joseph, later Szabadság (Liberty) Bridge commenced, the government expropriated and subsequently demolished the bath building. In 1902 the municipality of Budapest acquired ownership of the springs from the treasury and started to prepare a project for the construction of a new baths.
The actual construction of today´s Gellért Baths began in 1911 and the building, named St Gellért Medicinal Baths and Hotel, was inaugurated on 26 September 1918. The architects were Artúr SEBESTYÉN, Ármin HEGEDÜS and Izidor STERK.
The real attraction of this building, considering the many alterations undergone by the hotel, is the thermal bath still capable of evoking the milieu of the Hotel´s construction. Alongside those baths remaining from the Turkish period, the Saint Gellért Baths is one of the most internationally well known and most popular medicinal baths in Budapest. The exotic splendour, the glazed tiles and mosaics glittering with magnificent colour effects in a fabulous atmosphere heightened by the clouds of steam render the building a peerless gem of the bath architecture fashionable of the turn of the century. Although the architects began their careers under Ödön LECHNER´s influence, the master´s presence can no longer be discerned in this work. The main entrance, the corners and the bath entrance are crowned by baroque-like domes. Floral folk art motives decorate the entire building and reflect the geometricising tendencies of the ?Wiener Werkstätte?. The colourful and imposing 74-metre-long entrance hall covered by an arched glass roof - the transversal axis of the symmetrical ground-plan - evokes the atmosphere of Roman thermal baths. The whole complex is characterised by the abundance of a highly varied detail: the amazingly exquisite world of late Art Nouveau blends with the Neo-Baroque.(Sources: Csaba Meskó: Thermal baths, Our Budapest, 1998 and Budapest Architectural guide - 20th century, 6Bt, 1997)

www.budapestgyogyfurdoi.hu/hu/gellert/aktualis

© Horváth Edina, KÖH

KINDERGARTEN, ELEMENTARY-, SPECIAL PROFESSIONAL SCHOOL & RESIDENTIAL SCHOOL FOR THE BLIND, BUDAPEST, HUNGARY

Sándor BAUMGARTEN, as architect of the Cultural Ministry, designed and built hundreds of school buildings throughout the country. Following his collaboration with Ödön LECHNER, Baumgarten carried out projects in the manner of his master, using sinuous and decorative brick columns and divisions.
Consequently Baumgarten became the most prolific adherent and propagator of Lechner´s architectural style. Among his most significant buildings in Budapest is the School for the Blinds (1899-1904), which represents a transition between Neo-Gothic architecture and Lechner´s style. The interior design, especially the assembly hall and its stained-glass windows which numbers amonst the largest continuous painted glass surfaces in Hungary, are certainly worth a closer look. (Source: Budapest Architectural guide - 20th century, 6Bt, 1997)

www.vakisk.hu

© Papp Tímea, KÖH

GEOLOGICAL INSTITUTE, BUDAPEST, HUNGARY

The Institute, designed by Ödön LECHNER and built by Sándor HAUSZMANNN, serves the same function since its opening since 1899 - this naturally contributed to the conservation of the original appearance in a relatively intact state. The magnificent roof of ZSOLNAY tiles shining in several shades of blue can be overviewed from the roof terrace of the back annex of the building. One can feel the Oriental atmosphere inside the building: in the foyer, the stairways and the corridors. The way Lechner takes out motives from the small-scale world of embroidery and carving and shapes them into monumental spatial elements while preserving their original character is the culminating point of his brilliant style creation. (Source: Art Nouveau in Hungarian Way, Ödön Lechner, 1845-1914, Kulturális Örökségvédelmi Hivatal, 2004)

www.mafi.hu

© Horváth Edina, KÖH

DUAL LANGUAGE PRIMARY SCHOOL AND CATERING TECHNICAL SCHOOL

The facade of the school designed by Ármin HEGEDÜS in 1906, richly ornamented with undulating ribbons of brick and mosaic friezes guarantees it a place amongst the most beautiful schools of the capital of Hungary. The mosaics, by Zsigmond VAJDA, depict children's game from the turn of the century. The interior layout - including the furnishing - conform to expectations of healthy living habits and contemporary pedagogical principles. The architect saw these elements, and architecture itself, as important components of children's education. (Source: Budapest Architectural guide - 20th century, 6Bt, 1997)

www.dobsuli.hu

© Papp Tímea, KÖH

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