Whereas the riverside hotels on the Pest embankment rejoice in their ground-level, postcard view over the Danube to the world heritage Castle District, at the Hilton on the Buda side it is a mirror image and their diners get to look down from on high into Pest.

Outside our window on this recent Sunday, just 15 metres away is a phantasmagorical section of the Fisherman’s Bastion, all conical roofs, towers, turrets, curving stairs, gargoyles and metal lamp-posts. The postcard racks are so close you can see what the pictures are, and the tourists – striking odd poses for cameras – are apparently oblivious to the diners’ stares from behind the tinted glass.


To the side of the bastion is a clear view over the Danube to the once-empire-ruling Parliament building and the once-commmunist-rulers’ White House” over in Pest. Up the river are Margaret island and bridge, and further beyond the Megyeri bridge and distant hills.

Near Arpád híd on the Pest side is the new Duna Aréna, where the FINA World Championships are under way and which may explain the busier-than-usual, sight-seeing boat traffic on the river. Overhead, aircraft are descending regularly to Liszt Ferenc airport. It is a serene Sunday scene, rendered silent by the soundproof windows, giving the outside world a dreamy quality.

Out the side windows of the ICON are a patina-green statue of a monk and some of the remains of the 13th-century Dominican church and monastery that were interwoven into the modern fabric of the five-star Hilton.

just right, then, to relax and enjoy the Hilton Sunday Brunch. This is an all-you-can-eat buffet of authentic Hungarian and international flavours, plus sparkling Törley wine, a further wine selection, beer and soft drinks such as the house lemonade with lemon and lime slices and blueberries.

Executive chef Csaba Horváth has been at the Hilton for 30 years or so and changes his selection each week. Soups today are parsnip cream with seed wafer, and “Újházi” chicken.


A carving station has roasted turkey with fine nut-fine herb sauce, the latter to make sure that the meat doesn’t taste dry. Other meat treats include the chicken skewer with ginger and coconut, tenderloin ragout with asparagus and goose liver, and veal medallions with leek and paprika ragout.

On the salad side are selections including tuna, bulgur and shrimp salads, accompanied with roast duck breast, beef, assorted cold fish, and stuffed chicken in sesame with blueberry jam. The horseradish sauce is a nice addition.

Steak potatoes, saffron risotto with crayfish, steamed buttered vegetables and a hot fish selection fill out the buffet.

Add in the tempting ice-cream and desserts, plus various fresh fruit and cheeses, and it adds up to a waist-expanding experience. All-you-can-eat can be a bit of a trap, albeit a pleasant one.

A pianist runs through his extensive repertoire of pop and standards, and there are more than enough waiters quick to replenish emptying glasses. Plus that killer view.

Hilton Budapest

Hess András tér 3

Castle District

Tel.: (061) 889-6600

Sunday Brunch

HUF 9800

Children 4-14 years HUF 4900

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