Home Authors Posts by Mihaela Lica Butler
Mihaela Lica Butler
Mamaison Hotel Andrassy Budapest, one of the best in class hotels in the metropolis, is now celebrated by guests, staff, and the media, as the best Budapest business hotel. Our fine property has received the Best Budapest Business Hotel Award 2014 from the Business Traveller Hungary Magazine.
A unique venue, Mamaison Andrássy is housed inside a historic Bauhaus landmark dating from 1937. The building, once an orphanage, is now a luxurious hotel, perfect for business travellers, but also, a magnet for romantic couples. Elegant and sophisticated, towering over the grand Andrássy Avenue, our hotel is an impeccable blend of stylish, airy spaces, decorated with contemporary furnishings, in cheery terra-cotta, gray, white and cream colors.
Timelessly elegant, our hotel exudes comfort at every turn: from its sumptuous lobbies, to the vast rooms, where super-comfortable beds invite you to linger between the walls endlessly, eventually relaxing with a glass of bubbly. But the world outside the walls beckons, with as many Hungarian adventures.
Before you go to explore the city, stop to experience culinary bliss at La Perle Noire Restaurant and Lounge, our crown gem, a place romantic enough to rival the hidden gardens of French royalty.
To stay at Mamaison Andrássy is to feel like royalty yourself. No other hotel in this class offers as much, for such fair prices. This commitment to your satisfaction, our constant quest to surpass expectations, is rewarded year after year, in your reviews, but also, in reviews written by experts, and, of course, with awards such as the one received, for the fourth year in a row, from the Business Traveller Hungary Magazine. Can you think of a better reason to celebrate that this?
Divoká Voda, a heaven for active travelers.
Postcard pretty Bratislava, known mainly for its iconic castle that stands on a rocky hill directly above the Danube, is a romantic city, close enough to the Little Carpathians to be also a favorite in Slovakia for active travelers. There’s so much to do here, that you will need at least a couple of weeks to enjoy the city, and the surrounding countryside, at their fullest.
Water sports and rope courses
Start with Divoká Voda, a favorite for activities like rafting, kayaking, boating, and wakeboarding, and even for paintball and beach volleyball. The resort offers babysitting during your training, teambuilding and sports programs. There is a kayak school, with classes for all levels, plus rentals for professionals and beginners alike. They have affordable aquazorbing and aquarolling for all ages, and even quad bikes, on a short, very safe, yet wild route. The little ones can even ride a pony.
Location: Vodné dielo, 850 09 Čunovo
Phone: +421 918 993 647
Action Park is an entertainment and adrenaline campus, offering a wealth of activities, some more challenging than others. The highlight of the park is its rope course, with 26 activities, 30 high rope obstacles and other great fun attractions. They also offer paintball tournaments; archery and crossbow shooting; a bungee trampoline, safe for both kinds and adults; zorbing, which is quite a trend in Eastern Europe; and even kiting.
Location: Shengenská ulica, Čunovo, 851 10 Bratislava
Phone: +421 904 22 33 33
Action Park zorbing, one of many exciting activities for Bratislava visitors. (Photo courtesy Action Park on Facebook)
For swimming in Bratislava, check out Letné kúpalisko Delfín, in Ružinov, a Summer swimming pool with water slide, showers, changing rooms, sauna, and playground for little guests.
Location: Ružová dolina 11
Phone: 02/534 155 53
Another excellent swimming pool, Letné kúpalisko Rosnička is surrounded by greenery, and offers pools for adults and children, plus a playground and beach volleyball.
Location: M. Schneidra Trnavského 2, 84101 Bratislava – Dúbravka
Phone: 02/643 609 60
Letné kúpalisko Tehelné pole is the most beautiful, and most famous swimming pool in Bratislava. This is also the nearest swimming area if you stay at Mamaison Residence Sulekova.
Location: Odbojárov 9, 83104 Bratislava
Phone: 02/443 728 28
Also for swimming, this time in a natural area, head to Zlaté piesky, northeast of the capital city Bratislava, in a quiet environment, surrounded by lush greenery. You will find crystal clear waters, beautiful sandy beach, plus 2 tennis clubs, 7 tennis courts with artificial lighting, 2 volleyball courts, 2 playgrounds, waterslide and mini golf.
Location: Zlaté piesky Bratislava – Ružinov
Phone: 02/442 570 18
The world from up high
Balony.sk takes you up in the sky, in a romantic ride with the clouds, to see the beautiful city from up high. Their sightseeing flights take about 1 hour, and are available rain or shine, year round. During the flight you are offered champagne, cold beer, soft drinks, and even food, depending on the package you booked.
Location: Pluhová 2, 831 03 Bratislava
Phone: +421 911 22 55 77
Commando for all ages
Devils Paintball Club offers military-style paintball in Kalinkovo, 10 km from Bratislava, in a pleasant forest. This is one of the largest paintball fields in Slovakia, an great fit for professionals, but suitable for newbies too. You will find bunkers, trenches, fortifications, tanks, buildings, and all kinds of natural obstacles. They have tents where you can relax when the weather is not that friendly, and even grills for a barbeque celebration after the game.
Location: (GPS) N48.06388° E017.24912°
Phone: +421 905 743 454
For more adrenaline-pumping team games resembling paintball, check out Laser Arena, the perfect venue to enjoy fun and action with your family. Unlike paintball, laser tag is not painful: children and the elderly can join in too. Game sessions are usually short – no more than 15 minutes – so no one will get tired.
Location: Prešovská 45, 821 02 Bratislava
Phone: +421 903 914 386
Horseback riding in Bratislava
For horseback riding at the foothill of the Little Carpathians, you could choose Jazdecká škola Elán Čierna Voda, which offers year-round riding courses for both adults and children, 7 days a week, under the guidance of experienced instructors. They have an indoor riding hall too, so you can come to practice rain or shine.
Location: Čierna Voda 611, 83107 Bratislava
Phone: +421 903 722 330
Another great place to learn how to ride, or just to enjoy leisurely horseback riding sessions, are the Stajne Epona stables. This is where you can escape from the city to the beautiful nature around Vajnory. Besides riding, the area is popular for agritourism, farming, cycling, roller skating and other activities.
Location: Rybničná 34, 83107 Bratislava
Phone: +421 905 880 333
Budapest is a year round destination, with outstanding events every season. This Summer, you will enjoy some of the most exciting festivals on both sides of the Danube.
Our first recommendation is a treat for your taste: the Budai Gourmet Festival in Millenaris Park. More than 25 of Hungary’s top restaurants will showcase some of their best culinary creations. This year, the festival begins May 30, 2014 and ends June 1, 2014.
Also from May 31 to June 1st, don’t miss the Belvárosi Fesztivál, which take place on Erzsébet tér, Szabadság tér and Zrínyi utca. It is a free music festival, where you can enjoy music in all genres, from live jazz, to rock, pop and folk.
If you like beer, don’t miss Főzdefeszt, the craft-beer festival in Mikszáth Kálmán tér and Szabó Ervin tér, from June 6 to June 8, 2014. 18 microbreweries from all over the country will participate in this edition.
Another beer festival, Budavári Sörfesztivál, takes place at the Buda Castle from June 12 to June 15, 2014, at the Royal Palace’s Oroszlános and Hunyadi courtyards, and the Savoyai terrace. You get to choose from over 200 domestic and international beers.
The cultural quest for the sun culminates in June with the Budapest Summer Festival, with live music at the Margaret Island Open-air Stage and Városmajor Open-air Stage. Don’t miss it if you stay at one of our hotels between June 14 and August 20, 2014.
Don’t miss the Danube Carnival between June 15 and June 23, 2014, an outstanding celebration of art, music and dance, which brings together contemporary dancers, international artists and traditional Hungarian folk dancers. Venues: Danube Promenade, Vörösmarty Square, Margaret Island.
Summers are always filled with beer festivals. Another important event of this kind is the Czech Beer Festival in Budapest, this year at its 6th edition. 25 different Czech breweries will come to tame your thirst at the Városháza Park, between June 17 and June 30, 2014.
For culture buffs, the Night of the Museums on June 22nd is a must. Participating museums, which keep their doors open till 2:30 am, include the Hungarian National Museum, the Museum of Fine Arts, the Budapest History Museum, the House of Terror Museum, the Hungarian National Gallery and many others.
Festivals and special events aside, if you would rather enjoy a lazy walk in the sunshine, or an active day in nature, you don’t need to “escape” Budapest to find the perfect spot. Hike up the Janoshegy to get closer to the burning ball of gas in the sky.
If you want a tan, the Budapest Plage in Castle Hill, an urban beach very popular with the locals, will provide just what you need, if you don’t mind the crowds.
At the heart of Margaret Island, Palatinus Strandfürdő is powered by thermal springs. Albeit touristy, this is the place to come to unwind after a busy week, sightseeing the historic heart of Budapest.
To celebrate 10 years of outstanding service for our guests at Mamaison Hotel Le Regina Warsaw, Chef Paweł Oszczyk created an outstanding gourmet menu, available every evening in our La Rotisserie Restaurant.
Fillet of pike perch roasted with potato crust, cherry tomato, ginger and fresh coriander salsa.
The gourmet menu features 10 mouthwatering Paweł Oszczyk, in bite-size portions, to give you the opportunity to savor each dish without feeling full, or overwhelmed by quantities. Instead, you get to focus on the sophisticated, delicate flavors, blended in every dish with great gusto, to create a tasting menu fit for royalty:
- Pastrami of duck with herbs leaves, foie gras slivers, coffee and caramelized soy sauce
- Tuna fish carpaccio coated with oriental spices on fennel salad, passion fruit dressing
- Ragout of scallops with pine nuts, cauliflower and raisins, capers and spring onion beurre blanc
- Velvet creamy artichokes soup with crunchy egg and summer truffle
- Cod fish and asparagus ravioli with warm caviar vinaigrette
- Fillet of pike perch roasted with potato crust, cherry tomato, ginger and fresh coriander salsa
- Prime of guinea fowl baked in cabbage leaves, dry morel sauce
- Roasted loin of venison marinated in vodka with honey, beetroot with elderflower, celery and pear, plum sauce with Tasmanian pepper
- Chocolate cannelloni with physalis sherbet
- Ravioli with goat’s cheese and rosemary, strawberry and Earl Grey sherbet
10 conversation-stopping, melt-in-your-mouth dishes, each symbolizing a year of activity for Mamaison Hotel Le Regina Warsaw, are paired with fine wines selected by our Sommelier Champion of Poland 2013, Andrzej Strzelczyk. Speaking of wines, May 22nd is an occasion for connoisseurs to participate in a unique tasting event, which will emphasize the best wines of the last decade, with award-winning wines like . Champagne Egly, Barolo, Riesling Auslese Max Fer Richter, and many others.
For information and reservations, please call +48 22 531 60 00.
Tandemugrás "Millennium Tandem Team" Tandem Skydiving Hungary
Budapest is a city of outstanding beauty, with remarkable architecture, and important tourist landmarks, well advertised in travel brochures, and guides of all kinds. Besides its over-mediatized baths and spas, music festivals, cuisine, and cultural events, Budapest offers visitors a wealth of other attractions, not many people know about. Although the city is not seen as a Mecca for adrenaline junkies, Budapest does offer a lot to those who enjoy more “extreme” activities.
Aquaworld Budapest – Ramada Resort
Already famous with locals and tourists, Budapest’s Aquaworld offers the ultimate family experience, but it is also a must for thrill seekers. Strip down to your swimsuit, and book a lesson at the surf school – yes, you can learn how to ride the waves in one of Europe’s most romantic inland cities. Those in search of treetop thrills will find enough to challenge their skills at the Adventure Park, part of the same Ramada Aquaworld.
Location: Íves út 16.
Phone: +36 1 231 3760
Challengeland Kalandpálya is closer to nature, in a real Hungarian forest, and offers a richer experience for all ages, including nighttime climbing, individual rope course for all ages; dual rope course, for adults and children to race together; racing rope course; an earthy obstacle course known as the Giant Labyrinth; a log castle, ideal for family fun; and so much more.
Location: Konkoly Thege M. Út 21.
Phone: +36 20 599 8501
Similar to Ramada’s Adventure Park, and the Challengeland Kalandpálya, the Orczy Kalandpark is especially recommended for younger thrill seekers. It has several racing courses designed exclusively for children, as well as activities for adults, including camping, laser tag, and even go-karting.
Location: Orczy út 1.(Nagyvárad tér)
Phone: +36 20 236 1214
eXbox Adventure Park, is the largest extreme indoor adventure park in Budapest, so you can enjoy adrenaline rush rain or shine. It’s not the same as flying along the wires in nature, but you are still suspended far above the ground, and you have 20 obstacles challenging your completion of the course. If a ropes course is not enough, you can test your climbing technique, conditioning, and technical skills at the climbing wall. Inside the same park, the Lab Skatepark challenges BMX, roller skaters, and skateboarders. You will discover many other adventures for young and old.
Location: Hunyadi János út 4.
Phone: +36 30 232 5108
Nothing quite compares with the intense rush provided by a 200 km/h free fall and parachute descent from 3500 metres, and yes, Budapest can accommodate cloud riders too! Tandem Skydiving offers the closest skydiving location to Budapest, at Dunaújváros (Kisapostag) Airport, about an hour drive from the city center. The company offers transfer to customers, plus excellent prices, and even your own tandem skydive video if you want to keep the memory alive.
Location: Dunaújváros Airport Highway no. 6 – at 76th km (close to Kisapostag)
Phone: +36 20 341 2704
One of the newest attractions for active pursuits in Budapest is the G1 Kart Center, a facility designed for experienced drivers, who can test their skills driving GT5 go karts in a sound proof, safe environment. Drivers wear professional racing overalls and helmets for safety, but also for a complete, professional experience.
Location: Róbert Károly körút 54-58.
Phone: +36 30 2390743
Budapest offers many other opportunities for active travelers who enjoy nature. There are several companies that offer canoeing and kayaking tours on the Danube, wakeboarding, bicycle tours of the city, and especially hiking on the Buda side of the Danube River. No matter who you are, no matter what outdoor pursuits you like, there are thousands of different ways to discover this noble city.
Earlier this month, on a beautiful Sunday, Mamaison All-Suites Spa Hotel Pokrovka Moscow enjoyed the stellar visit of Sati Kazanova, who was the celebrity guest of the “Wedding School,” a special event organized by the Wedding magazine and Wedding Factory agency.
Sati Kazanova in a wedding gown by Vanilla.
Hotel Pokrovka proved to be an ideal venue for the event, not only for its central location, but also for its outstanding interiors, fit for the most demanding brides and their parties. Elegant and stylish, eccentric, arty and eclectic, adorned with palatial furnishings, and valuable artworks, the hotel offers everything for brides and grooms, and then some. Within its walls, you will find one of Moscow’s most prestigious pampering temples, Spa by Algotherm; and a culinary sanctuary, Meat&More, which recently reopened for the season, with an exuberantly new, contemporary menu, inspired by local traditions, but also reflecting international trends.
Sati Kazanova photographed inside Mamaison All-Suites Spa Hotel Pokrovka Moscow
Participants at the Wedding School event had the opportunity to tour the hotel, discovering its palatial rooms, perfect to satisfy any luxury-desiring sensibilities. More than the tour, the Wedding School was an opportunity to taste wedding sweets by confiserie JennieRose (and an amazing wedding cake), and to leave with valuable organic cosmetics from Melvita.
The wedding cake was provided by confiserie JennieRose.
The programme included a gorgeous themed show, workshops on how to plan a wedding budget, lectures on the latest wedding trends in Moscow and abroad, photography tips from some of the most prestigious local photographers, recent trends in wedding decor by White Décor, raffles and prizes, and much more.
Sati Kazanova talks about wedding flower arrangements.
(Photo: © maxoidos - Fotolia.com)
Prague is a city of diversity, with rich history, a fascinating art scene, and, most importantly for tourists, a vibrant festival calendar, encompassing everything from gastronomy, to fashion, film, music, and religion. During the Spring and Summer of 2014, Prague will celebrate its multicultural diversity with passion and panache. This is the ultimate festival guide for 2014, to inspire you to celebrate with the city, and with Mamaison Hotels & Residencies.
The Holešovice Fashion Market announced its April event to last between Friday 25 and Sunday 27. This is a great occasion for travelers, as well as for local residents, to buy original fashion and accessories directly from local designers and manufacturers. There will be fashion shows, music, and dance, to enhance the atmosphere, and to make the experience complete for everyone.
Location : HOLEŠOVICE MARKET, Bubenské nábřeží 306 Praha 7 – Holešovice
If you happen in Prague on the last day of April you will witness a unique local festival, with pagan roots: Paleni Cardojenic, translated, the “night of the witches.” The festival marks the last night of Winter, and the beginning of the Spring. This is the night when the witches come out to bring misfortune into the world. According to the local tradition, burning witch effigies on a pyre would keep their malefic magic away. Several fires will be lit on Petrin Hill to mark the tradition on April 30. Many restaurants, cafes, and cultural institutions around the city will organize special events to mark the date too. One of the largest gatherings, with contests, food and live music, takes place in the Ladronka Park.
Location: Petrin Hill, Ladronka Park, and others.
Prague Spring Festival (Photo © Jiří Bělohlávek )
The 69th edition of the Prague Spring Music Festival kicks off May 12, to last till June 2, 2014. Several venues across the city will stage competitions, concerts and other events. A special festival concert by the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra will be held Monday, March 24, in advance of the official opening date in May.
This is the most important cultural event of the Spring, and a must for music lovers. Among the highlights of the festival:
- Lithuanian soprano Violeta Urmana will appear at Prague Spring on May 24 in a programme featuring the music of Mahler and Strauss. Venue: Municipal House – Smetana Hall.
- The Hilliard Ensemble will be ending its professional career in 2014, and Prague Spring may be your last chance to see them together in concert: May 30, at Rudolfinum – Dvořák Hall.
- The Konvergence chamber ensemble will be performing at St Agnes’ convent, on May 19. In the programme: five world premieres, including Quartet No. 3 by Pavel Zemek-Novák and Viola Walk by Peter Graham, among others.
Other stellar participants include the Vienna Philharmonic, the Bamberg Symphony Orchestra, the Polish National Radio Symphony Orchestra, and the Prague Symphony Orchestra.
The Czech Beer Festival is at its 7th edition in 2014. It will take place between May 14 and May 31, at the Areál Výstaviště exhibition grounds. The festival will bring together some of the best local breweries, showcasing over 70 brands of top quality Czech beer. But there’s more to the festival than good libations. Beers will be paired with equally rewarding cuisine, and the atmosphere will be enhanced by local bands, performing live, every day.
Dubbed “the most beautiful fringe festival in the world” by Tony Lankester, CEO of the National Arts Festival in South Africa, the Prague Fringe Festival offers a diverse programme, of theatre, comedy, music and entertainment. This is an international event, with plenty to see for English-speaking guests. Participating venues: Divadlo Kampa, Divadlo Inspirace, A Studio Rubín, Divadlo Na Prádle, and other small Prague theaters. The Fringe Festival takes place from May 23, to May 31, 2014.
The Prague International Music Festival United Islands celebrates its 11th edition in 2014, and it already ranks as the city’s largest open-air music festival. The festival opens with the traditional Club Night on June 11, and it will last till June 24, 2014. Participants include Nylon Jail, Vložte kočku, Voila!, Lanugo, Kieslowski, Palermo, Love Earth and many others. The complete programme is available online at http://unitedislands.cz/
Location: Kampa, Střelecký ostrov and Kinsky Garden.
Metallica By Request: Aerodrome Festival only lasts one day in July, but it is set to attract thousands of fans at the Incheba open air arena. Fans of heavy metal will see Alice In Chains, Children Of Bodom, Kvelertak in concert, before the stage will be taken by Metallica, whose performance will be the peak of the event on July 8, 2014.
Location : Incheba Open Air Areál Výstaviště 69, Praha 7
One of the top festivals in Prague, the Summer Festivities of Early Music are celebrating their 15th edition this year, between July 14 and August 6. The festival is focused on Medieval music, and takes place at several historic locations, including the Convent of St. Agnes of Bohemia, the Troja Chateau, the Břevnov Monastery and the Prague Castle.
The International Festival of Contemporary Circus and Theatre Letní Letná gathers together new circus companies from around the world in a unique celebration, which embraces a wide variety of cultural and artistic manifestations, including street art, photography, concerts, open air shows, and much more. The festival has something in store for everyone: there will be at least five shows per day for children. If you are in Prague between August 17 and September 2, 2014, don’t miss it.
Location: Letná Park
UPDATE: Now a Private Label Hotels group property, Mamaison Business & Conference Hotel Ostrava changed its name back to Imperial Hotel Ostrava in 2015, to reflect the long history and tradition of the hotel. While it no longer operates under the Mamaison brand, the hotel remains in the CPI Hotels family, which includes Mamaison Hotels & Residences hotels, four-star Clarion congress hotels, Spa & Kur Hotels, Buddha-Bar Hotel Prague, three-star Fortuna hotels, and the Private Label Hotels group.
Built by the renowned Moravian-Ostrava company Mihatsch & Ulrich, Hotel Imperial Ostrava opened officially on January 1, 1904. This was the dream of Josef Petzak, who thus developed one of the first-class hotels in this part of the world, a legacy we treasure today greatly, and our passion shows in the dedication we have for our guests, the unsurpassed customer service, that makes each and every one of you feel like home within the walls of our hotel, and the luxurious facilities at your disposal.
Just like the first owners, Josef and Anna Petzak, offered their guests elegant accommodations at the beginning of the XXth century, today, Hotel Imperial Ostrava offers comfortable rooms, ideal for every vacationer’s dream. Whether you seek for luxury interiors for your business needs, or for relaxed spaces to rekindle romance, the Imperial is ready to welcome you wholeheartedly. The lush, almost decadent interiors of the hotel, are as inviting as the sophisticated boudoir of a blue-blooded countess, albeit with a contemporary twist.
Just as it stood back in 1904, “in the best place in the city”, today’s Hotel Imperial enjoys the same ideal location, close to some of the city’s most popular attractions, at heart of Ostrava’s city centre, right at the start of the pedestrian zone. Your days will be filled with new activities, and new discoveries, while the nights will offer pampering rest in queen-sized beds, on soft cushions, under luxury linen covers.
Hotel Imperial Ostrava is more than accommodation, but for now, these images speak for themselves. As this year we celebrate the hotel’s 110th birthday, we will follow up with detailed information about the hotel’s outstanding gourmet restaurants, Legend and La Brasserie, and we will keep you posted about the events organized at the hotel, and everything else in Ostrava that will make your vacation here beyond memorable.
Spa by Algotherm, the gem at Mamaison Hotel Pokrovka, ranks among the top wellness destinations in Moscow. A luxury hotel par excellence, Pokrovka offers some of the most photographed, elegant, suites in the capital, and exclusive amenities, fit for blue-blooded royalty. Along Pokrovka’s industry acclaimed facilities, Spa by Algotherm meets all the requirements, when it comes to luxury, pampering, and style.
The spa is an urban oasis, with excellent natural algotherapy treatments for face and body, thalassotherapy, hammam, Russian sauna, and even a Moroccan Rhassoul steam room, alongside 8 treatment rooms and other facilities. There’s nothing more rewarding after an active day in the city, than to get pampered at Mamaison’s exclusive Spa by Algotherm.
This sanctuary of elegance and serenity follows all the treatment principles that made Algotherm a preferred world brand for algotherapy and marine cosmetics. As you walk in, you are embraced by discrete aromas that enhance the tranquil atmosphere of the spa, and provide the ideal environment, essential to set the mood that will help you regain harmony between body and soul.
With focused attention on all-encompassing wellness, Spa by Algotherm brings mind, body and spirit into balance with natural European and Asian spa treatments, luxurious pampering packages, and even natural beauty treatments for your hair. All spa treatments are designed by expert therapists, with a better you in mind. Based on your individual needs and wishes, you will enjoy signature treatments and mini-packages for total relaxation and stress relief, while toning, shaping up, rejuvenating and detoxing in the exclusive tropical Polynesian corner, with original Oriental SPA massages and other programmes, just for you.
Spa by Algotherm is the perfect retreat for a summer of beauty and wellness. The comprehensive range of treatments includes body shaping, anti-cellulite wraps, couple’s rituals, classic and exotic massages, and beauty treatments with professional marine cosmetics.
During your visit at the spa, don’t miss the bio bar, which serves herbal teas, fresh fruit juices and smoothies, and even cocktails.
For your health fix to be complete, we offer some of the best yoga therapy sessions in the city, to help reach the ultimate physical and spiritual harmony, based on ancient practices. Book a private lesson with a professional master at the spa, to take advantage of the full health benefits of the individual programs and classes, planned according to your level of training, health and physiological features.
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