Searching for the Real Grand Budapest Hotel: 6 Amazing Real Life Hotels Worth the Journey

Grand Budapest Hotel Lookalikes

Searching for the Real Grand Budapest Hotel: 6 Amazing Real Life Hotels Worth the Journey
Searching for the Real Grand Budapest Hotel: 6 Amazing Real Life Hotels Worth the Journey
Searching for the Real Grand Budapest Hotel: 6 Amazing Real Life Hotels Worth the Journey

I walked out of Wed Anderson’s The Grand Budapest Hotel dying to take a trip to the fictional (but why?!) Grand Budapest, as it was in the 1930s. While there is no “real” Grand Budapest to journey to, production designers took inspiration from real historic hotels– and I’ve dug up some great lookalikes!

In no particular order, 6 amazing real-life hotels that will help fill the Grand Budapest shaped hole in your heart:

1. Taleon Imperial Hotel

Far from the alpine setting of the Budapest, the Taleon Imperial Hotel sits on the Moika River in St Petersburg, Russia. This luxury hotel boasts a salmon pink facade and predilection for red in the interior design that can’t help but bring to mind our imaginary hotel.

Searching for the Real Grand Budapest Hotel: 6 Amazing Real Life Hotels Worth the Journey
Searching for the Real Grand Budapest Hotel: 6 Amazing Real Life Hotels Worth the Journey
Searching for the Real Grand Budapest Hotel: 6 Amazing Real Life Hotels Worth the Journey
Searching for the Real Grand Budapest Hotel: 6 Amazing Real Life Hotels Worth the Journey

2. Grandhotel Pupp

Cited by the production designers as one of their sources of inspiration, the Grandhotel Pupp in Karlovy Vary, Czech Republic has retained much of it’s historic elegance, though sadly you’ll find neither 30s nor 60s design in the sleek and modern baths.

Searching for the Real Grand Budapest Hotel: 6 Amazing Real Life Hotels Worth the Journey
Searching for the Real Grand Budapest Hotel: 6 Amazing Real Life Hotels Worth the Journey
Searching for the Real Grand Budapest Hotel: 6 Amazing Real Life Hotels Worth the Journey
Searching for the Real Grand Budapest Hotel: 6 Amazing Real Life Hotels Worth the Journey

However, you will find a dead ringer for the Budapest’s deer overlook in the town of Karlovy Vary!

Searching for the Real Grand Budapest Hotel: 6 Amazing Real Life Hotels Worth the Journey

And, if you needed a little more inspiration to visit Karlovy Vary, check out the facade of the Bristol Palace Hotel, almost certainly a source of inspiration for the Grand Budapest:

Searching for the Real Grand Budapest Hotel: 6 Amazing Real Life Hotels Worth the Journey

3. Hotel Gellert

The stunning thermal baths are the draw at Hotel Gellert in Budapest, Hungary, as the guest rooms seem to have been mostly recently updated in the early 80s. Day visitors can pay to use the baths (which are actually run separately from the hotel), so stay elsewhere, bring your swim cap and hope that Ralph Fiennes will be there waiting for you ;)

Searching for the Real Grand Budapest Hotel: 6 Amazing Real Life Hotels Worth the Journey
Searching for the Real Grand Budapest Hotel: 6 Amazing Real Life Hotels Worth the Journey
Searching for the Real Grand Budapest Hotel: 6 Amazing Real Life Hotels Worth the Journey

4. Grandhotel Giessbach

The historic Grandhotel Giessbach sits high above Lake Brienz, in Switzerland, and offers access from the pier below via a funicular railway! (In retrospect, I ought to have prioritized the list and made this number 1, purely on the strength of the funicular.)

Searching for the Real Grand Budapest Hotel: 6 Amazing Real Life Hotels Worth the Journey
Searching for the Real Grand Budapest Hotel: 6 Amazing Real Life Hotels Worth the Journey
Searching for the Real Grand Budapest Hotel: 6 Amazing Real Life Hotels Worth the Journey
Searching for the Real Grand Budapest Hotel: 6 Amazing Real Life Hotels Worth the Journey
Searching for the Real Grand Budapest Hotel: 6 Amazing Real Life Hotels Worth the Journey

5. New York Palace

Part of what makes the Grand Budapest Hotel feel so grand is the multi-story open atrium lobby. The second Budapest hotel on the list, the New York Palace, has a similarly stunning atrium lobby. (If you like the atrium lobby concept, check out my post on West Baden Springs Hotel here in the US.)

Searching for the Real Grand Budapest Hotel: 6 Amazing Real Life Hotels Worth the Journey
Searching for the Real Grand Budapest Hotel: 6 Amazing Real Life Hotels Worth the Journey
Searching for the Real Grand Budapest Hotel: 6 Amazing Real Life Hotels Worth the Journey
Searching for the Real Grand Budapest Hotel: 6 Amazing Real Life Hotels Worth the Journey

6. Hotel Miradouro

If you’re looking for the 1960s vibe that Jude Law’s young writer encountered on his visit to the Grand Budapest, Hotel Miradouro in Porto, Portugal is just the ticket, with some pretty fantastic original 60s decor!

Searching for the Real Grand Budapest Hotel: 6 Amazing Real Life Hotels Worth the Journey
Searching for the Real Grand Budapest Hotel: 6 Amazing Real Life Hotels Worth the Journey
Searching for the Real Grand Budapest Hotel: 6 Amazing Real Life Hotels Worth the Journey
Searching for the Real Grand Budapest Hotel: 6 Amazing Real Life Hotels Worth the Journey
Searching for the Real Grand Budapest Hotel: 6 Amazing Real Life Hotels Worth the Journey
Searching for the Real Grand Budapest Hotel: 6 Amazing Real Life Hotels Worth the Journey

1 COMMENT

Comments are closed.