Great programs and new wonders in Budapest

Three special buildings in the service of tradition and education are the latest attractions at City Park, namely, the Hungarian House of Music, the Museum of Ethnography, and the House of the Hungarian Millennium. These are worth a visit even if you’re only taking a short walk around the park, but you can get even more out of the experience if you explore their exhibitions and events.

Music is the universal language of emotion and is with us at every moment of our lives. Traditions give our lives a historical context. The new museums showcase these universal values through their exhibitions and programs. The genius in the design of the two buildings is striking both at first sight and inside, as both are a departure from the architecture we know in our everyday lives.

The organic architectural concept of the Hungarian House of Music built next to Lake Városligeti between Vajdahunyad Castle and the ice rink, blurs the line between nature and manmade structures. Under the unique roof structure, next to the huge glass walls, and even inside the building, visitors feel as if they’re walking in nature. Japanese architect Sou Fujimoto, who designed the building, merged manmade structures with nature by symbolizing it in the leaf-shaped decorative elements used in the suspended ceiling. A special floating roof structure based on the image of a sound wave has almost 100 lightwells to channel natural light into the interior spaces. It’s no wonder that the structure won the 2019 London International Property Awards for the best public building in the world. In 2020, it was awarded the top prize at the US Music Cities Awards as the world’s best music-themed real estate development.

The interior of the building is also unique. The lowest floor houses an exhibition on the language of music and the treasures of Hungarian folk music, as well as a sound dome that invites visitors to experiment with everyday sounds. The parking level is dedicated to performing arts, concert halls, and an open-air stage, while the upstairs level is allocated to the library and educational programs.

The House of the Hungarian Millennium hosts an interactive exhibition about the “Golden Age” of Budapest, which refers to the years between 1867-1914 and the bustling cultural life of that time. During this era a metropolis emerged, and the local bourgeoisie was established. This thriving and prosperous city became one of Europe’s leading capitals. The atmosphere and spirit of the House of the Hungarian Millennium exhibits a harmony between fine and applied arts, history, heritage, literature, and gastronomy, to meet the expectations of today’s visitors.

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