When we were putting together our January/February issue with a special feature on locations we dubbed Hidden Treasures, the options really were limitless. Yes there is always a lot happening in Los Angeles and New York, but we found that development is rampant in even the most secondary of markets.
Besides the seven places we featured, growth has extended to the Rust Belt where places not usually associated with trendiness like Pittsburgh and Cleveland are seeing an uptick in boutique, hip brands like Ace Hotels and Kimpton, respectively. (Disclaimer: I’m from western Pennsylvania and lived in Cleveland, so I say this out of love.) North Carolina, too, is rich with development in places such as Asheville and Charlotte. And its neighbor to the south, Charleston, is also on the shortlist of places to watch.
One of those cities that has found itself on people’s radar and remains buzzing is Budapest. The Hungarian capital has undergone infrastructure improvements, plus its culturally rich location continues to drive interest.
“In recent years, the center of Budapest has undergone significant renovations and refurbishments, which results in an international quality city with rich culture, unique atmosphere, and all these at an affordable price level,” says Attila Radvanszki, a consultant for Horwath HTL.
According to HVS, Budapest has seen a 13.5 percent growth in tourist arrivals in the last three years. Currently, there are 241 hotels (19,374 rooms) in Budapest with development still catching up with a handful of hotels in the pipeline, including a 192-room Ritz-Carlton, the 240-key Private Palace, an upscale airport hotel set to open in 2017, a Meininger hotel planed for 2018, and the 107-room Small Grand Budapest Hotel, located downtown, scheduled to open early next year.