Hilton Vienna Danube Hotel Refurbishment Complete

Hilton has completed its refurbishment of the Hilton Vienna Danube Hotel located 20 minutes from the airport and 7 minutes by metro from the city centre.  The hotel has 367 rooms and guests can enjoy Austrian and international dishes made from local ingredients at its Waterfront Restaurant.

Hilton Vienna Danube Hotel

The hotel has a spacious terrace and the Pier 269 Bar & Lounge.  There is also a new Hilton Fitness by Precor, sauna and outdoor pool.

For more information visit Hilton Vienna Danube Hotel.

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Square 2 Design Eco Concept Home for Danube Delta

Square 2 Design, a Romanian design group, recently revealed an eco-friendly concept home for the Danube Delta. As you can see, the eco-house features a wall covered in foliage and an indoor greenhouse, making the garden an integral part of the home itself, rather than an addition.

Square 2 Design

The group claims that the interiors and furniture are constructed from biodegradable and recycled materials, making them environmentally friendly too.  I think in the past Romania’s had a bad reputation in the West for being a backward country but this sort of innovative design and eco-thinking demonstrates just how forward-thinking this country can be.

You can find out more about Square 2 Design here.

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15th Danube Carnival in Budapest

Between the 12th and the 20th of June Budapest and the Duna Art Company will host the Danube Carnival, the most colourful cultural series of events of the Hungarian summer, for the fifteenth time. The Danube Carnival is a ten-day long multi-cultural festival which includes a chain of international dance and music programs. The carnival atmosphere will be enhanced by the various forms of artistic expression involved including folk dance and music, contemporary dance, world music, symphonic and brass music. In addition to the Hungarian traditional and professional dance groups, the carnival will incorporate many European performers from outside Hungary as well as guest ensembles from overseas. The traditions of the Visegrad Countries are also highlighted.

Danube Festival Budapest Hungary

This year 11 foreign ensembles with nearly 400 artists will be performing at the carnival which will span Budapest and beyond. The sites: Vörösmarty Square, Margaret Island Open Air Theatre, Ethnographic Museum, Heritage House, Mátyásföld, Békásmegyer, Budakalász, Üröm.

The Gala concert at the Margaret Island Open Air Stage will take place on the 18th of June.  The show will feature nearly four hundred international and Hungarian artists with the Hungarian State Folk Ensemble and the Duna Art Ensemble.

While on the 19th of June, in the heart of Budapest, more than 1000 participants will join the Carnival Parade – defiling to the Vörösmarty Square the dance and music groups celebrate the Carnival with a non-stop dance gala.

If you find yourself in Budapest during this festival, make sure you check it out!


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Budapest Spring Festival Holiday Offer

Nigel Kennedy
Nigel Kennedy

Budapest’s premier cultural event, the Budapest Spring Festival, takes place this year from 19 March until 5 April, which still gives visitors chance to take advantage of the special hotel and flights deals through the Budapest Winter Invitation.

There are 50 city centre hotels that are offering free nights up until 31 March, ranging from 3* to 5*, making Budapest a great choice for an early spring break. The festival is one of the top cultural festivals in Europe with programmes ranging from exhibitions and classical concerts to opera, ballet and contemporary dance performed at amazing venues throughout the city.

Highlights this year include Nigel Kennedy and the Danubia Orchestra Obuda presenting a unique evening of Bach and Ellington on 26 March at the Palace of Arts; the magical Ballet Flamenco de Andalucía at the Thalia Theatre on various dates; Wagner’s Parsifal at the State Opera House on 2 April and the Royal Danish Ballet at the State Opera House on 19 March and Palace of Arts on 20 March.

There is also the chance to see Danish ‘nomadic theatre group’, Hotel Pro Forma on 22 March whose productions move across the genres of theatre, opera, visual arts and concert and are offer audiences a unique and exciting experience. They will be performing Operation: Ofero – a visual opera in three movements drawing upon the myths of Orpheus and Eurydice.

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Orient Express Ceases Operation

Danube Express

After 125 years the original Orient Express service will grind to a halt for good on 12 December when the famous name will disappear from European timetables.  During its heyday in the 1930s, the Orient Express ran between Paris and Istanbul with through coaches from Calais and Ostende for the benefit of UK travellers.  Now the Danube Express will take up this mantle with a variety of journeys offered in May, June and September to and from Istanbul.

Istanbul is set to top travel hot lists next year after being named European Capital of Culture for 2010 and this coincides with the Danube Express’ arrival in the city.  Reviving the Golden Age of rail and waiting to whisk passengers on a relaxed voyage of discovery is the Danube Express’ Istanbul Odyssey, an exotic overland adventure between London and Istanbul. Offering an altogether more civilised method of travel along this route than hitherto with deluxe en suite compartments, the Danube Express is ideal for those in search of a slice of nostalgia.

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Explore Eastern Europe on the Danube Express

Danube-ExpressAs interest in rail holidays continues to rise, the Danube Express has introduced its most flexible service yet, with independent and fully escorted holidays both offered.  Among the highlights of the train’s all-new programme for 2010 is a series of grand tours that are reminiscent of a bygone era yet boasting many of the comforts of modern day living.

Launched in the Autumn 2008, the gleaming Danube Express is a distinctive ‘hotel on wheels’ that whisks passengers on a voyage of discovery through stunning scenery to the heart of some of Europe’s most beautiful cities and destinations of architectural heritage.

danube-express-1The 2010 Danube Express programme will include a choice of four Fully Escorted Holidays and six Danube Express Journeys with departure dates in May, June and September.  Danube Express Journeys include an itinerary with a full sightseeing programme, all meals plus complimentary wine, beer and soft drinks and the services of a Train Manager. New for 2010, guests can opt for a Combined Journey, which joins together two or more journeys to create a greater adventure.  Fully Escorted Holidays additionally include rail or air travel from the UK, half-board accommodation in 4* hotels, additional sightseeing, transfers, porterage and the services of a Tour Manager throughout. There is also the option available at a supplement, to travel from or return to the UK by rail, for those who prefer not to fly.

A blend of modern comfort and traditional service, the Danube Express offers a relaxing way to tour Central Europe without the fuss of formal dress, so often required on cruise trains.  Deluxe twin compartments with lower beds and an en suite shower and WC offer that touch of extra comfort.  For single travellers, the nostalgia-inducing Classic compartments exude the charm and elegance of an earlier age.

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