Saturday, November 9, 2013

Princess Palace Update -- Post-Apocalyptic Bunker Stage

There is news on the flat renovation front,  dear readers.  After a lengthy bidding process, I finally settled on a team that agreed to renovate my 1940s Bauhaus flat in the palace quarter of downtown Budapest (inner eighth district).  The price is a very reasonable 7.7 million Hungarian forints (nearly $35,000).  It is a full renovation, including a completely new floor (with concrete foundation and solid oak Swedish floors), underfloor heating in the bathroom, a custom-made shower, completely new heating, plumbing, and electricity systems, refinished and painted walls, a wardrobe (without shelves), bathroom floor tiles, sliding inner doors, a new bathroom wall and an enlarged bedroom door, three new windows, new French doors that open onto the terrace (replacing the entrance doors), and a new entrance door (which will replace a window).

Not included in the price is the kitchen, a bathroom sink and built-in tub (which will be custom-made from reclaimed materials), shelves throughout the flat, electricity sockets, taps, and additional carpentry and furniture.  

Under the contract, the team (hailing from Transylvania) have two months to finish with penalties for late completion.

Less than two weeks after signing the contract, I checked up on the place with my architect, Szabi, who admitted that he was "very impressed" with their progress; they are nearly done with debris removal and removing old floors, and have stripped the walls (including the holding wall that runs down the center of the flat, which will be exposed brick--see below).

If all goes as planned, I should be able to move in in early January once the kitchen and sink is installed and I get some basic appliances and furniture.

Needless to say, it looks like some horrific WWII bunker or post-nuclear holocaust fallout shelter.

(to prove my point about the WWII bunker thing, I've stashed a pic of a WWII bunker below--can you tell which one it is?) 


Kitchen/dining area...

Bathroom area...

Exposed brick wall in the kitchen area (pre-sanded)...

The bedroom (below) with salvaged cast iron tub that will go in the bathroom.  That black stuff on the floor is iron-ore slag--which they apparently used for insulation in some of these older buildings.

Szabi, my architect, on the far right and Gabor (the head of the reconstruction team).

From the living room looking into kitchen/dining area.


  1. The first one? When do we get to come see you?

  2. you win :D I would say that any time after January should be safe. Although check with me first cause I will need a guest bed as well, and I literally have NO furniture at the moment apart from a desk a mattress and some shitty book shelves :)

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  7. Renovations are very important for all buildings weather for bath renovation, living room renovation and kitchen renovation.