Paris Nagy Aruhaz Building, Andrassy Ut, Budapest

Zsigmond Sziklai
Date Built
1911 - renovated 2007 - 2009
Andrassy Ut
This building, occupied today by the Alexander Bookstore, started life in 1911 as the Paris Department Store.  Designed in the Art Nouveau style, by the Hungarian architect Zsigmond Sziklai, its exterior is impressive enough, but inside there is a surprise.  You enter through the very modern looking bookstore, featuring the original central atrium, but when you travel up the escalator, you see ahead of you an ornate 19th Century ballroom, occupied today by the Bookcafe. 

The ceiling of the "Bookcafe" hall is decorated by murals created by Karoly (Charles) Lotz, whose work can be seen in many buildings in Budapest, including St Stephen's Basilica and the Opera House.