ORIGINAL BUILDING, 1910 HENRIK SCHMAHL: Built in 1910 on the most expensive plot of downtown Budapest, the Art Nouveau Bankhouse, with its Moorish and Gothic features, was one of the largest ceramic-clad buildings in Europe at that time. The interior passage, featuring a crystal glass ceiling and rich décor, was an eye-catching gem. No matter how much the former glory of the war-devastated, several times converted building faded, it still remained splendid for the residents of Budapest.
RECONSTRUCTION, 2019 ARCHIKON: The new owners of the Párisi Court wanted to convert the building into a representative five-star hotel. The retail function on the ground floor was preserved, but on the upper floors, the apartments and offices were replaced by hotel rooms. The historical spaces and the street facades had to be restored with the reconstruction of the missing parts. The passage turned into a heated interior space with filigree glass walls at both ends. On the street side, behind the terrace a new contemporary residence unit was built.
ARCHITECTURAL CONCEPT, BEHIND THE SCENES: The Párisi Court dates back to an era when the ornate design was made up of custom-made elements prepared in workshops, and mounted on the building frame as a stage set. The décor looks towards the front, but it's just as exciting to look behind the scenes. We wanted to share this experience and make it visible. For example, in the crystal dome cladding, a glass cover was installed over the previously concealed steel frame structure, to provide a contemporary, illuminated insight, into the exterior hidden structure and the elements of the glass dome. Creating an exciting centerpiece for the patio above the passage. The architectural goal was, to create an inspiring and contemporary transcript of such hidden treasures within the framework of a functionally sound building.