After a hot chocolate at nearby Leonidas, you'll be ready to discover why Bucharest has been called 'Little Paris'. From University Square you can stroll down Victoriei Boulevard towards the river, taking in grand city icons like the Military Club and the Savings Bank. Seek out the Romanian Crown Jewels at the National History Museum, then explore the Old Town's antique shops. You can enjoy a coffee at the Van Gogh Café before crossing the river to visit the huge Palace of the Parliament.
The Universitate metro stop is between the Old Town and the hotel, and from there you can head over to Aviatorilor to explore Herastrau Park. You could clear your head with a peaceful stroll beside the lake, take to the water in a boat, or stop for refreshments in one of the lakeside cafés. No trip to the park is complete without seeing the traditional Romanian houses at the open-air Village Museum, while the Triumphal Arch, just outside the park, is another piece of Bucharest's 'Little Paris'.
For an enchanting evening, stir your senses with a classical concert at the imposing, colonnaded Romanian Athenaeum, just a short walk away from the hotel. For a more earthy experience, visit the Locanta Jaristea restaurant, where you can enjoy the belle-époque atmosphere and taste hearty regional dishes from Turkish pilav to Russian caviar, all to the accompaniment of taraf music and traditional dancing. Afterwards, stroll back to the hotel through the Old Town for a well-deserved nightcap.
Between the world wars, Bucharest was known as 'Little Paris'. The city was built by French architects coming from the school of Baron Haussmann, the father of modern Paris.
The first 5-star hotel in town
The InterContinental Bucharest is the first 5-star hotel to be built in Bucharest. Since its 1971 opening, the InterContinental has been the highest hotel in town and, until 2004, the highest building in Bucharest. The 22 floors offer a luxurious meeting area, 257 rooms and suites, restaurants and a spectacular Health Club, on the top floor. A landmark of Bucharest for almost 4 decades, this building was designed so that every room should have its own balcony and a spectacular view to go with it.
Bucharest City Name origins
The name of Bucharest (Bucuresti) has an uncertain origin: tradition connects the founding of Bucharest with the name of Bucur who was either a prince, an outlaw, a fisherman, a shepherd, or a hunter, according to different legends. In Romanian, the word stem bucur means 'glad', 'joy' and in Albanian, a language which may have historical connections with the Thracian languages, 'bukur' signifies 'beautiful' and 'esht' signifies 'is', literally translated as 'it is beautiful'.
The inventor of the airplane turbo jet engine
Henri Coanda, a Romanian engineer, was the inventor of the airplane turbo jet engine. Also, don't forget Brancusi, one of the world's greatest sculptors and Nadia Comaneci, the first gymnast to ever receive a perfect 10 for her performance at the Olympics in Montreal, in 1976.