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gellert spa questions

Nevada
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gellert spa questions

Anyone been to the gellert spa in 2011 and care to comment on price, conditions of spa and special treatments. Anyone been to both the gellert spa and the Szechenyi and care to comment on which is better to go to for an American tourist who will visit the "spa" for the first time.

Any other information on dress and proper spa behavior would be appreciated.

Las Vegas, Nevada
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1. Re: gellert spa questions

I haven't been to the Gellert yet my fellow Nevadan -- I plan to this fall -- but I would point out that the Szechenyi is fundamentally different from all of the other spas. The real choice is between Szechenyi and a more traditional type spa on the Buda side.

The Szechenyi is on the Pest side. Swimsuits are used throughout all pools on the property. The building is incredibly beautiful and it's worth the visit just for that (and because all patrons are clothed in swimwear, you can take pictures throughout). It's far and away the most popular with the locals, but that, in part, might have to do with the fact that it's the only spa on the more-populated Pest side of the Danube.

The Gellert is more traditional. It's gender-segregated in parts. If you want the more traditional experience, your choice is between the tourist-heavy Gellert and the smaller Rudas, which is nearby. The Rudas is very much a Turkish bath and I would recommend it over the Szechenyi unless you're going as part of a couple, in which case the flexibility of the Szechenyi would be best.

Better yet: since it is such a different experience, do Szechenyi one afternoon and either the Gellert or Rudas the next. It's totally different experiences, so you won't be repeating.

Nevada
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2. Re: gellert spa questions

Thank you fellow Nevadian for your comments on the difference in the spa's.

Are all the waters thermal or are there additional cooler water pools.

Any additional comments on spa price, proper spa behavior, what to bring understand we should bring our own towel? I have read that the Szechenyi can be more difficult to use due to language and my Hungarian is zilch except for paprikish.

Can you explain the difference between a locker and cabin as I understand if there are two people using the spa and wish to have a cabin one needs to purchase a pool ticket and one needs to purchase a cabin ticket? Are the cabins and lockers safe? Do you recommend any of the massage treatments.

Really appreciate your advice as it is sounding like the Szechenyi spa is better for our purpose. Thanks again any input is appreciated.

Las Vegas, Nevada
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3. Re: gellert spa questions

Hungarian is probably the most impenetrable language in Europe (save for Basque). All of us tourists go to the baths clueless in the local tongue! I found it to be no problem at either the Szechenyi and the Rudas. There are enough English language speakers to guide you through the process. It's not as inscrutable as the guidebooks let on.

The Szechenyi complex is very large. Take your own towel and your own swimsuit and, if you like to keep your feet fungus-free, take flipflops. Like all of the thermal spas, the Szechenyi has pools of varying temperatures, ranging from Arctic freezing to human-soup hot. The Szechenyi simply has more pools of more varying temperatures than any other, including indoor and outdoor. (The signature photo of the thermal spas that you see on the net and in the guidebooks is the people playing chess soaking in the outdoor pool at the Szechenyi.)

I'll let someone more familiar discuss the specifics of the entry process, but I remember getting there late in the day, not speaking a word of Hungarian, and getting through the process quickly and painlessly. (I had a little confusion with the changing room situation at both the Szechenyi and the Rudas, which was easily resolved, but none at the entry station.)

One thing I wish I would've known: if you want a massage, you should pay for it at the entry gate.

Phoenix, Arizona
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4. Re: gellert spa questions

Not to be a contrarian, but I have been led to believe the famous photo of the two old guys with the bathing caps playing chess with the steam coming off the water is from Heviz

Nevada
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5. Re: gellert spa questions

Thanks for all your help retrofuturistic concerning the spa's in Budapest. You have given us much helpful information and made us more confident in choice of spa's. which will be Szechenyi.

You have indicated that you are planning a return to Budapest will you be there the first week of Sept?

Thanks again

Las Vegas, Nevada
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6. Re: gellert spa questions

@Donbacsi: There are chess boards in the waters of the main outdoor pool pf the Szechenyi. I'll defer to you that THE iconic photo of the Hungarian thermal spa scene is Heviz -- I've not yet been to Heviz or the Hungarian thermal hinterlands -- but one of the iconic photos of Budapest is chess-playing at the Szechenyi.

@oligarchy: My next trip will be in early October.

Nevada
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7. Re: gellert spa questions

To retrofuristic:

We are back from our trips to various countries end of September.... would have been fun to have met "an old Budapest hand" in Budapest.

Have a fantastic time on your travels and maybe our paths with cross on another travel adventure. Thanks again for your timely and helpful responses.

Oligarchy

8. Re: gellert spa questions

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