Every city has its hipster district, and Király Utca is Budapest’s. Allow us to point out its treasures.
New York has its Greenwich Village, London has its Shoreditch, and Budapest has its Király Utca, or Royal Street. This mile-long road buzzes with creativity and thriving independent stores. Studded with cute galleries, indie labels and quirky coffee shops, and giving centre stage to the city’s burgeoning hipster movement, Király Utca is the place to immerse yourself in Budapest’s delightful take on cool. Here, we point out the best independent enclaves along this trending stretch.
As the global style capitals increasingly emphasise the benefits of slow fashion, Szputnyik Shop has mastered the art. In fact, it has been championing environmental sustainability and responsible fashion long before they were a thing, having opened its doors in 2009. This friendly store on Király Utca gathers together Budapest’s most stylish preloved threads, repurposed treasures and vintage finds under one roof. Szputnyik Shop also stocks brands loved by hipsters the world over.
A common theme on trendy Király Utca is multi-tasking, proudly evidenced by interiors store and coffee shop GoaHome. Specialising in eccentric interior décor and furniture with Oriental, Tuscan and Provencal influences, the boutique is the go-to place for standout pieces for your home. Whether you’re looking for large furnishings such as tables and chairs or smaller items like lights, textiles and Hungarian antiques, there’s an array of stylish items to choose from. Making the experience appropriately domestic, the smell of freshly baked goods and coffee wafts over from the vintage-style GoaMama Coffee café while shoppers pick their purchases.
A concept boutique just off Király Utca, Printa is at once a design shop, a gallery, a printing studio and a coffee house. Whether you’re browsing for quirky souvenirs, need a caffeinated pick-me-up, or wish to order a customised print, this store has it all. Always on-trend, the brand is environmentally conscious, and in the shop section visitors can explore Printa’s collections of eco-friendly clothing, as well as artworks and prints. Visitors with a creative streak can also sign up for silkscreen printing workshops and create artworks of their own. If this all sounds too hipster for you, the smell of freshly brewed coffee should be enough to tempt you inside.
Király Utca has no shortage of galleries, and Inda Galéria is just one of them. This fiercely innovative creative space champions local artists and designers as well as rising talent from across eastern Europe. Every few months, Inda Galéria puts on an exhibition to showcase the freshest names on the Hungarian art scene – and often takes them beyond Budapest into the international art stage. Needless to say, a piece of art purchased here is a sage investment.
Budapest’s most sought-after florist, Arioso, has blooming boutiques across the city. Arioso Flower Café on Király Utca is a fragrant retreat from the world beyond, with coffee, cake and plenty of petals to restore weary shoppers. Tucked in the back is a pretty garden, shaded by leafy palm trees and Japanese maples. A definitive oasis come summer, settle in among the plants for a pick-me-up – with or without alcohol.