The House of Music Hungary, realised within the Liget Budapest Project, won the jury’s main prize on 17 March 2022 in Cannes at the world’s leading and most highly esteemed property industry exhibition, MIPIM, announced László Baán, the ministerial commissioner for the Liget Budapest Project. It is a historic moment that the body of international experts ranked the House of Music Hungary as being superior to the world’s best buildings and unanimously awarded it the jury’s main prize. The jury statement deemed the unique building designed by Japanese star architect Sou Fujimoto as the number one in the world based on its sustainability, aesthetic quality and the visitor experience it provides. The main prize at the MIPIM Awards marks one of the greatest international achievements in the Hungarian property development sector and has elevated the House of Music to being among the most accoladed buildings of Hungary. The House of Music had previously been recognised among the best at the high-ranking International Property Awards in London and the American Music Cities Awards, while CNN, World Architecture and the leading international event guide, Time Out magazine, named it one of the world’s ten most anticipated buildings.
“The significance of the recognition received by the House of Music Hungary is shown by the fact that the jury of international experts does not award the main prize every year but only if it deems a building clearly superior to the others by extraordinarily meeting its special and strict criteria. The House of Music Hungary was the recipient of such a rare recognition, which is an unprecedented milestone in the history of Hungarian property development. From among hundreds of competitors representing the world’s most outstanding developments, this year the jury decided to award the main prize to the House of Music by virtue of the project’s sustainability, its aesthetic quality as well as easily accessibility and special visitor experience,” emphasised Benedek Gyorgyevics, CEO of Városliget Zrt, the company responsible for the implementation of the Liget Budapest Project. The popularity of the Cannes property industry exhibition is hallmarked by the annual 3,800 participants coming here from some 100 countries.
The MIPIM in Cannes is a meeting place for the property sector’s most influential players: developers, experts and financiers as well as economic and political decision-makers. Its awards honour the world’s most excellent and most progressive property development projects every year based on the decision of a professional jury and the votes cast by the thousands of property organisations that attend the exhibition. Recognising the most innovative projects, the MIPIM Awards represent the same prestige as the Oscar in the world of cinema.
The Liget Budapest Project is now Europe’s largest-scale cultural urban development project, said László Baán, the ministerial commissioner of the project, adding that the international success of the realised project elements – including the recent recognition of the House of Music Hungary as the world’s best – confirms that after the implementation of the complete Liget Budapest Project Hungary will be home to one of the most attractive and most complex cultural districts in Europe. However, an inadmissible condition for this is the construction of the developments not yet started, primarily that of the New National Gallery.
“The House of Music Hungary remarkably blends together the unique architectural vision of Japanese star architect Sou Fujimoto and the concept created by the András Batta-led team. The project was realised with the participation of hundreds of Hungarian experts, and it has deservedly earned the recognition of the international jury of highly-reputed professionals, thus placing the Liget Budapest Project on the world stage once again,” added Benedek Gyorgyevics. “Since the January opening of the institution, it has already become clear to us that the new institution of music is Budapest’s next emblematic building: it is extremely popular with the public, with its exhibition and music events having a full house, while some people simply come here to admire the stunning building. This new, prestigious award proves that the implementation of the complete Liget Budapest Project will make the City Park a unique, internationally reputed centre for family events and culture – a vibrant meeting place of the capital,” he emphasised.
“The recognitions received by the House of Music so far, including the recently won MIPIM award, confirm that we are on the right path in aspiring to make music a central part in the lives of as many families, children and young people as possible. It is our objective that Hungarian musical knowledge and erudition, which made us famous in the world, should be revived and nurtured here, while showing to the widest possible circle what a gift understanding the language of music brings to people’s lives. Our wide range of events helps visitors to explore countless musical experiences, including exhibitions, concerts, music sessions, singing, dancing and inspiring music education workshops,” said András Batta, the director of the institution.
The House of Music Hungary
The House of Music Hungary, a uniquely complex institution of musical initiation accommodating the country’s first comprehensive, interactive exhibition of the history of music, opened in January 2022. Although Hungary is a world power when it comes to music, before now it did not have an exhibition comprehensively showcasing the history of Hungarian music. The iconic design, created by Japanese star architect Sou Fujimoto, was selected by the jury from among 170 or so projects at an international competition and its implementation attracted significant attention in professional circles worldwide from the moment of being announced as the winner. The final result did not disappoint since a truly contemporary building has come into being with its organically undulating, punctured canopy and extensive, horizontally undivided glass walls lending it an inimitable appearance. The innovative exterior hides a complex institution of musical initiation, which, thanks to its diverse events, provides visitors with countless musical experiences throughout the year. The House of Music was built on the former site of an unused and dilapidated office complex, which had stood here, in the heart of the City Park, until 2016. The area surrounding the new building – some 7 thousand square metres of green space, previously neglected and closed off to the public for decades – has been rehabilitated and returned to the City Park, open for all.
Previous recognitions awarded to the Liget Budapest Project
The Liget Budapest Project, which is currently the biggest cultural development in Europe both in its scale and complexity, has attracted international attention since its conception. The House of Music Hungary won the award for the Best International Public Service Architecture in 2019 at the International Property Awards (IPA), while in 2021 it was recognised as the Best Use of Music in Property Development/Real Estate at the Music Cities Awards. In 2018 the new Museum of Ethnography was also awarded the Best International Public Service Architecture recognition at the International Property Awards; moreover, it won the special prize of the World’s Best Architecture. In 2021 the National Conservation and Storage Centre (OMRRK) was selected as the Best Public Service Architecture Europe at the International Property Awards, thus the Liget Budapest Project is now the most accoladed development project in the history of the IPA, since it is the first cultural urban development with its elements having won three prestigious awards. In 2017 the Liget Budapest was selected as the best urban development megaproject at MIPIM, the world’s leading real estate industry event, in the Best Futura Mega Project category showcasing the most complex developments. In summer 2021, the largest-scale reconstruction in the history of the Museum of Fine Arts, realised within the framework of the Liget Budapest Project, won the Europa Nostra Award, which is the top heritage award recognition in the European Union.
After winning the award at MIPIM, Benedek Gyorgyevics emphasised that “with the recognitions received by the Museum of Ethnography – to open soon – and the House of Music Hungary – already open – the City Park is now home to two institutions ranked among the world’s best by the profession, which all Hungarians can be proud of. The extremely positive international response suggests that the Liget Budapest Project, as the biggest cultural urban development project in Europe, will not only bring major benefits to the City Park but is anticipated to take the international cultural appeal of Budapest and Hungary to a new level.”