Bucharest Dreamy Surroundings

parc1I have been living in Bucharest for about 10 years now, but just this spring I have heard of and visited the Stirbey Palace in Buftea.

It was build by Barbu Stirbey, ruler of Muntenia region between 1853 and 1863 but became famous under his grandson, Prince Barbu Alexandru Stirbey.

Schooled in Paris, the Prince was one of the most important figures of Romanian high society in the early 1900.  He was the administrator of the Crown domains and member of Boarding Council for most important companies of the country: factories, plants, insurance companies and so on. But his personal fortune made from huge inherited domains, forests, factories, vineyards, cotton & rice plantations, a  dairy factory, a mill, cotton bandage factory made him the richest man of Romania at his time.

Even Queen Maria of Romania stayed here during the first world war and other personalities used to visit. Famous writers like Mihail Sadoveanu, Vasile Alecsandri, Ioan Slavici, musicians like George Enescu, other politicians and not only : Lascar Catargiu, Petre Carp, Teodor Rosetti, Mihai Sutu, Titu Maiorescu, gen Ion Argetoianu, Carol Davilla, Gheorghe Gheorghiu Dej, Hrusciov, Jean Marais, Belmondo  stayed at the palace.

Now, the domain is under private adminsitration, an investment fund or something has it and  they organize mostly weddings and private events.

In regular days, when we went, we just ate at the restaurant’s outside terrace. The ambiance is great, quiet, noble, but I am sorry and feel like the palace is kind of in degradation.

The surrounding park next to the lake is gorgeous with his secular trees but still more can be done. I will surely visit again at least to drink a lemonade at the palace. By the way, it was really good:)))

parc palat

masa mare


poduletcasuta    padure


And the crown jewel, the most exceptional building here is the little church


Europa League final in Bucharest

For the 1st time in Romania I think, at least for as long as I can remeber, we are finally hosting a big international football event. Yey!!! because Romanians are football fanatics and it was about time this country was on the European football map.

I am talking about the Europa League final on May 9th. Thank God for this event that we have built a great stadium, National Arena. It is funny that only now we got a true modern stadium, but I am glad that this one lead to other beautiful constructions in Cluj and Ploiesti.

I have visited the stadium last summer on August 6th at the Open gates day&night so here are some picures made then. I must say that people were so enthusiastic about the opening, that there were around 100.000 visitors and they were coming also from province areas in a trip to Bucharest especially for the event.


Sunset in Bucharest

I am not a professional photographer but yet reality is not like photoshop pictures…so here’s how I see the city from my balcony…communists blocks ahead, construction materials prepared to reabilitate some of them and of course some cranes in the distance. The city is continuously changing, and we have more and more modern places to live in…too bad they’re not in the center, but in villages near Bucharest the developpers call “10 min drive from the city center”:)

Meanwhile the beautiful buildings in the city are left to self destruction..well, it is too expensive to reconstruct..

here is a forum with lots of old great decay buildings


Another extremely interesting blog about old Bucharest, history, people, exquisite architecture


But here I am, in a communist neighbourhood where only the blocks are decaying..

When you go out in Bucharest

Well, this is not a good thing, but a good thing to know:) It just keep happening, no matter the day of the week, when I go out in a pub/restaurant/lounge whatever even if all the place is empty, the waiters will say that they are fully booked. Even if they find you a table it is always the one in the corner, the one smaller where you have to squeeze to fit in. And I am wondering why is that?

On a Thursday evening, around 7, I went to an Irish pub and it was evidently empty. We sat at a table for 3 but then 3 more people came and we had to switch. Guess what, they gave us a table for four but with 6 chairs while the rest of the pub, for at least 2 hours was empty!

Same place, with reservation on a Friday evening gave us a table somewhere in the back saying that others are reserving specific tables. Come on, it’s a bar!

Another place, this time a lounge/club whatever, we went there at 8 and of course as a club it was empty, as the people were coming from 11-12. The funny thing was that at 1st we made reservations for 4 as we didn’t know who was coming. Then we switched to a 6 and eventually we should have been 8, but the guy told us he gave the last table and we could just squeeze somehow 6. Of course it was a lie, we went only 6 people and we had a regular 6 table. Again all the other tables were free…

So I am just wondering, is this happening to you too, or it’s just Bucharest and pub owners are crazy?

Picture from here


And I’m starting to find the quintessence of this blog actually with this post….

I just got back from a lunch at probably the most famous traditional Romanian restaurant in Bucharest and I said to myself: I have to show you this Romanian special desert, called “papanasi”. The “i” at the end marks the plural because wherever you will go they are serving 2 of them for a ratio. I couldn’t tell exactly why, as they are quite big and I am always sharing.

But what are the papanasi? Well, they are deep fried donuts with a hole in the center and with a small ball of dough on top. As for the taste, the dough is made from flour,eggs bla bla bla and the special ingredients: fresh cow cheese and meal. The original papanasi are always served with high fat sour cream and sor cherry confiture (jam) toppings.

They don’t seem like a big deal, but you must try it and when you try it make sure you are in the righ place. I usually eat them when in holiday in the mountains or at this restaurant in Bucharest, Caru cu Bere. Oh, and don’t worry abut the price, one portion which you will eat with your partner for sure costs 3 euros.

 So if you will ever be in town, it’s imposible not to get a recommendation to dine at Caru cu Bere. I’ve seen it in all the tourist guides, and honestly it’s worh it if you want to see and eat Romanian traditions:) Located in the historical center of Bucharest, opened since 1879, great atmosphere, live folclor music and dances, it is always crowded: families, young people, old people, a lot of foreign tourists, everybody’s here.

Here’s some pictures from inside the restaurant


and here a recipe (in Romanian)