Filming Locations Guide: Where was Grand Budapest Hotel filmed?

The cast at the elevator
Posted by Ra Moon
The cities of Görlitz and Dresden in Germany, along with some other spots in Saxony, are the main filming locations where The Grand Budapest Hotel takes place. Also, the film director Wes Anderson, took inspiration from a cocktail between Vienna, Prague and Budapest to create the city of Lutz, in the invented Republic of Zubrowka. The plot occurs in a background with clear references to the history of Central Europe, during the interwar period of the 20th century.

The production team did a magnificent job recreating a fictional universe, that is at the same time familiar to the public. Also the shooting locations are not very difficult to recognize for those who have been there. Many films try to mask or hide the real film locations. In The Grand Budapest Hotel, on many occasions the camera was pointing at the same perspective as postcards do:

The hotel inspiration
Not a single frame has been shoot in Karlovy Vary (Czech Republic), but many elements of the movie are highly influenced by the style and the look of this spa town, like the Grandhotel Pupp. Pictured, the facade of the Bristol Palace Hotel and the poster of the film. Image by Richard Schubert


The interior hall
Görlitz Warenhaus was a forgotten art nouveau building from an old store, build in 1912. It became the perfect set for the interior scenes of the hotel. Image by Wolfgang Pichler


The deer mural restaurant
Also in Görlitz, the Stadthalle was an old concert hall that was used as the hotel’s restaurant. The romantic alpine scene in the background looks suspiciously like the emblematic statue Deer Leap (Jelení skok) of Karlovy Vary. CzechTourism

Image by CzechTourism


The cake shop
Mendl’s confectionery shop was set in Pfunds Molkerei, a historical creamery in Dresden over 100 years old, decorated in neo-Renaissance style. Image by Dresdner Molkerei Gebrüder Pfund



The Dresden shoot
The rococo Zwinger palace, also in Dresden, was chosen for the brilliant scene of the museum of art of Lutz, where Deputy Kovacs try to escape from a stalker. Image by Michael


Scene with secret agent
The pavilions of the Zwinger were rebuilt after WW2 and now hosts a picture gallery and a rather boring porcelain collection. Image by Michael



Car chase
This night scene shows one of the most noted streets in Dresde, with the decorated wall Fürstenzug at the left.
This image and all the screenshots courtesy of Fox Searchlight Pictures.


Fürstenzug wall
The Fürstenzug is a huge porcelain mural representing the rulers of Saxony, that wasn't damaged during the bombing of Dresden in 1945. Image by Harald Selke


The fireman set
We are back to Görlitz, one of the most beautiful German cities not destroyed in WW2. Some more productions like The Book Thief or Inglourious Basterds were also filmed here. Pictured, the facade of the Silesian Museum, featured in a short scene. Image by Schlesisches Museum zu Görlitz


A castle establishing shot
Kriebstein Castle was used as outdoors for the prison Checkpoint 19, and the indoor scenes were located in the castle of Osterstein, in Zwickau. Image by Burg Kriebstein


Mountains observatory
The station of the cable car in the mountains is inspired in the Sphinx observatory, located in Jungfraujoch (Switzerland), at an altitude of 3,571 meters (11,716 ft). Image by Julius Silver


Funicular railway in Budapest
There's something really inspired in Budapest: The mock-up of the funicular that takes to the hotel, is a reproduction of the one of the castle of Budapest. Image by Ken Owen


Drehorte Grand Budapest Hotel
A viewing platform is the set for the wedding scene, in one of the most well-known landscapes of Sächsische Schweiz (or the Saxon Switzerland). Image by Fswerk


Akademie Zubrowka High Mountain Observatory
This handcrafted film is full of small jokes and many curious details, like the name of the country where the action takes place: Zubrowka is a popular brand of Polish vodka!

For further information we totally recommend the awesome book The Grand Budapest Hotel, that will take you behind the scenes to understand the wide variety of sources that inspired the film. Also from the same editorial, The Wes Anderson Collection is an exceptional insight into the world of this extraordinary filmmaker. Finally, also you won't regret to get your hands on The Illustrated Screenplay of the movie. All the three books have got superlative reviews on Amazon!


Behind the scenes book Wes Anderson collection Book cover

5 comments

  1. Thanks for posting this, Ra! I loved the movie, have watched it twice already and could easily watch it again.
    Great photos!

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  2. Hi, I just made a map featuring all the locations :) https://www.google.com/maps/d/edit?mid=zYsstHEJSRJ0.kZNDqpmoHLbk

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  3. Thanks Livia, very interesting... The reviews in Trip Advisor are also very entertaining to read! :D
    http://www.tripadvisor.com/Hotel_Review-g6840479-d6776131-Reviews-The_Grand_Budapest_Hotel-The_Republic_of_Zubrowka.html

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  4. I love this movie. It is full of creative ideas and the cinematography is just brilliant. Character of Zero is outstanding.
    Would definitely love to read the book.

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