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19 wondrous opera houses

By: Angela Nelson on Aug. 18, 2016, 6:42 a.m.
Hungarian State Opera House in Budapest

Photo: Jason DeRose/flickr

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Hungarian State Opera House

Opened in 1884, this neo-Renaissance opera house in Budapest was one of famed Hungarian architect Miklós Ybl’s masterpieces. The main auditorium is traditionally horseshoe-shaped and seats 1,261 people. Two marble sphinxes stand guard at the entrance, and inside the auditorium, helmeted sphinxes can be seen beneath a frescoed ceiling. In front of the building you'll find limestone statues of Ferenc Erkel, who composed the Hungarian national anthem, and Franz Liszt, a well-known Hungarian composer.

The national landmark was, like so many others on this list, damaged during World War II and later restored. Today, a 6,700-pound bronze chandelier hangs from the ceiling, which was painted by Károly Lotz depicting the Greek gods on Olympus.