A Farewell to Attila Kovács

Attila Kovács, founder and managing partner of DVM group and Horizon Development passed away on 10 February 2021 at the age of 51. The professional legacy and the uniquely sophisticated work philosophy of this visionary architect, passionate businessman and charismatic leader lives on not only in the buildings he left behind, but also in the hearts of his colleagues and business partners who had the privilege of working with him.

Attila Kovács graduated from the Faculty of Architecture at the Budapest University of Technology in 1994 and gained professional experience on a global scale in architecture and project management in the United States, Sweden, Italy, and the United Kingdom. Professionally up-to-date and progressive knowledge was always important for him, hence he consciously strived to have his vision inspired by objects of beauty from all over the world, where he also found inspiration for his own projects.

He founded DVM group – the internationally recognized company offering the most comprehensive range of integrated architecture and building services in Hungary – in 1995, and launched his multiple award winning, premium property development company, Horizon Development, in 2006. He was attracted by the duality of beauty and challenge inherent in monument protection when he undertook the heritage restoration task of Eiffel Palace (the former publication house and printshop of Pesti Hírlap) and the Váci 1 building (the former Stock Exchange Palace). The architectural solutions of Szervita Square Building, Promenade Gardens and Eiffel Square showcase his passionate commitment to contemporary architecture and sustainability.

His entire life was about creating. He built corporations, professional communities and friendships, personal and business relations. Perfection was his calling in everything he engaged in. Beyond the world of real estate and architecture he was a devoted owner of St. Andrea Vineyards and Winery, the St. Andrea Restaurant on the ground floor of Eiffel Palace, and the St. Andrea Wine & Skybar opened on the top floor of the Váci 1 building only some years ago. Belonging to communities was essential to him. He was an enthusiastic member of the MAFC Martos Basketball Team and the Reformed Church of the 11th district.

His beautiful legacy is the heritage and contemporary buildings he left behind for us. As he said in an interview conducted with him last June: “Creation, creativity and development are my elements that I thrive on. They give my life renewed energy and meaning.” He never wanted to conform. He was always inspired by innovation, unconventional and novel solutions, the elegant interpretation of today’s global challenges into stone and concrete, and the unique aspects of realization. When talking to Architecture Forum in 2015 after the completion of Eiffel Palace, he mentioned: “I do not mind at all that the world goes a certain way, and I take a different direction.”

Besides representing his companies and projects, his mission on a larger scale was the urban development of the city of Budapest. In appreciation of his progressive role in supporting the enhancement of Hungary’s architectural culture and improving the quality of real estate development he received the ‘Real Estate Professional of Year’ award in 2011 and 2018; the ‘CIJ Leadership’ award in 2016; and the ‘Pro Urbe’ award of the 5th District Municipality of Budapest in 2018. He served as Vice President of IFK (the Hungarian Property Developers’ Roundtable Association) where he represented all real estate developers active in Hungary and ensured their professional presence abroad.

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