THE HISTORY OF THE CROWNE PLAZA PRAGUE HOTEL
Today’s CROWNE PLAZA® PRAGUE HOTEL was built between 1952-1954. It evolved from an original combination of the architecture of Social Realism known as “Sorela” and “Art Deco” completed by Czech artists and craftsmen. The hotel thus acquired elements strongly reminiscent of buildings constructed in the 20s and 30s of the 20th century in the USA.
The hotel was designed in 1950 by the architect Frantisek Jerabek in co-operation with the architect Frantisek Trmae who formed the collective of the Military Project Institute in Prague. The hotel was planned on the basis of a pre-selected town-planning study as a dominant landmark along the lines of the Lomonosov University in Moscow. The building is constructed as a combined skeleton with the footprint in the shape of the letter “T”. In the interior classical material were used, worked with great craftsmanship in the individual details which was a tradition of craftsmen from the First Republic who were still active at that time. Under the guidance of the architects a number of leading artists created a number of noteworthy originals for the hotel, dominant amongst which are tapestries, stained glass, mosaics, chandeliers, wrought iron, hammered copper banisters and various pieces of stonework. Also exceptional are the paintings opposite the grand staircase, which were created by means of an old Italian technique known as “stucco lustro”. Among the most important artists who participated in the construction of the hotel were Cyril Bouda and Max Svabinsky.
The furniture, a considerable part of which, after renovation,
is still used by our guests today, was manufactured in the style of cubist-like reminiscence, in the spirit of the already mentioned art-deco and also partly after the pattern of the presidential library in Prague Castle.
After 40 years of operation the hotel furnishings were worn to such an extent that it was essential to carry out a general reconstruction. This was entrusted to the architect Michal Sourek. In the part of the originally military building no expense was spared on high quality material and therefore it was possible to keep all the marble tiling and many other architectural elements. It was also possible to lighten the former dark rooms and sensitively extend the entrance hall, where a new place was found for the reception. Through opening it up towards the exterior, the Café and the Lobby Bar acquired a unique atmosphere, with the extra light emphasizing details of the artwork evocative of the 50s.
At the present time the hotel is considered, from the point of view of art history, to be a unique historical building, which was included in the Central List of Historical Buildings of the Czech Republic in the year 2000 and is since called a National Monument.
In the years 2007-2008 the 38 Superior, Executive and Tower Suite rooms reconstructed. The new area of the "Sky Lounge" was opened in the 14th and 15th Floor. Hotel guests can enjoy a quiet and discrete private zone with the lounge for 25 people, breakfast room, winter garden and an amazing 360° view of Prague.