Following the fall of the Berlin Wall, much residential property in and around Prague’s historic centre was swiftly converted into hotels. That means there’s no shortage of decent accommodation all over the city, from luxury boutique spots near the major attractions to more budget boltholes slightly further out. The abundance of choice can make choosing your ideal hideaway a little difficult. But whether you go for glam suites with jaw-dropping views, converted former farmhouses replete with period features, or sleek design spots with easy access to the Czech capital’s finest restaurants and things to do, our pick of the best hotels in Prague should help. See you at breakfast!
Best hotels in Prague
Even with the aid of Google Maps, finding U Zlaté Studně (or ‘At the Golden Well’) can prove a struggle. However in this case, the phrase ‘hidden gem’ is well deserved. This 16th-century building at the foot of Prague Castle boasts classic, tasteful décor rather than rococo kitsch, and a private entrance to the Royal Garden. Its restaurant is one of the swankiest in town thanks in part to its extraordinary terrace. Book at least a week ahead to secure an Instagram-worthy table al fresco.
With rooms nicknamed Fred and Ginger after the Hollywood icons, Dancing House is one of Prague’s most iconic landmarks. The 31-room hotel occupies three floors. Given its five-star status, the lack of gym or spa is regrettable, but the Ginger Royal Suite is a stunner with an impressive 180-degree view of Prague’s most snapped fairytale vista. Rates vary wildly: while Ginger begins at an eye-watering €2,000, standard rooms start at just €100 a night.
Staying at Emblem isn’t about hanging out in your room: unless you have the cash for one of the generously proportioned suites, chances are it’s rather on the snug side anyway. Head instead to the fiercely bubbling rooftop jacuzzi, part of the swanky M Spa which boasts magnificent views of Petřín Hill. Creative folks can take advantage of the hotel’s artist-in-residence scheme, creating (and displaying) artworks for complimentary stays. Art buffs can also sign up for cultural walking tours of Prague led by students.
The wooden sign outside this renovated farm building announces that U Raka is ‘romantika’. Which it very much is. Ensconced at the end of a of cobbled lane in the picturesque Nový Svět district near Prague Castle, yet still inhabited by locals, this six-bedroom guest house really does feel like it’s been airlifted whole from an 18th-century Bohemian village. An abundance of original features means the whole venue oozes period charm.
Of course, Hilton is a ubiquitous brand, but its Old Town branch, just around the corner from Namesti Republiky, largely manages to avoid feeling generic. The Art Deco décor in the lobby, bar and restaurant harks back to Prague’s interwar golden era of decadent hotels (see fantastic Bohumil Hrabal novel ‘I Served the King of England’), and the breakfast buffet is heaving with goodies to sate your hunger before a day of sightseeing.
Housed in one of Malá Strana’s former monasteries, Mandarin Oriental’s Prague hotel is replete with historic details: note, for example, the vaulted ceilings in the Spices restaurant chock-full of cosy nooks and crannies. Take a yoga class in the newly refurbished spa, once a chapel; admire the gothic foundations through the glass floor as you perfect your downward dog. The outstanding service will make you feel like a VIP even if you don’t opt for the presidential suite with its sizeable private terrace.
A relatively recent arrival on the Prague Hotel scene, the 57-room BoHo is a discreet bolthole tucked down a side street opposite the Czech National Bank. As a design hotel, understatement is the order of the day with a colour palette comprised mostly of muted greys; this contributes to the chilled vibe in a venue that boasts a library as well as an impressively-stocked bar.
If you’re only here for the beer, that’s frankly a shame, as the Czechs are also a nation of great wine producers. High up on a hill above Château Troja, Salabka is best known for its gourmet restaurant which features wine from its own vineyard. It also boasts six apartments with exposed beams and stylish décor. Avoid the hordes at this chic, off-the-tourist-track venue.
Žižkov’s TV Tower, once nicknamed the Prague Prick by locals, doesn’t scream opulence. However, the entire top floor of this ugly but distinctive landmark has recently been transformed into an exclusive upscale hotel suite – exclusive because as the name suggests, there’s only one available. Admire the skyline from a unique vantage point in this luxury perch 70 metres above ground; come back down for a beer at one of the neighbourhood’s gritty pubs.
During the dark days of Communism, Hotel Jalta was the place for foreign visitors to lay their heads – and as such the ideal site to install a Czech secret police listening post in the basement. This is now part of a fascinating museum that guests can access for free. Luckily, despite its past and unlike other hotels on Wenceslas Square, Hotel Jalta is not stuck in a socialist time warp: the food at restaurant Como, for example, more than lives up to the discerning 21st century traveller’s expectations.