The Art Deco Imperial Hotel in Prague was built between 1913 and 1914 by architect Jaroslav Benedikt. The hotel became very popular until German soldiers also took a liking to it during WW2. After the War, however, it regained its popularity amongst nationals and tourists.

As well as Art Deco, The Imperial has Art Nouveau elements inside, which is synonymous with Prague, for example, mosaic work in the entry. Whilst the entrance is rather beautiful, the same cannot be said for the exterior of the building, which is very grey and dare I say it, a bit ugly. It is, however, a listed building, thanks to its age and history. The hotel was recently restored six years ago and remains true to its heritage.

The lobby and hallways are quite decadent, and have decorative touches, such as gold edging on wall corners, and harlequin mirrors. The hotel boasts high ceilings and heavy wooden doors, which look fantastic, but in reality were irritating when other guests let them go, causing a noisy bang.

I slept in the Deluxe Room (cheapest option) which was very relaxing and quite elegant. The bed was grand and comfortable, with giant pillows. I particularly liked the Deco furniture and the art work. There was perhaps a little too much gilt, but overall it worked well with the style.

The bathroom was lovely but had an issue: the bath, whilst huge and comfortable (it had a built-in bath pillow), was very high and climbing in and out of it to use the adjoined shower was quite perilous at times, especially as I slipped once on the way out.

Staff were friendly and polite, although I didn’t require a lot of help, other than to inquire about the bus back to the airport. I didn’t eat in the restaurant, although I wish I had; the food I ate in other establishments was less than satisfactory.

Overall I enjoyed my stay and would return were I to visit Prague in future. For a five-star hotel, however, I would have liked some more complementary items, such as free mineral water, in-room wi-fi (the hotel lists free wi-fi, but there is no free wi-fi access in your room), a larger selection of tea and coffee options, and a re-labelling of their television channels (some of the few English-speaking channels were missing).

Despite this, the hotel is good value for money and in a decent location. It was generally quiet (I stayed during the week) and I slept very well. The room was relaxing and comfortable, as well as stylish, and I would recommend it to anyone looking for a base to explore Prague.

NB Be aware that hotels in Prague require you to pay a tax to the city (about £4) when checking out, on top of your bill.

http://www.hotel-imperial.cz/

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