Posts Tagged ‘Prague’


Best Prague street: mostly Italian and Arab tenants

In Architecture,Prague on November 27, 2011 by Petr Bokuvka Tagged: ,

Parizska (Street) is generally thought to be the most expensive avenue (or street in general) in the Czech Republic.  Its stores include Louis Vouitton, Prada, Swarowski, Hugo Boss etc. According to some sources, it is the 14th most expensive street in the world in terms of the aforementioned indicators. French actress Chantal Poullain, who used to be married to famous Czech actor Bolek Polivka, says that the street does her remind of Paris, especially to the the architecture of the buildings.

It is also interesting to look at the door bell panels and see the names of the tenants. I think it is no surprise that foreign sounding names, especially Italian and Arab, are the most common thing to find. According to this list of apartments currently for sale at Parizska, a two-bedroom apartment costs usually well over $800,000. This one (four bedrooms) costs $1.6 million. Italian and Arab businessmen are common in the Czech Republic, especially in fields of business in which one’s permanent residence address matters a lot. Accoring to the photos from the list of available apartments, these are high-ceiling apartments, a common element of Art Nouveau.

Look at this photo-visit to one of the apartments owned by a Dutch-Czech businessman, who says that he bought it because he likes huge rooms and the short distance from his office, downtown Prague and his parents’ house.


Photo Walk: Vltava and Kampa in Prague

In Prague on May 8, 2011 by Petr Bokuvka Tagged:

Downtown Prague is a perfect place to walk on a beautiful spring or summer day. Naturally, there are three or four places to avoid due to huge crowds of tourists that make you stop or zig-zag frequently. The streets of the Kampa Island (just next to Mala Strana) are much more peaceful, even though tourists and locals find their way to this neighborhood as well. There is a huge park there where people are allowed to step, sunbathe and nap on the grass (which is restricted in most parks and gardens around downtown Prague). However, when it comes to Kampa, one needs to bring a bottle of water with them. In case of sudden thirst on a hot day, it would be a shame to relinquish a comfy park bench and search for a small convenience store…


Prague Castle Guards celebrated their 92nd anniversary

In Czech Tourism,Prague,Travel on December 11, 2010 by Petr Bokuvka Tagged: , ,

Tourists who enter the Prague Castle like to have pictures taken with two statue-like soldiers in light-blue uniforms standing in front of tall wooden booths at each side of the main gate. The Prague Castle Guards symbolically “protect the president” and they are used for ceremonial purposes. Of course, the president’s real bodyguards are from a different branch of the police force.

The Prague Castle Guards celebrated their 92nd anniversary. Founded in December of 1918, less than two months after the independent Czechoslovak Republic was born, they were mostly “mounted police”. As at 2010, the unit has 655 soldiers and civilian employees…

Photo (c) The Prague Castle (


Prague Flash Mob 2010 at the main train station

In Culture,Entertainment,Music,Prague on December 2, 2010 by Petr Bokuvka Tagged: , , ,


Bus To Bohemia: witty observations by an Englishman in Prague

In Culture,Entertainment,Language,Life,Media,Prague,Travel on November 14, 2010 by Petr Bokuvka Tagged: , , , ,

I am a fan of witty books written by foreigners about a country they visit, or about their new (temporary or permanent) homelands. I liked Stephen Clarke’s Merde books and I enjoyed For the Love of Prague by Gene Deitch.

Bus To Bohemia by Posh Parker is another one of these works of art that are, in my opinion, written mainly for the author’s fellow citizens who are less fortunate and have not had the chance to visit a foreign country and dive into its everyday life by attending local bars and communicating with local people, instead of just eating at KFC and shopping like ordinary tourists. Of course, just like most authors of all genres (be it comedy or university textbooks) there are a few very minor cases of jumping to conclusions — but hey, we ALL do it.

Books like this one may also be of interest to Czechs who want to know how the nation is perceived by foreigners and who do not take things personally. Many Czechs do take things personally and any comments and remarks regarding aspects of everyday life result in their unspoken remarks “Go back to (insert country here)”.

Of course, one has to have in mind that books written by the author’s foreign experience are often written from one specific perspective. Had the author arrived as a first-class British Airways passenger and stayed at the Radisson and dined in the Alcron’s La Rotonde, it would be a different — and boring! — perspective. 

The author’s website is here. You can also buy his book.


Prague subway turnstiles: neverending story

In Economy,Prague,Technology,Travel on May 20, 2010 by Petr Bokuvka Tagged: , , , , ,

DP Praha, the City of Prague’s public transportation authority, wants to reinstall turnstiles at subway stations. The most recent discussions have been going on for two years with no real results…

The project is feasible. One of the benefits would be the improvement in terms of fare collection. However, some issues have to be resolved, such as the payment of one-ride fares via SMS cell phone messages, etc.
MF Dnes daily, March 14, 2008

Public transportation enthusiasts reacted almost immediately. They argue that the crowds of people at major transfer points who transfer between buses/trams and the subway will slow down and that people who have pre-paid cards (in which case bar codes or magnetic stripes will have to be scanned) will cause the system to crash.

However DP Praha argued that these issues will be resolved and ticket inspectors will practically disappear from subway stations. They’ve probably never heard of people in the U.S. who like to jump waist-high turnstiles.

One year later, on March 13, 2009, Czech Television reported that the project should cost CZK 2.2 bln and the estimated ROI is five years… According to the report, the turnstiles should be almost full-height types (1.7 m) and that the design should be sufficient to withstand large crowds at major transfer points (40 to 60 people per minute)…

And once again, one year later, the Green Party says that DP Praha should give up the project because the ROI calculations are unrealistic, DP Praha would have to apply for a loan and that the new technology is not friendly to wheelchair-bound citizens and mothers…

Some citizens’ organisations also claim that the system that is planned for subway will not be compatible with ticket markers on buses trams and trains…


Prague Ruzyne Airport – behind the scenes

In Life,Prague,Technology,Travel on May 15, 2010 by Petr Bokuvka Tagged: , , , , , , ,


Hooters to open its first restaurant in Prague on June 4

In Economy,Prague on May 8, 2010 by Petr Bokuvka Tagged: , , ,


After McDonald’s, KFC, Subway, Starbucks etc. there is one more symbol of American dining that will offer its yummy services to Czechs. And I mean yummy. Hooters is coming to the Czech Republic. The grand opening will take place on June 4. The concept will fit the Prague restaurant scene perfectly. American cuisine is very popular among Czech restaurant-goers, many of whom are snobs who think that being seen at a certain establishment (e.g. a Michelin restaurant, or well-known cafés) is a part of their image. Plus, it is a well-known thing that Czech girls are hot, so they should not have a problem finding the best employees.

They are hiring now…

Some people might protest against the way the jobs are advertised, though. Basically, it is illegal to discriminate applicants based on their looks and one might argue that serving drinks is a task for which huge tits are not a must. Let’s just hope that no frustrated applicant will challenge the hiring methods in courts, just “to show ’em”.

The ad includes the request for “appearance consistent with the Hooters overall concept”… Which basically means D cups…

In case you have just opened your diary, here is a map with the future location…


Chasing Barack Obama in Prague

In Politics,Prague,World on April 8, 2010 by Petr Bokuvka Tagged: , , , , ,

Presidents Barack Obama and Dimitry Medvedev signed a new nuclear treaty in Prague today (Thursday). I knew that a large part of the Hradcany borough around the Prague Castle will become almost a ghost town… Well, the restrictions were not as tough as I thought they would be…

12:00 noon

(c) Petr Bokuvka

Large sections of the Hradcany neighborhood around the Prague Castle are still closed. Both presidents and all distinguished guests are now in the castle and the treaty signing ceremony should start any minute. This square is almost empty, save for a couple of tourists. This is the roadblock/checkpoint of the second perimeter and cops stopped the huge crowds of tourists at the third (outermost) level…

12:30 p.m.

(c) Petr Bokuvka

Just across the street from the roadblock the Prague Castle Guards have their headquarters. They practiced they routine several times, leading a couple of journalists to believe that Obama’s motorcade will leave the castle on the way to the hotel … and pass through this checkpoint. After all, this is the way the motorcade arrived in the morning.. There were about 20 American tourists (not one single group, usually couples or groups of three) who waited patiently to see their president…

1:05 p.m.

(c) Petr Bokuvka

It should be any minute now, we were told…But later it was revealed that the Castle Guard motorbike entourage means nothing… In the meantime, the number of tourists on this square increased, as did the number of street cops who told the tourists to be ready to get out of the road…

2:13 p.m.

(c) Petr Bokuvka

Incident! Some odd guy on a mountain bike passed though the roadblock, totally ignoring four cops who were standing there. They started yelling at him and there were another three further down the street, ready to catch him. He stopped and argued for a while… He was very lucky because the cops said they were getting ready for some “protesters”… he sure looked like one…

2:20 p.m.

(c) Petr Bokuvka

Right behind me is the third-level (outermost) roadblock/checkpoint… This is where the large crowds of tourists and other people were stopped… Also, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs is behind me…

3:55 p.m.

(c) Petr Bokuvka

We realised that Obama’s motorcade was going to leave the Prague Castle via its northern gate!! That required a six-minute walk and… we almost missed it… The two gentlemen in yellow vests with numbers are from the so-called “anti-conflict” team. Their job is to deal with troublemakers… usually young people who protest against globalisation and other issues by throwing things, or throwing themselves in front of cars etc… From what we saw they had almost nothing to do here…

4:00 p.m.

(c) Petr Bokuvka

The motorcade is here…led by two police motorbikes…

4:01 p.m.

(c) Petr Bokuvka

Cadillac One… I only heard clapping from the crowd… No booing, no yelling, no whistling…

4:01 p.m.

(c) Petr Bokuvka

Barack Obama on the way to his hotel… That was close…


Obama and Medvedev to sign the START treaty in Prague

In Politics,Prague on March 30, 2010 by Petr Bokuvka Tagged: , , , ,

President Barack Obama and his Russian counterpart Dimitry Medvedev will meet in Prague on April 8 to sign the “new” START treaty that Obama talked about when he visited Prague almost a year ago.

Several other cities were considered, including Helsinki (Finland), Stockholm (Sweden), or Kiev (Ukraine), but all of them were ruled out because Obama is said to have selected Prague from the very beginning.

I will be in Prague on this day and I will try to get as close to the events as possible…

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