Prague is not only St. Vitus Cathedral, Charles Bridge or Powder Tower. Today it’ also the Dancing House that makes Prague itself.
Building Nationale Nederlanden, also known as the Dancing House or Ginger and Fred is quickly becoming noticeable part of Prague’s architecture. Development team had courage to incorporate Frank Gehry’s and Vlado Milunić’s proposal into traditional urban setting. This bold step has aroused attention among both general public and experts in Czech Republic and abroad, resulting in many awards.
Dancing House is considered unmistakable and magnificent structure and became an integral part of Prague.
Originally there was a tenement house on the site, which was destroyed accidentally in 1945 by Americans during aerial bombing of Prague. In 1963 it was decided that this vacant lot will be build up on again, but no construction took place until the 90’s. In the beginning of the 90’s plans to build were renewed by Vlado Milunić and Václav Havel, who lived in neighboring house. These two gentlemen became acquainted in 1986, when Milunić designed Havel’s apartment. They started discussing the empty lot and their original idea counted with building that would house library, theatre and cafe – institution that would nicely fit in with other cultural institutions based on the riverbank (Rudolfinum, National Theater, Mánes). Nevertheless, they were unable to find investor for this ambitious project. Even in the beginning, Milunić counted that the building would lean above the crossroad as a symbol of state Czechoslovakian society was in. Czechoslovakians moved forward from totalitarian stupor – there’s a vision of static tower in the back and dynamic one ahead of it. At first Milunić wanted to work with Jean Nouvel (later the same investor built The Golden Angel by Nouvel’s design), but Milunić was unsuccessful in securing Nouvel for the project. It’s said that Frank Gehry accepted the offer because “he would do anything for the country that gave Jaromír Jágr to America”. According to Milunić the opportunity to uphold building like this was result of post-revolutionary euphoria, support of Václav Havel and former director of National Heritage Institute Věra Millerová and last but not least, rare coincidence. By the end of the 2013 building was bought by PSN.
Open: 10:00 do 22:00 hodin
Jiráskovo náměstí 1981/6
Prague 2, 120 00