Holešovice: A District with the Stamp of the Industrial
Holešovice is a diverse district stretching along the left bank of the Vltava to Letná Hill and is one of the most exciting areas of Prague today. It was formerly a centre of manufacturing and trade: the city slaughterhouses and market operated here in the early 20th century (the market still exists today), as were steam mills, a brewery, various factories, and a busy cargo port. Nowadays, however, the majority of these industrial buildings no longer serve their original purpose; many have been reconstructed or adapted and have found second lives as apartment buildings, offi ce complexes, studios for young artists, designers, and architects, or cultural institutions.
A visit to Holešovice is mandatory for anyone interested in modern and contemporary art – two major cultural institutions make their home here. The functionalist Trade Fair Palace from 1928, praised by the likes of Le Corbusier, is the home of the National Gallery’s modern and contemporary art collections. Here you’ll fi nd masterpieces by some of the most famous artists of the 20th-century avant-garde, including Picasso, Braque, Gauguin, Van Gogh, and others. The building itself is worth seeing, especially the monumental interior built around a central atrium, with the individual floors resembling the decks of an ocean liner.
The second important “artistic” destination in Holešovice is the DOX Centre for Contemporary Art, which, as its name implies, was created by the reconstruction and rebuilding of a factory near the docks. In addition to a richly varied exhibition programme, its other main attraction is the building’s newest architectural feature – the supremely elegant wooden “airship” named Gulliver, which is the venue for literary events. DOX also has a fantastic museum shop selling books and design, as well as a café.
One of the other newer magnets in the district is the Vnitroblock "creative centre", which can be anything it needs to be thanks to its vast industrial interior. Here you’ll fi nd an excellent café and design shop, music and dance, exhibitions and workshops, fi lm screenings, and the best weekend events in Prague. Anyone who claims they’re interested in alternative culture but hasn’t yet been to Vnitroblock is truly missing out!
Holešovice has many other attractions as well. Along with Karlín, it’s one of the only historical Prague districts that has successfully combined old architecture with entirely new construction. In a similar fashion, local traditions mingle with the dynamism of young creative types, many of whom live and work here. In addition to the largest marketplace in Prague, you’ll fi nd a number of great gastronomic spots here, from cafés and pubs to informal bistros to the popular restaurant and club SaSaZu. In short, Holešovice is a lively district where one could never get bored. What more could you ask for?
If you’d like to explore Holešovice in more detail, we recommend the walk in our brochure Five Prague Walks 2 or the brochure Prague:neighbourhoods Holešovice & Letná. Pick up a free copy at our information and visitor centres, download it from the web www.prague.eu or order a copy from our e-shop (eshop.prague.eu).
Art and Design:
Berlínskej model, Ppl. Sochora 9
Non-profit off-space gallery focused on contemporary young artists.
HNST.LY, Šternberkova 12
At HNST.LY, they believe that even everyday objects can be beautiful and functional. You’ll fi nd household items here for bath and kitchen, as well as eco-friendly notebooks and natural cosmetics.
Jatka78, Bubenské emb. 13
A multifunctional space with a theatre space, gallery, training hall, and bar, home of Cirk La Putyka, a professional new circus troupe.
La Fabrika, Komunardů 30
Repurposed factory buildings make up this multifunctional cultural centre where exhibitions, concerts, fi lm screenings, acrobatic performances, and theatre presentations take place. The industrial origins of the space give La Fabrika its unique character and originality.
Lasvit, Komunardů 32
Unique timeless designer lighting, installations, and decorative glass items from a Czech company with a global presence.
Trafo Gallery, Bubenské nábřeží 13
A private exhibition hall in the premises of a former slaughterhouse.
For Lunch or Dinner:
Tràng An, Bubenské emb. 13, Prague Market, Hall 5
A highly-rated restaurant with a selection of the best of Vietnamese cuisine. They also offer a seasonal menu.
La Bottega Tusarova,Tusarova 39
Gourmet bistro and shop with a large selection of fresh Italian products and delicacies.
Home Kitchen Holešovice, Jankovcova 14
A bistro inspired by the uniqueness and charm of home cooking. You won’t fi nd any doors here separating the kitchen from the dining area.
Holešovická Kozlovna, Dělnická 28
Tank beer, classic Czech cuisine (in the modern sense), and, during the warmer months, a large garden with shady trees.
Restaurace SaSaZu, Bubenské emb. 306
One of the best Asian restaurants in Prague, awarded a Bib Gourmand by Michelin, offering fantastic food at reasonable prices.
Coffee and a Little Something:
Café Jedna, Dukelských hrdinů 47 (Fair Trade Palace)
Located within the National Gallery building, this café has its own cultural events programme. Refreshments and gourmet coffee from mamacoffee are served.
Kavárna Liberál, Heřmanova 6
A unique space combining both a café and a pub that holds occasional exhibitions and readings. Calm, quiet, and a relaxed atmosphere reign here.
How To Get There
Metro C - Vltavská or Nádraží Holešovice stations
Tram 1, 6, 12, 14, 17 (night lines 93 and 94)