Prague’s most eccentric building is the curvaceous Dancing House (in Czech Tancící dum) in the New Town, also known as ‘Fred and Ginger’ after the famous dancing couple Fred Astaire Ginger Rogers.
The Dancing House has a decidedly original shape that clashes with the surrounding 18th-19th century buildings. Looking at the building, it is really hard not to think of a pair of dancers locked in an embrace during a dance step: the stone tower is the dancer, while the glass tower is his dancer.
Inevitably, such an unconventional style has provoked considerable protest and even among visitors to Prague there are those who turn up their noses.
According to detractors, it is an architectural ruin that spoils the romantic image of the city; according to its supporters, however, it is an important symbol of modern Prague. You just have to go and see it and decide what you think!
Built between 1992 and 1996 on a commission from an insurance company, the Dancing House filled a void left by a building destroyed on 14 February 1945 during an air raid on Prague by the Americans.
The project was entrusted to Croatian architect Vlado Milunić in cooperation with the world-renowned architect and designer Frank Gehry, while the interior was partially designed by Eva Jiřičná, an Englishwoman of Czech origin.
The proposal to build a cultural centre inside the Dancing House was abandoned: only a gallery with exhibitions and a bookshop remains.
Today the building houses mostly offices, including those of multinational companies, as well as a café and a luxury restaurant with a terrace offering a beautiful view. Two floors of this iconic building are occupied by a design hotel.
Admission to the Casa Danzante is free of charge, as is the ascent to the cafeteria; however, to visit the gallery of the Dancing House you must purchase an entrance ticket.
The famous Fred and Ginger building is located on the Rašínovo nábřeží waterfront in the New Town. You can easily reach the area by tram.
You can also stay in the Dancing House in the hotel of the same name, Tančící dům Hotel. It occupies two floors of the building and a restaurant with a breathtaking view of the river and Prague Castle.
City Card allow you to save on public transport and / or on the entrances to the main tourist attractions.