NH Collection Prague Carlo IV unveils a revamped dining experience

Embark on a journey through history at the hotel’s new 1890 Restaurant & Bar, housed in a former bank vault.

Morgan Childs

Written by Morgan Childs Published on 20.12.2023 15:00:00 (updated on 20.12.2023) Reading time: 3 minutes

There’s a “well-kept secret” theme that runs throughout the story of the NH Collection Prague Carlo IV. It begins with the hotel’s long and surprising history, first as a bank, then as the city’s most notorious post office. And it continues today, as the property enters its next era in a post-Covid world, newly renovated and restored. 

“We have more local clients from the Czech Republic than ever,” Lenka Jurášková, a spokesperson for the hotel, said. “People seem to have discovered the beauty right at their doorstep.”

After a couple of years of touch-and-go travel plans, Praguers are more likely to book a “staycation” than ever before. And for guests who check into the five-star NH Collection Prague Carlo IV the hotel offers an opulent retreat—albeit in the middle of downtown Prague, just steps from the Main Train Station on Senovážné Square.

But for many more locals, it’s the hotel restaurant that’s the main attraction. Since its opening earlier this year, the 1890 Restaurant & Bar has catered to Prague residents in the mood for a bit of local luxury.

Radek Benetka, executive chef at the 1890, describes the restaurant’s offerings as “innovative dishes with a touch of Czech tradition.” Benetka sources his ingredients locally and draws inspiration from across Europe, bringing to bear his experience working in kitchens from ​​Edinburgh to Vienna to Queensland. 

A gala evening on New Year’s Eve at the 1890 Restaurant & Bar promises live cooking demonstrations, a swing band, and a midnight DJ and dancers. See reservation details here.

The a la carte menu gets a refresh with every season and in addition, the restaurant serves seasonal specialties, such as the mushrooms menu, and the asparagus menu. Guests who visit the 1890 Restaurant & Bar this winter can sample the likes of foie gras with smoked apple jelly, Jerusalem artichoke soup, striploin with Bordelaise sauce, and wild boar with pumpkin dumplings.

According to General Manager Martin Židek, the real pièce de résistance is the setting, just behind the hotel’s dazzling neo-renaissance lobby. “Our restaurant and bar embody an extraordinary setting that seamlessly blends elegance with comfort,” Židek said, noting that its open-plan design can be modulated with curtains to create a more intimate atmosphere. “It's not just a dining experience; it's a journey through a thoughtfully crafted space that elevates the overall enjoyment for our guests.”

The NH Collection Prague Carlo IV and its spa and wellness center occupy a neo-renaissance palace, designed by Viennese architect Achille Wolf and built in 1890 for the First Czech Land Mortgage Bank. After nationalization in 1948, the building became the headquarters of the Prague postal service.

According to Jurášková, letters and packages deemed suspicious by communist authorities were intercepted and kept at the headquarters building, which became known as “the black cabinet.”

Today, there’s no longer anything grim or austere about the hotel. Having undergone a full renovation last year, its architectural team was careful to preserve the hotel’s historic character whilst giving the building a 21st-century update. 

There’s no papering over the history here. Visitors can nurse a snifter of brandy in The Vault, a handsome bar located in the original First Czech Land Mortgage Bank vault. The space, which features a photographic exhibition celebrating the building’s history, can be rented for private events such as wine or spirit tasting, intimate birthday celebrations, or think-tank meetings.

During the holiday season, the 1890 Restaurant & Bar is opening its arms to residents seeking a spectacular night out. The hotel will host a lavish six-course dinner with wine pairings and live music on Christmas Eve. A gala evening on New Year’s Eve promises live cooking demonstrations, a swing band, and a midnight DJ and dancers.

According to Chef Benetka, it’s all part of an effort to create a stronger sense of community within the city of Prague. “Our commitment to the local community goes beyond providing exceptional hospitality—it's about fostering a sense of belonging,” Benetka said. “We believe in becoming a cherished part of the neighborhood, and that's why catering to our local clientele is paramount.”

This article was written in association with the NH Collection Prague Carlo IV. Read more about our partner content policies here.

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