Smichov – vivid Prague Quarter

Let’s talk about Prague quarter called Smíchov. It’s seated on the left bank of Vltava river, former suburb, independent city in 1903 – 1921, part of Prague from 1922. From the end of 20 century commercial and office center, residential area, living place of today’s Prague.

Park at Art Nouveau style at Square of 14th October

Let’s have a short look at Smíchov’s history, but in this post I will focus on Smíchov in 20th century in pictures.

Friday farmers market, face of today’s Smíchov

Pears and apples at Farmers Market

Cheese collection at Farmers Market

Due to Smíchov’s proximity to Lesser Town there were monasteries and their premises, vinyards, hop gardens, but also big cemetary for Lesser Town citizens. Further from the river on the hill there used to be summer boweries and gardens of Prague elite.

Small Portheimka manor

Neorenaissance basilica of St. Vaclav from 1885

The name Smíchov gives you two different hints about its origin. First: Czech word “smích” means “laugh”, other Czech word “smíchat” means “to mix”. In our case name Smíchov was first used during 14th century, when big properties were parcelled to smaller, and inhabitants from miscellaneous places were mixed to live here together.

Art Nouveau details

In 17th century rich burglars and nobels were building their summer residences, gardens and vinyards, but in 18th century Smíchov changed to be a workshop place with manufactures, factories.

Former factory, shop today

Shopping and entertaining center New Smichov

Old synagogue on the left side, new offices on right

Due to the high number of smokestacks the quarter was called Manchester. Industrial factories, brewery, that’s to be found at Smíchov in 19th-20th century, with some exceptions, like the Art Nouveau square of 14th October, with important buildings of Culture House and Market Hall, both in art nouveau style, surrounded by appartment buildings in the same style.

Covered Market Hall

Different portals in Art Nouveau

At the end of 20th century city changed together with construction of the Prague subway, former industrial buildings changed to new shopping galleries, entertainment centres and offices.

1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. giulia
    Nov 05, 2012 @ 23:09:43

    I lived year, some years ago. I love this quarter!


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