NO APOLOGIES for continuing with Prague. It’s just such a liveable city, says Doris Hecht, a German who has lived in numerous countries around the world. She’s GM of ANDAZ PRAGUE, she rows at weekends, and she’s constantly in touch with the community.
Take art. The 176-room hotel, a ful-block conversion of a bank, is imbued with it. Walk along to Reception from either of the two entrances and the off-white walls are dotted with unique-shaped blue and white cartouches by Barbara Idesová. The multi-coloured brutalist sculpture in room 406 is by Kathy Dalwood. Read all about the art, and some of the city’s treasures, in a really intelligent hotel booklet, Walk of Myths.
Doris Hecht works with local gallerist Olga Trcková, owner of DSC Gallery, on the Andaz Art Institute programme. There are monthly events – next is a visit to an artist’s studio, 25th September – and there are occasional artist’s dinners, with dishes exactly paired by chef Richard Bielek to a contemporary Czech piece of art, with the artist present.
The photo above was taken yesterday in Atelier, a leased-out concept store right in the hotel’s building. It’s brilliant. Whoever Pavel Stannek is, he has the most exquisite taste when it comes to buying. Lower level has a pretty impressive chandelier of hanging cook pots, each unique. One wall display has over a hundred sword-tuned cooks’ knives, all different. The Smeg toaster range includes covetable gold, or bronze, machines. Upstairs the eye goes to local glass – Lasvit and friends – and table top, Villeroy & Boch in Fleur Cowles style, Versace galore and Dolce & Gabbana. And, guess what, there’s a one-off D&G-decorated Smeg fridge.
This Andaz is something else – and what a suitable venue for the smashingly successful Luxury Bloc 2023, which finished yesterday. (PS, a message to all females planning on popping Luxury Bloc 2024, 2-5 September, event in the must-do diary, practise walking in six-inch Christian Louboutins, although sneakers would suffice, as long as they are D&G or Versace or, in Girlahead’s case, Pucci.)