Modern Buildings You Have to See

Modern Buildings You Have to See

You can see more than historical sights on your trip!

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In the Czech Republic, there are sights that have survived centuries, and sometimes even millennia. Visitors from all over the world rightly admire them. But there are also buildings that will become sights in decades, or centuries: buildings of modern architecture that receive awards at competitions, but that also serve their purpose. We will show you the best you can see in the Czech Republic.

Dancing House in Prague

Every fan of modern architecture knows the famous building by architects Frank Gehry and Vlado Milunić. The house has been standing on the bank of the Vltava in Prague for more than twenty years, looking towards Prague Castle and Petřín. The house was originally named Fred and Ginger, as the two towers resemble the dancers Ginger Rogers (the glass tower) and Fred Astaire (the stone tower). At the top of the Fred tower, there is a cupola with a structure made from metal pipes, covered with a mesh. The Dancing House was opened in 1996 and it received the prestigious Time award in the category of Design of the Year in the same year. In the building, there is an exhibition gallery, a restaurant and a bar with a terrace from where you can admire a 360-degree view of Prague.

Quadrio in Prague

The multi-purpose complex offering diverse shopping, work and leisure capacities is located in the centre of Prague. Its modern architecture and high quality of services meet the contemporary demands for a work environment and lifestyle. The Quadrio complex of buildings between St. Wenceslas Square and the National Theatre was completed in 2014. Quadrio includes six buildings, five office towers and a separately standing residential house.

The Gulliver Airship in Prague

The wooden airship seems to be landing on the roof of the DOX Centre for Contemporary Art in Prague. The rare structure that is almost invisible from the street is used as a place where contemporary art and literature meet. Literary debates and author’s readings are held there but visitors can also come to the airship with their own books. The structure, resembling a torpedo, a cigar, but mainly the legendary Hindenburg airship, refers to the desire to travel to unknown lands and worlds. Therefore, it is called Gulliver after the fantastic traveller. When you look carefully, you will see that its nose is pointing down: it is not taking off, it is landing.

National Technical Library in Prague

The National Technical Library close to Prague Castle is the largest library of technical literature in the Czech Republic, with more than one million volumes. The unique monumental library building has a distinct but simple floor plan, in the shape of a spherical square. The abstract cladding has two layers – the internal transparent glazing with black frames is covered with a solid, unbroken “curtain” made of a transparent glass channel unit. The resulting ethereal look of the building is underlined by the distorted and fuzzy reflection of the surrounding buildings and sky. You might notice two quotas on the façade: 263 and 21. They look as if someone forgot to remove them from the fragile-looking façade but they were left behind intentionally: 263 is the circumference of the building and 21 is the height. The interior is full of colours that the floor is painted with. The colours show the weight that the floor bears. The building is almost always open and it is definitely worth a visit!


 

Swimming Pool in Litomyšl

A few years ago, a new swimming pool was opened in Litomyšl, a town in East Bohemia, registered on the UNESCO list of world cultural heritage. The pool was designed by top Czech architects, thanks to which it is not only an oasis for the body, but also for the soul and the eyes that can appreciate quality architecture. The experts value the modern minimalist pool for its perfect setting in the landscape as well as the structure of the space and the integration of the structural system with the whole building. The pool received the 2011 Grand Prix Award of the Society of Czech Architects. If you spend a few days in Litomyšl, make sure you visit the pool and the wellness centre!

The Church of Brethren in Litomyšl

Let’s stay in Litomyšl a bit longer. The city is called the spa of the spirit and the locals have a soft spot for good architecture. That is why they invited leading Czech architect Zdeněk Fránek when they were building the new church, simply called the New Church. Fránek designed a simple but functional concrete building that is also used as a community centre. The building is interesting because it is partially sunk in the ground which makes it look as if it is rising to the skies.

Library of the Faculty of Philosophy at Masaryk University in Brno

Modern structures can also be found in the Moravian capital: Brno. For example, the new building of the library that serves the needs of the Faculty of Philosophy at the Masaryk University in Brno is valued highly by architects. In 2002, it received the Grand Prix Award of the Society of Czech Architects. The building is located inside the faculty premises and it is made of concrete, oak wood, glass and metal. The vertical oak lamellas on the cladding of the building create an imaginary screen between the study rooms and the outside world. The dominant feature of the interior is the double-flight stairs in a circular shape that run through all the floors in the building.

Archeopark Pavlov

The unusual museum in South Moravia, near Mikulov, is built four or five metres under the ground in a place that once revealed the most valuable Palaeolithic findings in the world, including the famous Venus of Věstonice. Archeopark Pavlov was created in cooperation of the Archaeological Institute of the Czech Academy of Sciences and architects Radek Květ and Pavel Pijáček. The result is an exposition that draws visitors into the life of the first modern Europeans with spectacular architectonical and multimedia features. The building was awarded in the Czech competitions Museum Initiative of the Year and 2016 Building of the Year.


 
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