Having discovered and explored the oldest cafes in Italy, our trail of discovery to the historical cafes of Europe continues: this time, our destination is Prague, a magical city full of charm that boasts a thousand legends and a long, spellbinding history. Its particular location in the centre of Europe has influenced its art, its culture and even its food.
Most of the bars and restaurants in the city are in Belle époque style. Prague is one of the capitals you can’t afford not to visit at least once in a lifetime, so why not follow our guide and discover three of its historical cafes, also because we’ve picked those that we know make an excellent Italian espresso!
Discovering 3 historical cafes in Prague
Cafes in Prague: Café Slavia
Café Slavia is located opposite the National Theatre. It first opened in 1884 and has always drawn artists, writers, celebrities from different artistic currents and their admirers from near and far. Its name derives from Slavia, the mother of all the Slavs.
Today, it is still popular with artists and intellectuals, as well as with tourists from all over the world who, by opening its windows, can enjoy a breathtaking view of the picturesque hillside on which the splendid Castle of Prague stands. When visiting Café Slavia, you’ll be welcomed and pampered by staff in tailcoats, ready to offer you a first class service.
In the nineteenth century, the café was one of the symbols of the Czech National Revival. Some of its most famous, illustrious customers from the Czech Republic have included many poets, notably Jiří Kolář and Jaroslav Seifert, Jan Zrzav, an important Symbolist painter, and various actors and playwrights, including Vaclav Havel.
Cafes in Prague: Café U Labuti
The café was established in 1925, but the building that houses it dates back to the Renaissance period, with 19th century Baroque style panels, and is therefore much older.
In 1800 the entire building belonged to a horseman. The Losy Z Losenau family subsequently became the owners of the building and the café, managing both for many decades. We mention the horseman because the vibe of the café today is still reminiscent of that period: the booths are the old horse troughs, the large tables in the main room are the oak tables of the knights of long ago, and some of the armchairs are the original ones, there since the 19th century.
Additionally, the café is only a short stroll from the Castle. We recommend it as the perfect location for those who adore losing themselves in a 19th century knightly atmosphere with a pinch of romanticism, obviously while ordering an excellent espresso coffee.
Cafes in Prague: Café Savoy
This splendid café also opened in the 1800s and precisely in 1893, but back then it was a simple affair. Indeed, it is well-known that it was once a perfectly ordinary Prague café. Instead, today, it is so famous, and it has such an important reputation that it is often recommended by the Slow Food movement as an essential stop during a trip to Prague.
It is an elegant setting, with a décor featuring particularly fine materials. And it is considered one of the city’s most refined bars for its atmosphere, its professional service and, above all, for the high quality of the fine food and wine on the menu. The espresso is excellent here and we would also recommend ordering a nice cappuccino, accompanied by the café’s own home-made biscuits.