In October 2016, Prague’s historic Palác Lucerna saw the temporary opening of its rooftop terrace which hosted a three-day farmer’s market, pop-up café, and some rather unusual guests – a pair of goats.
The initiative (and the barnyard animals) belong to Prague café owner and urban impresario Ondřej Kobza who announced today that the wooden deck on the fifth-floor rooftop space has been completed and will open to the public later this week.
Posting in the Facebook event for the opening (Nebe nad Lucernou), Kobza writes: “In October we invited you for the first time, and since then we have done a giant job: we have completely replaced the insulation and laid down a 1,000m2 beautiful wooden deck of Siberian larch.”
Kobza goes on to poetically describe the Czech capital’s latest look-out platform as a seagoing steamer in a sea of buildings:
“The ideal place for engagement, the establishment of a business or family, the composition of a hit verse, or even a silent mute amazement over the poetry of the urban landscape in the heart of Prague.”
Inspired by the rooftop culture of cities like New York, Kobza predicts that “One day I will be holding chickens and butterflies over Lucerna at the tomato gardens; there will be salons, lectures, and happenings every week…Our dream is to start a roof culture in Prague…to start another floor of life.”
In the meantime, the new deck will open for just one week starting this Thursday, August 17, to August 23. With the exception of the Thursday opening, visitors can access the terrace from 12pm to 8pm.
A suggested donation of 100 CZK goes toward the continued repair of the rooftop, which still needs an estimated 6 million CZK of construction work.
Architect Petr Hájek, whose firm is designing the new DOX gallery building, is behind the Lucerna rooftop reconstruction project.
It is also supported by members of the Havel family; the iconic Art Nouveau Prague building (1920) was designed by the late president Václav Havel’s grandfather.
During the week of open doors, products from the Farm Košík shop, owned by Dagmar Havlova, will be on offer.
Kobza has said that while he pitched his urban rooftop space to other venues (including the National Museum of Agriculture in Prague 7 which opened its rooftop terrace earlier this month), Havlova was an enthusiastic and influential early supporter.
Entrance to the Lucerna rooftop is opposite the Great Hall at the paternoster.