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Prague -- A Journeywoman's Point of View

A restaurant foodies will appreciate...

I was in Prague in September this year and stumbled upon a great restaurant in the neighborhood of the apartment were I was staying. It is called the Black Rooster (Cerny Kohout) Address: Vojtesska 9, Prague 1 and it was recently written up in the New York Times. The restaurant is smallish, quite unpretentious with family owners and it specializes in modern Czech, French and international cuisine. They offer a degustation menu and the wine list is fabulous. I had a particularly memorable meal there and I am a very picky, hard to please “Aussie foodie”. As a woman dining solo I also really appreciated the very thoughtful, friendly and considerate manner in which I was treated by the waiters. It’s a little above average prices but worth every bit.
Kathy, Melbourne, Australia

EDITOR'S NOTE: Click here for another six well-recommended Prague Restaurants.

 

Bridges, barrettes and communal dining...

I walked across the Charles Bridge on a sunny Sunday afternoon and things seemed to be in full swing with musicians, vendors, and of course those amazing statues. I picked up some handpainted barrettes and earrings for my daughters back home ... very inexpensive and very nice.

Solo travellers take note of this fun, noisy tourist spot . U Flecku (Kremecova 11) is a very old Czech brewery that also serves traditional Czech food. It is Prague’s most famous beer-hall and brewery. Seating is at long tables so you will have tablemates with whom to strike up a conservation. Musicians in traditional outfits roam around the tables and play songs from your homeland. The atmosphere is quite busy and convivial. P.S. If you are offerred 'shnapps' turn it down. This liquor is not free.
Hollie, Lexington, USA

 

Hotels, hot chocolate and Cesky Krumlov...

Hello! Just came back from the Czech Republic. Prague is a beautiful city. I highly recommend the Hotel Loreta. It was recommended by the New York Times and it was well worth it. It is located in the castle area which is quiet and not too touristy. Also, I highly recommend the thick hot chocolate at the Golden Scissors hotel, I went back at least four times for it. It is fun to meander around the posh Mandarin Oriental as well. It's considered the most luxurious hotel in Prague.

Cesky Krumlov is beautiful and fairytale-like city. It takes three hours by bus or more than five hours by train. I stayed at, and recommend the Pension Kriz. They serve a great breakfast! Have fun in The Czech Republic.
Lauren, West Palm Beach, USA

 

Meet the expats...

There is a huge expat community of Americans, Brits, Canadians in Prague. A fun place to meet them is JJ Murphy's, a great Irish pub, in Mala Strana (Lesser Town) on Trizste street, near St. Nicholas Church. There are always English speakers there plus good food and beer as well. This would probably be a good place for solo women travellers to meet the locals. Who knows? You might meet a sightseeing buddy who is interested in the same walking tours as you are.
Yvonne, Paris, France.

 

Garnets, tipping and counting your change...

I have friends living in Prague. These are a few of their tips for your website. Bohemian Garnets are beautiful. Unlike their South African counterparts, Czech garnets are small and deep dark red. There are shops everywhere in Prague that sell them, but they are best purchased at a Granat dealer in Prague or Cesky Krumlov. Granat (Dlouha 28, Prague 1) is one of the two official distributors in the Czech Republic. They are open from 10-6 and on Saturday from 10-1.

Tipping is uncommon among Czechs but somewhat common among the expat crowd. If you get decent service, we recommend tipping between 8-10%. When you pay your check, the most common way to express the tip is to tell them the total amount of money you want to pay (e.g. in a nice place on a bill 820 Kc you would say “900,” in a pub, bill 146kc, you would say “150”), rather than leaving the tip on the table. When paying by credit card in a restaurant, the waitperson will appreciate a tip in cash for the same reasons as anywhere else.

Count your change, ladies. The Czech reputation for customer service is not high -- particularly in the centre of Prague where shop assistants, waiters and waitresses can sometimes be downright surly. Unfortunately, their focus on customer service (or lack thereof) sometimes leads them to short change you when you’re paying a bill. Count your change when you get it back.
Frederika, San Francisco, USA

 

A fashion tip from Prague - Artel Style Guide...

Pour Pour is a store behind the the National Theatre: this store sells clothes designed by students who are studying fashion design in Prague, so often they have very original pieces that are not too expensive. They also offer second-hand pieces. Trust me! This store is filled with very fun and totally unique things. Address: Vorsilska 6 (entrance on Ostrovni) Metro: Narodni trida.
Karen Feldman, Author, Prague Artel Style

 

A terrific, cheeky guidebook...

If you haven't already done so, purchase a copy of Karen Feldman's self-published guide to Prague (under the imprint "Artel"). Karen is a native Californian who has lived in Prague since 1994 where she owns a luxury crystal company also called "Artel". It is a terrific guide -- and having written guides myself, I am something of a judge! We bought our copy in Prague, but it's readily available here in North America: http://artelstyle.com/
Penina, Toronto, Canada

Editor's note: Journeywoman will be using this guidebook when I visit Prague. I was very impressed with Karen's statements in her opening chapter and think her style is terrific. She writes:

'I personally invited all the shops, hotels (where I stayed for at least one night, restaurants, cafes, and sights in this book (OK, minus the helicopter and hot air balloon rides, which I just found out about recently). That is, every entry in this book is something I personally recommend based on my own experience. I did not receive any discounts, payments, or kickbacks in exchange for inclusion or a positive review in this book Call me naive but I thought that was the norm...'

 

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Six Meals in Prague

 

 

 

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