Prague is a city that is steeped in history and culture, it has numerous magnificent castles and churches. However, there is one building that stands out, its unusual and intriguing design raises a lot of questions about its origins. The building is famously known as The Dancing House or The Fred and Ginger House.
The Dancing House, built in 1992, is a unique piece of architecture located in Prague. The building, designed by the Croatian-Czech architect Vlado Milunić and the famous Canadian architect Frank Gehry, is an excellent example of post-modern architecture.
The Dancing House comprises two parts; the larger, curved part is known as Ginger, named after the famous American actress Ginger Rogers, while the smaller, tower-like part is known as Fred, named after Fred Astaire – Ginger’s dance partner.
Now, let’s dive deeper into the surprising origins of Prague’s Dancing House.
The History of the Dancing House
The Czech Republic underwent a revolution in 1989, after which the Communist Party lost power. The country’s new government believed that this was the perfect time to showcase new and innovative architecture that represented a new era.
In 1992, Vlado Milunić, a Croatian architect, teamed up with Frank Gehry, a Canadian-American architect who had shot to fame with his design of the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, Spain. Together they designed the Dancing House, an entirely new and innovative concept that would signify the newly found freedom of the Czech Republic.
The unique design of the building represents the twin facets of Fred and Ginger, making it an unconventional building with no straight lines. The building reaches ten stories high, sitting on a plot that was previously occupied by a Baroque-style building that was destroyed during World War II.
The building represents a pair of dancers, with Fred’s tower-like structure being depicted as the male dancer while Ginger’s curved shape represents the female. The entire structure is a nod to the Czech Republic’s dance culture and pays homage to the lives of Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers, who appeared in over ten films together, leaving behind a legacy of cinematic brilliance.
Inside the Dancing House, you’ll find a luxury hotel, a restaurant, and a panoramic terrace that offers a 360-degree view of the city. Tourists and visitors alike come to witness the building’s unique architecture and take in the magnificent city view.
1. What is the Dancing House?
The Dancing House, also known as The Fred and Ginger House, is a unique post-modern building in Prague, designed by Frank Gehry and Vlado Milunic in 1992.
2. Why was the Dancing House built?
Built after the fall of communism in 1989, The Dancing House was built to represent the Czech Republic’s newfound freedom and to showcase the country’s innovative architecture.
3. Who designed the Dancing House?
The Dancing House was designed by the Croatian-Czech architect Vlado Milunić and the Canadian architect Frank Gehry.
4. What does Fred and Ginger mean?
The unique design of The Dancing House represents twin facets of Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers. The taller part of the building is called Fred, and the rounded part is named Ginger.
5. Can you go inside the Dancing House?
Yes, visitors can enter the building and find a luxury hotel, restaurant, and panoramic terrace that offers a beautiful view of the city.
Top 5 Tourist Attractions in Discover the Surprising Origins of Prague’s Dancing House
1. Prague Castle – Home to Czech royalty for over a thousand years, the Prague Castle is one of Prague’s must-see landmarks.
2. Old Town Square – Home to the famous Prague Astronomical Clock, as well as numerous other famous landmarks.
3. Charles Bridge – One of the most iconic landmarks in Prague, Charles Bridge is a must-visit for any tourist.
4. Jewish Quarter (Josefov) – Home to numerous Synagogues and Jewish Museums, Josefov showcases the city’s Jewish heritage.
5. Petřín Lookout Tower – A scaled-down version of the Eiffel Tower, Petrin Lookout Tower offers a beautiful view of the city’s skyline.