Due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, we have decided to postpone Open House Prague 2021 to the summer. The festival will now take place on August 2–8, 2021. Dozens of buildings that are usually not accessible will open their gates to the public on the weekend of August 7–8, and there will also be a number of accompanying events on the weekdays. With the motto of the festival being “Architecture for everyone”, tours of the buildings are available for anyone from the general public, including people with visual and hearing disabilities.
“Although we were optimistic at the beginning of the year, the current state of the pandemic has once again forced us to reevaluate all festival preparations. The concept of the festival is based on a direct architectural experience, and we do not want to deprive our visitors of that. We have considered a few different dates and possibilities on our part as well as on the part of our important partners, and we would like the festival to take place in its standard form, observing all the government-imposed measures, of course, because the safety and health of everybody is our number one priority,” says Andrea Šenkyříková, festival director.
As the visuals for this year suggest, showing a drawing by the recognized illustrator Jan Šrámek, one of the biggest attractions of the seventh Open House Prague is ARA Palace. Located on Perlová Street and built in the 1930s, the imposing Fuctionalist palace and former department store is still remembered by many under its original name Perla. Noted for its curved windows on the corner, the palace was constructed using a steel frame, similarly to New York City skyscrapers, and it has helped the palace survive two fires.
“In the palace, two floors of the HubHub coworking space with modern shared offices will be open for the public, and visitors will also have a chance to enjoy a beautiful view over the city from the terrace,” says Andrea Šenkyříková.
Since 2021 marks the 150th anniversary of the birth of Jan Kotěra, founder of modern Czech architecture, we will commemorate this important architect by opening many of his significant realizations, including Trmal Villa in Strašnice, Laichter House in Vinohrady, or Vršovice Water Tower in Michle.
“As soon as the situation allows, we will invite visitors not only to the buildings but also on walks around Prague. In collaboration with architect Zdeněk Lukeš, we will also present a series of lectures dedicated to Kotěra and his legacy,” says Andrea Šenkyříková.
Open House Prague is part of Open House Worldwide, an international network of festivals which take place in more than 45 cities around the world. With the help of hundreds of volunteers, Open House Prague is not only a cultural holiday but also a unique event with an impact on local communities and the society. The recruit of volunteers for this year has already started, and those who are interested in volunteering can sign up via this link.
While the full festival program will be announced on our website in early June, some of the newly participating buildings will be revealed gradually on our Facebook event Open House Praha 2021.
We are looking forward to seeing you!