The Hedonist: A hazy night out in Prague

What to see and where to be seen

Amid the modern stylings of Prague's 987 Hotel (00 420 255 737 2004; at 987 Senovazne Namesti, I guzzle coffee while striving to regain a normal thought process.

My first notion is to glance around this luxurious designer stowaway – situated a few hundred yards from Prague's historic centre – and ponder how many Italians travel here. Then, it hits me. My high-cost, high-bill, nth-generation smartphone is gone. I barely saw the room, so it's definitely not there. I've got almost a full day before my flight back to reality and the dreaded confession to the boss that the scoop on our next deal is in the hands of mobsters. Or that could just be the hangover talking.

Quickly, I retrace my steps. On arrival, I had the compulsory beer and sausage at a stand on Wenceslas Square, but I didn't touch my phone. Slinking around the corner via Stepanska street, I got a few Czech craft beers at expat-classic Jama the Hollow (00 420 224 222 383; at 7 Jama. Whether my eyes were wet and clouded by nostalgia for those post-Velvet Revolution days, or the ubiquitous cigarette smoke, I didn't look at my phone there either. I did pick up a like-minded Czech, though, who insisted on taking me to some of the city's best cures for, shall we say, writer's block.

We emerged from the tourist scrum at Old Town Square, an unmissable sight and probably the most complete old town area in Europe. We weren't hungry for the roast meat or trdelnik (sweet pastries) sold at the square's market – a virtual year-round experience despite associations with Christmas – so my partner-in-crime whisked me from the overpriced bars on the square to the Tolkienian literary café Tynska Literarni Kavarna (00 420 224 827 807; knihy nearby at 6 Tynska. Here, we drank as many fresh Bernards as the waitress could pencil on to our bill and enjoyed the secluded stone courtyard. It's the type of place where even holding a fancy phone would prompt an existential argument ... and so I didn't.

We glided up the hill to Prague Castle on one of the historic trams, then took a cobbled lane to Terasa U Zlate Studne (00 420 257 533 322; at 166/4 U Zlate studne, a sumptuous dining experience once booked for Barack Obama, although the President did not have time to go. I know I called a cab from there, so that's not where the phone went missing.

We repaired to the Prague Beer Museum Pub (00 420 732 330 912; at 46 Dlouha, a boozy hangout delightfully unencumbered by a museum of any kind. It just sells beer from a 41-page menu.

I return here and look under every table before I remember how, after sampling almost every beer on offer, we landed at the Art Deco hangout Café Slavia (00 420 224 218 493; at 1 Smetanovo nabrezi, where artists and writers have got out of their minds since the 1880s.

There, underneath Viktor Oliva's characteristic painting The Absinthe Drinker, I found my phone. A swift dial later, and I'm on the plane back with a lingering headache and the curious desire to do it all over again.

A Hedonist's Guide to ... (Hg2) is a luxury city guide series for the more decadent traveller. For more information, go to

Arts and Entertainment
The Ridiculous Six has been produced by Adam Sandler, who also stars in it
filmNew controversy after nine Native American actors walked off set
Life and Style
The original ZX Spectrum was simple to plug into your TV and get playing on
techThirty years on, the ZX Spectrum is back, after a fashion
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebookHow to enjoy the perfect short break in 20 great cities
Independent Travel Videos
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in Amsterdam
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in Giverny
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in St John's
Independent Travel Videos
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Travel

    Recruitment Genius: Technical Supervisor

    £24800 - £29000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: As one of London's leading Muse...

    Recruitment Genius: Centre Manager

    £14000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...

    Guru Careers: Accountant

    £28 - 45k (DOE): Guru Careers: An Accountant is needed to take control of the ...

    Recruitment Genius: Hotel Assistant Manager

    £18000 - £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This hotel in Chadderton is a p...

    Day In a Page

    'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

    Bread from heaven

    Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
    Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

    How 'the Axe' helped Labour

    UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
    Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

    The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

    A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
    Welcome to the world of Megagames

    Welcome to the world of Megagames

    300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
    'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

    Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

    Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
    Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

    Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

    The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
    Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

    Vince Cable exclusive interview

    Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
    Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

    Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

    Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
    Russell Brand's interview with Ed Miliband has got everyone talking about The Trews

    Everyone is talking about The Trews

    Russell Brand's 'true news' videos attract millions of viewers. But today's 'Milibrand' interview introduced his resolutely amateurish style to a whole new crowd
    Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

    It's time for my close-up

    Meet the man who films great whites for a living
    Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

    Homeless people keep mobile phones

    A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before
    'Queer saint' Peter Watson left his mark on British culture by bankrolling artworld giants

    'Queer saint' who bankrolled artworld giants

    British culture owes a huge debt to Peter Watson, says Michael Prodger
    Pushkin Prizes: Unusual exchange programme aims to bring countries together through culture

    Pushkin Prizes brings countries together

    Ten Scottish schoolchildren and their Russian peers attended a creative writing workshop in the Highlands this week
    14 best kids' hoodies

    14 best kids' hoodies

    Don't get caught out by that wind on the beach. Zip them up in a lightweight top to see them through summer to autumn
    Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The acceptable face of the Emirates

    The acceptable face of the Emirates

    Has Abu Dhabi found a way to blend petrodollars with principles, asks Robert Fisk