Made from four structures—a baroque palace, two medieval houses, and a neoclassical building from 1836—the Pachtuv Palace is certainly authentic. The 48-room hotel sits next to the river, just a stone's throw from the Charles Bridge and right at the edge of the Old Town fray. That hum of humanity can seep into the rooms, thanks to the tram and foot traffic along the quay. Still, with springy two-poster beds, decadent chandeliers, and hardwood floors, the rooms are spacious and opulent. Mozart, though, may not have agreed: legend has it that he was locked inside a room until he wrote six sonatas for the owner.
The rooms feel appropriately historic but still have all the mod cons, from free Wi-Fi to slippers. Some have a view of the river, others look out onto the street but have king size beds, perhaps to compensate.
YOU SHOULD KNOW If it is hot, some guests have reported that the air conditioning can be inefficient.
The bathroom has lush L'Occitane cosmetics but could be swankier, considering the vibe of the rest of the hotel.
The lobby feels a bit more more business-like than wow, but it does the job and much of the rest of the interior of the Pachtuv delivers on the glamour front.
Massages are available in your room or in the hotel's massage suite, and there are beauty treatments galore at the hotel's Sisley Institute, named for the company that makes the essential oils used in the treatments.
Have you ever thought about how lovely it would be if your shower cap smelled of essential oils? No? Well, give it a try anyway, because the Pachtuv offers three free aromatic shower caps for your bonce, with flavours including lime and rose.
The free breakfast is a little meager, but if you reach into your pocket, the Eggs Benedict is top notch. Otherwise, the hotel has the relaxed Cafe La Creme and the high-end Atelier Kalina, which serves French/Czech fusion food. Both the cafe and the restaurant have great views, and you can eat outside by the Vltava river in summer.
The Chapel Cigar Club is all about the smokes (and the fine wines and brandies), and is situated in a rather special location - a former chapel dating from 1628.
You are unlikely to need any form of transport other than your own feet (or you can rent segways just over the bridge if that's your thing). But if you do there are trams stopping nearby and the Staroměstská metro stop isn't far either.
Sophisticated Hemingway Bar (1-minute walk) is just around the corner. For more serious late-night fun, which still has a swanky feel, there is M1 Lounge (9-minute walk). Play spot the movie star or just get down with other revellers.
WHY WE LIKE IT
Not just one palace, but four: the Pachtuv Palace has luxury and history in its very walls, and the professional staff and lovely river views from the hotel's dining options are the icing on the (very fancy, and quite pricey) cake.