The large Lichtenstein Palace on the Kampa Island stands just by the river Vltava and it was always threatened by the floods. The facade of the building is in the water. Originally a Baroque palace, it was rebuilt many times. There are luxurious apartments at the present and it hosts important guests such as presidents and monarchs.
In the 16 th century, the area of the palace belonged to the Knights of the Maltese Order. After the big fire of Prague Lesser Town in 1541, the debris of burnt houses was brought to the island, which strengthened its shores.
History of the palace
Krystof Kobr of Kobrsperk had built a house there, but he was executed for participating in the conspiracy against Emperor Ferdinand II. The next owner of the building, the imperial commissioner Frantisek Helfrid of Kaiserstein, made it a Baroque palace with two towers in 1696. The important architect Giovanni Battista Alliprandi probably participated on the project. The building was called Kaiserstein Palace at the time.
The palace was bought by Jan Josef Count of Lichtenstein in 1831. He had it rebuilt in Classicist style and the two graceful towers were removed. Only a columned portal was left of the Baroque building.
A new owner and new rebuilding came in 1864. The successful miller Frantisek Odkolek bought it and wanted to have it in neo-Renaissance style. One more store was added at the top, which was criticized at the time, because it blocked the beautiful view of the historical Prague panorama from the Smetana Quay.
Finally, the City of Prague gained the Lichtenstein Palace. It was occupied by Nazis during the World War II. and offices were made there after the war. The palace was in bad condition because of the permanent contact with the river Vltava, so it had to be restored in 1980s.
Apartments for important guests
Luxurious apartments for important guests were made inside the palace during the reconstruction. The Lichtenstein Palace has already hosted personalities such as British Queen Elisabeth II. with her husband Prince Phillip in 1996, Spanish King and Queen, the Dutch and Danish Queens and others.
The Lichtenstein Palace is used by the Government of the Czech Republic at the present time.