Rudolfinum is a neo-renaissance building, standing on the right bank of the River Vltava. The money for its construction was donated by the First Czech Savings Bank on the occasion of its 50th anniversary. The newly constructed building was named after a crown prince Rudolph (Archduke of Austria and crown prince of Austro-Hungarian Empire).
Two architects, Josef Zítek and Josef Schulz, worked on its construction between 1876-1881. It was intended to be a gallery as well as a great concert hall. A concert hall called Dvořákova síň, still in use today, was finished in 1884 and the gallery can be found in the upper floors.
After the foundation of Czechoslovakia, the Rudolfinum turned into a seat of Czechoslovak parliament, which held its meetings here between 1919 and 1941. After a German takeover of our country, Rudolfinum reverted to its original purpose – a concert hall, where important concerts were held on various occasions – such as celebration of Adolf Hitler’s birthday or The Day of Heroes (A National Holiday of the times, created by Nazis).
After the end of WWII was the building was returned to the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra.
The major restoration was carried out between 1990 and 1992, when steps were taken to restore everything what you can possibly think of – the air-conditioning, heating, and security systems, as well as the building itself,
Nowadays the Rudolfinum is used for art exhibitions and important concerts. Many classical music festivals, such as the Prague Proms and Prague Spring, are held at Dvořákova síň – the largest concert hall in the building. So if you ever consider hearing some some great classical music while taking in astounding decor, the Rudolfinum is a building you should put on your list!
Address: náměstí Jana Palacha 79/1, Prague
Map Ref.: 50.0895239, 14.4153072
Official website: http://www.rudolfinum.cz/en