On the same well-guarded and very little trafficked street as the US embassy, the Aria occupies a former mail sorting centre that was utterly redone with Rocco Magnoli modernist designs and trendsetting architecture before its opening in 2003.
In taste and comfort, the Aria leads the way with a cream, monochrome and muted Mediterranean colour palette, red-stained hardwood furnishings, deep tubs and bucket showerheads - plus, of course, that expertly curated iPod in each room for carrying around town with you.
Its gray slate entryway, leading to an airy lounge and the Coda dining room, signals something special from the start, and indeed the number of honeymoons booked here is hard to believe. One reason is the hotel’s ability to book the next-door Vrtba gardens, a gorgeous, formal Baroque green space for ceremonies.
Eating and drinking
The Coda dining room, where local jazz stars tickle the ivories of the Czech-made Petrof piano, does elegant breakfasts and stylish light suppers in an airy atrium.
Apart from the La Prairie Salon, music's the thing: staff musicologist, Ivana Stehlikova oversees a huge music and dvd lending library, all free to guests, as are the cosy screening rooms off the lobby.
The concierge is in the know on the city's hottest concert and theatre tickets and Aria's service is otherwise tops (note the uniformed but friendly porters) just as at its sister establishment in the Mala Strana district, the Golden Well Hotel.
Who stays there
Couples on special occasions, touring artists, trendy business folk, honeymooners.
Excellent specials are available, breakfast is 15 euros per person and 10 per cent VAT is not included in room rate.
- Business Centre
- Fitness Centre
- High-Speed Internet
- Room Service
- Business travellers
- Culture vultures
- Mature travellers
- Live entertainment
- Special occasions
- Design and architecture
Pros & Cons
- Vast free DVD library
- Free iPod use, pre-loaded in guest rooms
- Gorgeous modernist designs
- Vrtba Gardens can be reserved for weddings
- Location a few minutes' walk across river from Old Town