Prague Exhibition Center celebrates 130 years this year
This year, the Prague Exhibition Center and the Industrial Palace are celebrating 130 years of their opening.
When architect Bedřich Münzberg was commissioned to build the industrial palace, he wanted to take the traditional approach of bricks and plaster. But his plans are thwarted by the young architects who have just returned from Paris, full of ideas. In 1889, Paris hosted the Universal Exhibition and it was there that they had just seen the impressive Eiffel Tower for the first time.
It was such an inspiration that they harassed Münzberg to implement a similar concept. And that’s how the building became a half-iron, half-traditional construction. It was quite new at the time.
Inauguration in 1891
The construction of the Prague Exhibition Center itself was certainly not straightforward. She had to deal with a tragic flood and workers’ strikes. Despite these obstacles, it finally opened in 1891.
This event was preceded by the Territorial Jubilee Exhibition which was a great success. Over 2 million people came to see it, with some celebrities of the time making sure they would also be there – for example, Prince Jiří Lobkowicz and Archduke Karel Ludvík.
The Jubilee Exhibition became a historic moment on the cultural scene of the time, presaging a series of other important events, thanks to which Prague 7 became the center of the city’s trade fairs.
Since its opening, the Prague Exhibition Center has seen good and bad times (such as the fire which caused enormous damage to the western part of the palace in 2008). Despite all this, it is now a popular venue for various cultural, entertainment and social events including the Prague Harley Days, the Prague Ice Cream Festival, the Metronome Music Festival and many more.
The Industrial Palace complex was also lively through a whole range of leisure activities. Visitors can enjoy a barbecue area, a large picnic meadow, or a fun adventure playground with a rope trail.
Sports enthusiasts will not fail to welcome the fitness area, the cycle park or the swimming pool. The possibilities are pretty much endless.
Among others, you will find some popular tourist attractions, including the Lapidarium (sculpture exhibitions) of the National Museum, the Marold Panorama or the marine aquarium Sea World.
The Parc des Expositions is celebrating its 130th anniversary this year and has offered the city an original gift – the inauguration of Expolab – a venue for hybrid events.
The Parc des Expositions team is responding to the Coronavirus pandemic by refocusing on the online world, which has become an alternative means of organizing cultural events. This will make the premises of the Industrial Palace available for regular and online events, in which people can participate from anywhere in the world.
Participants can expect video mapping, virtual settings and holographic transmissions, bringing a totally unmatched experience.
Thanks to these innovations, the monumental site of Holešovice is no longer just a historical monument, but also a modern technological landmark of today’s Prague.