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“More Liberace Than Authentic”

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Alchymist Nosticova Palace
Ranked #27 of 649 Hotels in Prague
Certificate of Excellence
Storrs, Connecticut, United States
Level 3 Contributor
22 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
“More Liberace Than Authentic”
Reviewed 27 July 2014

As a fan of boutique hotels, my 3-star rating is based on “bang for the buck” (compared to the other places we stayed in the Czech Republic) and takes into account the size of the room, street noise/window light/view, cost of the room, vague website descriptions and the fact that this hotel is not and never was a palace. In fact, the over-the-top décor, painted vaulted ceilings etc. are all contemporary faux (Italian) palace (at least that is what the front desk staff told me). To me, it felt more Disney or Las Vegas than Prague. We stayed at the Alchymist Nosticova Palace for our last night in the Czech Republic. We stayed in one of the two “Gothic Deluxe Rooms” on the ground floor. I wish I could remember the name of the room – as there might be better rooms in the hotel. The hotel website shows photos of rooms, but the photos do not identify specific rooms, so seemingly you cannot book via their website based on a photo or even specific room description (for instance, you will be assigned one of two “Gothic Deluxe Rooms” or one of eight “Junior Suites”). Our room was located to the left of the main entry door, street level, on the corner of the hotel, at the intersection of two streets. We had two windows with heavy drapes that opened to the sidewalk and pedestrian traffic a few feet outside the window (no view whatsoever). This hotel is unusual in that it has AC (individual wall units). Unfortunately, the AC in our room struggled to cool the air – but the windows opened onto the foot traffic. So the room was dark and stuffy. The good stuff: the lobby, lounge/breakfast area is ornate/gaudy in kind of a “Liberace” fun way. The Nosticova Palace has a complimentary wine and cheese hour. The breakfast was the best of our stay in the Czech Republic. The staff seemed professional and helpful/top notch. The OK stuff: of the three boutique hotels we stayed in while visiting the Czech Republic, this was our least favorite. The room was by far the smallest and darkest and most expensive and the area no better (in fact, less desirable) than our other hotel in Prague (where we stayed on arrival for 5 nights).

Room Tip: Avoid our room - ground level, Gothic Deluxe, next to the hotel door, on the intersection of two str...
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  • Stayed June 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank DanielML
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
AlchymistLuxuryGroup, Manažer at Alchymist Nosticova Palace, responded to this review, 14 August 2014
Dear Madam,

thank you very much for taking the time and sharing your opinion on Alchymist Nosticova Palace with us and the TripAdvisor community.

We were very pleased to hear your praise on our breakfast, complimentary wine and cheese and staff.

We are however truly sorry that the Gothic Deluxe room you have reserved as well as the air conditioning system did not make you feel comfortable. There are individual AC units in every single of our rooms. This is caused by the fact that our building is a part UNESCO heritage and there is no possibility of putting a central AC system similar to the hotels situated in the new, modern buildings inside them.

After reading your TripAdvisor feedback we were particularly sorry about you refusing to move to a higher category of room although this has been offered to you by our reception staff immediately after you mentioned the inadequate performance of the air conditioner in your room. This would have given you an opportunity to, perhaps, make your stay more enjoyable.

In your review you also mentioned the style of the hotel was not convincing enough for you. This we feel very sorry about since the pictures of the hotel are completely authentic and match the reality. We do not believe we by any mean misguide our clients. Perhaps you just did not have enough time to closely examine the photographs when making the reservation and therefore you were not really familiar with the hotel´s characteristics...

I would like to reassure all the TripAdvisor readers that the room categories described on our webpage as well as the pictures attached are very much based on reality. We do wish to let our future clients know that our primary interest is to meet or even exceed their expectations and in case they are not satisfied for any reason we always do our best to improve these conditions and make their stay with us memorable.

Madam, although we were not able to meet your expectations we would hereby like to express our thanks to you for staying in Alchymist Nosticova Palace for 5 nights and we do believe you only have fond memories of Prague.

With Kind Regards
Lucie Nizka
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Seattle
Level 5 Contributor
61 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
Reviewed 27 July 2014

Everything was superb! From the moment we arrived, the hotel was perfect - it felt as if we had our own personal place in the city. The hotel was able to send a car service to pick us up from the train station (with last minute notice). Their service was impeccable. They helped us choose very delicious places for dinner, directed us towards a boat to take us up the river, gave us lots of travel tips, etc. The swimming pool was in one of their other unique properties and the staff there was equally patient and helpful. The room itself was very quaint - we had a piano and a kitchen and second half bath. It was perfect for our family of 5, with 3 boys under age 8. We thought someone would complain about the noise from our kids, but no one did, and we never heard anyone else. The breakfast was beautiful and absolutely delicious - our picky boys ate a ton. The location was perfect - we were within a few blocks of everything.

Room Tip: Wifi was limited for us, but we were able to gain access from our provider. We had the attic room w...
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  • Stayed July 2014, travelled with family
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank spospk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
AlchymistLuxuryGroup, Manažer at Alchymist Nosticova Palace, responded to this review, 20 August 2014
Dear Madam, Sir,

I would like to thank you for taking time and posting such a good review on Tripadvisor. It was a pleasure to read that you enjoyed your stay with us. We take the advantage of boutique size hotel that allows us to provide our guests with very special and attentive care and thank you very much for your opinion.
We would be more than happy to welcome you back in the near future and please contact me personally if I can be of any assistance with your next booking.
With kindest regards,

Lucie and colleagues
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London, United Kingdom
Level 5 Contributor
69 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 68 helpful votes
Reviewed 19 July 2014

Had a very pleasant stay here for four nights with wife and daughter recently. This was our second visit to the hotel and the staff were, as before, incredibly helpful and attentive to our needs. The hotel is situated in the tranquil left bank area of Mala Strana - I see that some reviewers have criticised the location due the fact that is located away from the frenetic bustle of the Old Town but this, for us at least, is one of the most appealing attributes of the hotel. Perhaps the critics should consult a map before planning their next trip? The only reason I am not awarding 5/5 this time (as I did the last time we stayed) is that the hotel's garden area, which used to be a great place to have a relaxed drink, seems to have fallen into semi-disuse - this is a great shame and I would encourage the management to think about restoring it to its former status. Nevertheless, a very pleasant stay once again.

  • Stayed July 2014, travelled with family
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank jfletcher
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
AlchymistLuxuryGroup, Manažer at Alchymist Nosticova Palace, responded to this review, 22 July 2014
Dear Madam,

Thank you very much for taking the time to post such a great review on TripAdvisor.

Your comments have been shared with the team here at the hotel which is a great motivation to us. We would also like to thank you for your continued loyalty to Alchymist Nosticova Palace and it is always a pleasure to welcome you back to your home away from home.

One of our most important tasks is to learn directly from our guests about their experience. Our goal is to provide the highest quality of friendly and courteous service and ensure a consistent standard of excellence throughout our facility.

I do hope we will have the opportunity to welcome you back to Alchymist Luxury Group in the near future so that we can demonstrate a higher and more consistent level of service.

We look forward to seeing you again on your next visit and please feel free to contact us should you require any assistance in the meantime.

Kind regards,
Lucie Nizka
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Dubai
Level 5 Contributor
52 reviews
49 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 49 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 July 2014

we stayed here for few nights and it is a charming hotel and we enjoyed it. I will give the full mark as I don't want to effect TA score because the staff really deserve a salute.
- Location is very good and in a quiet area
- Great staff and very helpful.
- Rooms are charming as it is an old building and the toilets are extremely nicely done with excellent toiletries.

For me to stay here again and pay 200 Euros, I expect:
- better quality mattress, better pillow and duvet.
- you need to provide a large TV minimum 32 inch.

The most worrying point during my stay was the Fire Exit stairs.
- How come there are no doors to the stairs?
- How come the stairs are fitted with carpets which are flammable?
- The rooms on the top floor had no fire escape whatsoever.

Stayed July 2014, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
Thank ZeeF44
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
AlchymistLuxuryGroup, Manažer at Alchymist Nosticova Palace, responded to this review, 30 July 2014
Dear Sir,

Thank you for taking the time to relay your constructive feedback regarding your recent stay with us at Alchymist Nosticova Palace.

Of all the positive points you mentioned, needless to say the most rewarding to hear is the appraisal of the staff you encountered. Customer service is always the most important part of staying in a hotel and I'm happy to hear you found out team members attentive, friendly and professional.

We take all feedback seriously, as it is through learning of the areas where we fail our guests' expectations that we can make the necessary improvements to the service offered and all trip advisors comments are taken on board.

Regarding your critical remark about the fire exit stairs. I do fully respect your concern, but being in an old building, with limited space options, it is almost impossible to find another solution than the main stairs as a route out of the building in the case of an emergency. I do agree with you that modern, large purpose built hotels do provide easier and more flexible fire emergency procedures, but please rest assured that our hotel is fully compliant with all laws in this respect. The carpet on the stairs is certificated as non-flammable.


Thank you once again for the informative review; we hope to welcome you back in the near future.

If I can be of any assistance in the meantime please contact me directly.

Yours sincerely,
Lucie Nizka
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level 2 Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 July 2014

This is small boutique hotel with some interesting furniture and quaint rooms but missing are the usual facilities that one expects from a 4 or 5 star hotel. The staff try very hard to be friendly and helpful, although sometimes it is obvious the pleasantries are forced through gritted teeth. The rooms are good size for Europe. The breakfast has good variety for a small hotel, but again only 2-3 star standard. Cold food was adequate but hot food was cooked several hours before I arrived at 8.30am. The staff will cook something they call an 'omelette' for you, believe me, you are unlikely to go back for a second. Who ever cooked mine was obviously multitasking, and cooking was not their usual vocation. A disappointment was the way this hotel adds additional cost of certain items normally included in a buffet breakfast of other hotels, for example they charge 210 czk per serve per person of smoked salmon. Smoke salmon has been included in every buffet breakfast at every other hotel I have stayed in Germany Brussels and Czech Republic.
If you like being away for the crowds that frequent major tourist attractions this could be a good option. There are some restaurants close by,
If you are wanting to see the sights of Prague, as I did, this hotel is not well located unless you are happy to pay for taxis and spend considerable time I traffic jams. It took me 40 minutes to walk to the Prague astronomical clock the first day. Google maps claims it will be only a 20 minute walk, however that estimate clearly does not take into account massive crowds on bridge and in lane ways you encounter during the later half of the walk. Taxes are not easy to find and when you do find one take about 15 minutes to the centre of Prague, I think due to number of one way streets.
There is no restaurant in the hotel, no room service for hot meals ( some fruit and pastries are available). No gym, lobby small. You feel like you are staying in someone's house, it does not feel like a hotel. There is a restaurant I their sister hotel, 10 minutes walk over cobblestones, or the hotel will provide a free car.
I can only assume the high ratings given by other people are because of the impressive furniture and wall hangings. For me, those items are nice, but of more importance is the standard of the room. Mine was adequate, although very little nature light, the room dark, and the bed and pillows were much worse than I had experienced in any 4 or 5 star hotel. The shower in not separate, but in the bath. The remotes for TVs and air con did not work well, and I usually had to turn the devises on manually.
Hot water is also a problem, one night I had no hot water at all.

Although I had a room that was supposedly non smoking, smoke came through the air-conditioner. The air conditioner vent is located outside next to the balconies where guests are allowed to smoke. Every time a guess smoked on their balcony, I had smoke in my room, the smell of which lingered for hours. I had to turn the air conditioner off on many occasions to avoid the smell.
There is a fitness centre available at another hotel owned by this hotel, but walking 10 minutes to go to facilities that should be in the hotel is not my idea of a 4-5 star hotel.

There is no under cover parking available, however there is parking for 450czk a day in the yard of the property across the road from the hotel. That properly also owned by Alchymist, appears to be a failed venture, but in bygone days was likely once a hotel.
I was surprised that when I stayed in July, although the Internet booking site said I got the last room, this was obviously not true. the staff confirmed there were many empty rooms, and I saw very few other guests at this hotel. I was often the only one who turned up for the free wine and cheese, and often saw no one else at breakfast.
It seems most other tourists realize the disadvantages of this hotel, and unlike me, have not been sucked In by the good reviews on trip advisor. Next time I come to Prague I will stay in one of the many hotels in the heart of the city, walking 40 minutes over cobble stones each way to the attractions from this hotel is a waste of precious holiday time. There is a scarcity of public toilets in the square in Prague, so being this far away for your own bathroom is another disadvantage.
For the price of the room I expected much better, had this been been half the price and rated 3 star, I would have not been surprised. Be careful, do not be taken in by fancy furniture and free cheap wine and cheese for one hour a day, it does not make up for the major features lacking at this hotel.wifi slow, but included in price.

Room Tip: Care should be taken, the rooms are not insulated and it is easy to hear other guests. Fortunately i...
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  • Stayed July 2014, travelled solo
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Richardclarke13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
AlchymistLuxuryGroup, Manažer at Alchymist Nosticova Palace, responded to this review, 23 July 2014
Dear Richardclarke13,
since I have already replied your partner who stayed with you in the same room during your stay and since there is no significant variation in the negative comments towards us, I will direct my reply to the Tripadvisor community.

I would like to say thank you to all of the wonderful guests coming here to genuinely enjoy their stay with us. Please continue to leave responses in a constructive and true manner, as these will always be gratefully received. We are there for you and our aim is always to make your stay as memorable as possible. This factor was, and will remain, our genuine philosophy.

But we cannot and we should not allow any guests to try to seek compensation from us, using the threat of a bad Tripadvisor review as leverage.

We trust you will all understand our position and support our team in their effort to do our job the best we can.

With kind regards,
Lucie Nizka
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level 4 Contributor
29 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 51 helpful votes
Reviewed 17 July 2014 via mobile

I felt very mislead by the excellent reviews on trip advisor about this hotel. The location is NOT good. Five minutes walk to Charles bridge sounds good. But you should know that the bridge is always congested with tourists and buskers and it takes 10-15 minutes each way to cross. Then there is another 10-15 minute walk through congested lanes before you reach the town square which is the heart of Prague. Many other attractions even further away.
The hotel is very small, no restaurant,room service limited to cold food and soup. Not what you expect for room service and it feels as though they only provide something so they can keep star resting up. Breakfast had good variety and fruit was good, but hot food all prepared prior to 7am so it is all cold and tired and rubbery unless you arrive early. Unable to adjust temperature of Air conditioners in rooms so it was either stuffy or freezing cold (17 degrees). First room we were allocated had strange layout and included old kitchenette where ensuite should have been located, with no plates or cooking utensils. We awoke at 12.20am by occupants of room above who sang and danced directly over our bed for over an hour. There is no sound insulation between floors. Pillows were absolutely disgusting. We both awoke with headaches and when we opened pillow cover to see what was inside we found only washed raw cotton, the type you
find in the cheapest of cushions. I would not put my dog to sleep on the pillows they were so bad . All of this in a room described as a 'junior suite'! It was certainly no suiteStaff were quick to change our room and supply appropriate pillows, however they were not as fast to rectify the more horrid problem we endured - no water at all for all day and night on our second day. We had to flush the toilet with a bucket of Water and could not shower or wash make up off until the next day. When the water was reconnected it was filthy and we had no hot water for many hours. When I complained for the 5th time eventually manager offered us the opportunity to change to one of their other two hotels which they own. It was 1am by this time this offer was made and we choose to stay. The offer should have been made much earlier . We were not compensated for the inconvenience of lack of water although promised we would be. Car park is in a yard not covered 450 crown a day. Most expensive in Europe we
have ever paid for parking not covered . Very limited basic toiletries, soap and shampoo , no hair conditioner supplied. Bed in first room we were given was very old and saggy and most uncomfortable. Second bed was acceptable . Internet painfully slow. Staff very friendly some lovely furniture in some rooms. and free cheese and wine for one hour every evening is a nice touch . But both wine and cheese are very cheap in Prague, so it does not compensate for all the negatives. There are dozens of hotels in the heart of Prague close to restaurants and all attractions, no need to stay so far away for less than average facilities at unjustifiable high rates.

  • Stayed July 2014
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Marellalouise
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
AlchymistLuxuryGroup, Manager at Alchymist Nosticova Palace, responded to this review, 18 July 2014
Dear Marellalouise,

We appreciate the fact that you took your time to review our hotel and share your opinions.

Since this guests feedback was elaborated I will try to answer the main dissatisfaction points as briefly as possible and explain our point of view to the tripadvisor community.
Regarding the pillows, it is the first time we have a complain of this sort and we are sorry this guests found the two options of pillows in the room not adequate. The fact that they caused a headache is quite unusual but we will definitely investigate that.
Our Junior suites are bigger than average European standard Junior Suites. They range from 35 to 42 Sqm. Nevertheless we were happy to upgrade the room free of charge to a Royal Suite since this guest found insufficient the room that was booked.
The lack of water, as explained by our team during the stay, was due to a problem in the neighbourhood and not in the hotel. 6 blocks were cut out of water from 10am till 11pm on one day. We honestly did our best to make this issue out of our control as small as possible to our guests.
Our car park is not covered but privately owned by the hotel and safely guarded by stone walls and a gate. During the summer period is perfectly convenient. During the winter period we use an indoors public car park due to the snow.
We are delighted to offer a complimentary wine and cheese time during the afternoons for our guests. Nevertheless we do not do it from a profitability perspective. It’s just a way to say thank you to our guests.

Finally and on a serious note, we have noticed that this guests posted a review about the Infant Jesus of Prague which is not just an iconic landmark but a very strong and important symbol in the catholic religion worldwide. When this guest describes the infant Jesus as “pathetic” and “a kids doll in a dress”a lot of people are getting offended to say the least. We are not a religious company and the Czech Republic is one of the most atheist countries in the world, but we do respect the importance of religious symbols in the different religious beliefs. We would like to ask politely this guest to please delete the review she posted regarding the Infant Jesus or Tripadvisor to do it in case that does not happen.


Sincerely,
Lucie Nizka
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Venice
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 17 July 2014 via mobile

We had a fantastic stay at this hotel. The staff is always pleasant and attentive. Our room was just sublime and very comfortable. The location is just excellent, near from the center of the city. I also had the possibility to use their great fitness center with spa, sauna etc.. the next time we will spent much time.

  • Stayed June 2014
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Jessy A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
AlchymistLuxuryGroup, Manager at Alchymist Nosticova Palace, responded to this review, 18 July 2014
Dear Jessy,

many thanks for your time and for posting a review on TripAdvisor.com.

I am glad you have found Alchymist Nosticova Palace a pleasant place for your stay in Prague and that you have especially enjoyed the location and the room. Thank you for having mentioned also the fitness center and health club, with free access, at the disposal for our clients in our sister property Alchymist Grand hotel & SPA, only 5 minutes by walk from our hotel .

We will be delighted should you choose our hotel for your future stay in Prague.

Our best regards,
Lucie and colleagues
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Alchymist Nosticova Palace

Property: Alchymist Nosticova Palace
Address: Nosticova 463/1, Prague 118 00, Czech Republic (Formerly Alchymist Residence Nosticova)
Phone Number:
Region: Czech Republic > Bohemia > Prague > Mala Strana (Little Quarter) , Praha 1
Amenities:
Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#7 Romantic Hotel in Prague
#23 Luxury Hotel in Prague
#28 Family Hotel in Prague
#50 Business Hotel in Prague
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:5 star — Alchymist Nosticova Palace 5*
Number of rooms: 16
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Also Known As:
Alchymist Residence Nosticova Prague
Alchymist Residence Nosticova Hotel Prague

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