The Petschek Villa is Located in Wintrova 3, Prague 6 Bubenec, Prague, Czechia. It is the private residence of the Ambassador of the United States of America. It was built in 1924-19289 by wealthy banker Otto Petschek. The building can be accessed from the narrow street ‘Ronalda Reagana’ on the North side of the complex. The entire site is enclosed with a cast-iron fence, strengthened by stone balustrades. The main entrance to the site is through a large robust cast-iron gate. It can only be operated mechanically by the security team. A large stone gateway arch encloses this gate. The gateway arch has double columns on each side of the gate.
These columns are a decorative version of the Greek Ionic columns. In the center of this arch, we see a prominent leaf molding. The upper part of the gateway is more rectilinear and features dentil molding. Over the columns, on both sides of the gate, stands a large lamp-like decorative sculpture. Upon entering the site, there is a security room to the right and a greenhouse for growing vegetables to the left. The majority of the vegetables used in the kitchen are grown in this greenhouse. The greenhouse is hidden behind a free-standing wall resembling the front façade of the security room, matching the symmetry followed throughout the villa. This architectural balance has been achieved with the help of stone façade structures on both the sides. The stone has blackened over time. All the cars used by the residence are parked on either side of the entrance ramp, and on the right-hand side there is a garage situated at the back of the security room.
The entrance ramp further bifurcates into different entries to the Villa. Proceeding further toward the right-hand direction leads visitors to the front entrance of the Petschek Villa. There is a cul-de-sac in front of the main entrance, allowing cars to turn around and exit the site. The entrance portico is supported by six large Corinthian columns. The structure resembling an entablature resting on these columns has a large-spaced dental molding. The right and left facades of this entrance portico have one oval window and a series of arched windows. These windows have two supports, each of which resembles curved leaves. Each of these windows have a cast-iron grill, with the grill molding reflecting leaves and creepers. The railings on the upper floor and throughout the villa are made of cast iron and seem to be inspired by vines and other plants. Through the entrance portico there is a wide flight of stairs climbing up the plinth of the building. These stairs further separate at right angles to provide two entry doors to the Villa. These steps, too, have a similar cast-iron creeper-like railing as described earlier. We can see three very large windows while entering through either one of those doors. These windows are supported by the curved-leaf moldings and bear a cast-iron grill as well. The flooring for this entire entry space seems to be made of white marble with carpeted steps. The portico is well lit with artificial lighting fixtures adding to a sense of grandeur of the Villa. These light fixtures feature warm yellow lights that contribute to the historic feel of the building. They too, like the other majority of metal elements in the building, are made with cast-iron and have leaf-like moldings. The light fixtures have a small elements of brass painted in gold used as the topmost leaves in the molding.
DSN S 546: Interdisciplinary Design Studio, Spring 2018
College of Design | Iowa State University
Preservation & Cultural Heritage Czech Republic: International Perspectives and Design Issues
Diane Al Shihabi, Ph.D.
Department of Interior Design
Mikesch Muecke, Ph.D.
Department of Architecture