Kotva department store closes for reconstruction, it will take two years
The Kotva department store in Prague 1 closed for reconstruction yesterday. It will last for two years. Luxury shops will be built on the lower floors and offices on the higher ones. The surroundings of Kotva will also be transformed, for example, the current entrance to the grocery store will disappear. The seven-storey building with a total area of 28,000 square metres was opened in 1975.
The form of the building is expected to remain essentially the same, but remediation of asbestos in the façade, for example, will be required. Significant changes await the internal layout. After the renovation, the anchor will no longer be just a department store. Offices will be created, but shops with the necessary amenities will remain. On the seventh floor there will be a restaurant with a terrace.
The current entrance from náměstí Republiky to the Albert store in the basement of Kotva will disappear. A new one will be built, it will be circular in shape and will be in a different location. The area at the entrance from the other side towards Jakubská Street will be modified.
The Kotva department store was opened in 1975 as an example of a luxury Czechoslovak department store. At the time of its opening, Kotva was the fifth largest department store in Europe with a sales area of 22,160 square metres, which was able to serve up to 75,000 customers a day thanks to its 2,000 employees. The department store belongs to the so-called second generation of Czech department stores. The building on the ground plan of interconnected hexagons was designed by architects Vera Machonina and Vladimir Machonin and is considered one of the most important Czech buildings of the first half of the 1970s.
After 1989, Kotva and other department stores had to face the newly emerging modern shopping centres. For a long time, the department store struggled with a lack of interest in renting retail space, leaving vacant retail space on some floors. The building has been owned since 2020 by Generali Real Estate, which bought it from PNS.