Prague, Czech Republic
November 26-30, 2016
Room Rate: 250 Euro
After a four hour train ride from Berlin, we had finally made it to Prague! Figuring out how to get out of the train station to meet our uber was a bit of a challenge, but after some trial and error, we made our way to the upstairs bus pick up point and found the parking lot to meet our uber driver and were on our way.
Augustine, Luxury Collection
Neighborhood: Mala Strana, Prague 1
Concierge: Yes – contact at firstname.lastname@example.org
Spa: Yes – Services include massages, body treatments, facials, manicures, and pedicures
Make a Green Choice: No
Bar and Restaurant On-Property: Yes, the Augustine Restaurant (open 7am-11pm) and the Refectory Bar (open 11am-midnight)
We arrived at the hotel at around 10pm. Had I been navigating to the hotel myself, I’m not sure that I would have found the somewhat unassuming entrance to the property (more on that later), but in any regard, we made it. The entrance to the hotel itself was festively decorated with lights and holly.
The lobby was equally low-key, with some Christmas decorations up (including a tiny Christmas tree and a nativity scene off in a corner).
We were greeted at the lobby by a friendly front desk associate and the concierge. The concierge was immediately drawn to my dog Marshall, and asked if he could pet him. As it turns out, this was the concierge I had been corresponding with regarding my inquiries on pet-friendly activities we could do in Prague! It was great to put a name to a face.
As we were being processed, the front desk associate gave us a run down of the property and asked me which platinum amenity I would like. I almost immediately opted for the 500 points, since at the Westin Grand Berlin, they mentioned dogs were not allowed at the restaurant, despite the hotel being dog-friendly. It turns out, this property allows dogs inside all the restaurants on the property, so I opted for the complimentary breakfast for my amenity instead.
We were assigned a room in the front section of the hotel, which we later learned was a newer area that had recently been re-done. Though we originally booked a Classic Room, we were upgraded to the next best room type, which was a Deluxe Room.
The front desk associate showed us to our room and pointed out some key areas of the hotel as we passed by the Spa and restaurant.
We took the elevator up to the third floor, which was gorgeously brightly lit. We made our way down the hallway and to the front wing of the building.
Our room was about a 2 minute walk from the elevators, and was located in a wonderfully quiet area of the building.
The key reader was located on the right side of the door, which also doubled as a doorbell, a “do not disturb” sign and a housekeeping request light.
The room was divided into two sections, the bedroom and the bathroom, connected by an entry landing area.
Upon entering the bedroom, there was a red overstuffed chair to my right, and the bed was situated in front of me.
The overstuffed chair was comfortable to relax on when I didn’t feel like crawling into bed (and a great place to leave my coat when I was too lazy to hang it up).
Next to it I found a small dog mat and water bowl for Marshall to use during our stay.
The bedroom was nicely large, with plenty of space to walk around the bed. The room was gorgeous, bright, and tastefully decorated.
The bed was extremely comfortable to sleep on. Brian had complained that he found the bed at the Westin Grand Berlin to be too hard for his back, but he slept wonderfully on this one. The pillows were very plush and soft to lay on (though I like a little bit more firmness in my pillows – but that’s just a personal preference).
On the bedside table on the right side was two bottles of water – one tap and one sparkling. These bottles were complimentary and we were provided with new bottles every day.
To the left of the bed was the desk, where I found a welcome note from the hotel manager, some information about Prague during my stay, the in-room dining menu, and the spa services listing.
Behind the desk was several outlets – including one that would fit American plugs, which would come in incredibly handy if you forgot your adapter.
To the left of the dresser, facing the bed was the TV and an overstuffed chair. On the TV console, we found a small note, inviting us to the tree lighting ceremony that was to take place the next day. Next to that was a slip advertising a beer that was exclusively brewed for the hotel (and only available on-site). Naturally, we had to try this before we left.
Within the TV console were stored the minibar, the safe, and, within a drawer, the hairdryer (oddly).
On the table next to the overstuffed chair, I found a plate of macarons and the Luxury Collection book, Room with a View, which boasts all of their properties globally. I posted this photograph on Instagram and the Luxury Collection account left me a message letting me know the book was mine to keep. (And in case you were wondering, the macarons were fantastic).
The bathroom was accessed via the entryway, separated by two French doors with frosted window panes.
To my immediate right was hooks with two bathrobes and towels on a rack. Bonus: the towel rack was heated!
The sink was located next to the towels, which was neatly set up with face towels, toiletries, and glasses. attached to the wall was a magnified mirror.
The one unusual thing I noticed was that the only electric outlet in the bathroom was for razors – and none for the hair dryer (since the shape of the plug was different from the wall socket, it wouldn’t have worked even if I’d tried). I ended up drying my hair by the desk, which was a bit odd, though in retrospect, it explained why there was a mirror on the desk.
The bathroom came with Elemis products – and I loved the shampoo and conditioner. In the covered cup came cotton swabs, cotton puffs, a shower cap, and a sewing kit.
Underneath the sink was a weighing scale, plus extra towels. The toilet was next to the sink, with the flush buttons installed on the marble ledge behind it.
The tub was on the left side of the bathroom, which also served as a shower. The shower had excellent water pressure, but it was a little bit too close to the end of the tub, and could have stood to have been extended a few inches out.
At the end of the tub was a handheld shower head, though I didn’t end up using it.
Though the bathroom was well designed, easily the best part about the bathroom was the heated bathroom floor tiles.
The entryway had one more set of doors, which led to the closet.
The closet held an umbrella, a shoehorn, and a shoe shine bag, for any shoes you’d like shined during your stay. The closet also had a
After the front desk associate showed us all the bells and whistles to our room, we settled in and thought about ordering room service. I flipped through the menu, which had some pretty good items
The room service menu for wine and liquor was one of the more extensive offerings I’d seen.
Since the property was so dog-friendly, we decided to check out the restaurant downstairs. It turned out it was so late the restaurant was closing, but they let us know the bar was open.
It ended up working out better for us since we were in a more casual mood.
The bar (located right next to the restaurant) was beautiful, with tall ceilings and gorgeous chandeliers. Upon walking in, I immediately noticed the painted ceilings, particularly the flaming heart in the middle, which is a symbol for Saint Augustine (how appropriate).
The bar was located on one end of the the restaurant, while the rest of the space was seating.
The bar was mostly empty when we walked in, but by the time we had ordered, the space was much busier.
We were both opted for sparkling water, which was the same brand as the complimentary bottle that they provide in-room. The server brought over some nuts and crackers for us to snack on while we waited for our food.
Brian ordered a hamburger, which came with a side of fries. He didn’t end up finishing it due to its size, but said it was good. I opted for the turkey sandwich, which came with fresh mozzarella cheese and tomato aioli. The plate was served with a salad, and I ordered a side of fries to go with it. I enjoyed my meal, but there was a bit too much tomato aioli on it, so I’d recommend getting this on the side.
The next morning, we started our day with breakfast at Augustine Restaurant, where they served breakfast.The restaurant was large and open, with several floor to ceiling window panels, so the space was flooded with sunlight.
The restaurant was divided into two areas, a front half and a back half, separated in the middle by the buffet. While the back area had a little more privacy, the front side had more natural light.
The platinum amenity breakfast included the buffet, which came with pastries, breads, meat and cheese, cereal and fruit.
With breakfast, they served Torresella prosseco, an Italian wine that goes for about $15 a bottle.
The pastries and bread was laid out in another table. Brian was a huge fan of the pastries and tried several. I had the pain au chocolate, which was tasty.
If you wanted anything outside of the continental breakfast offerings, you’d have to order a la carte. Most items on the menu would cost you between 7-10 USD.
I never felt like I needed to order from the menu, since the things I usually eat for breakfast were covered by the buffet, but Brian ordered eggs every morning and said they were fantastic. I am a little surprised that they don’t offer a full breakfast – including hot items – with the platinum amenity, especially considering that several Luxury Collection properties I’ve visited have had some of the most impressive breakfast spreads I’ve seen.
Every morning we came by, the staff was always excited to see us and our dog. They never failed to bring him out a bowl of water while we dined (though I’m sure he wished they brought him an order of chicken).
Speaking of drinks, I’d be remiss not to mention the beer that they have available at the hotel. They serve/sell a dark lager brewed by Pivovar Matuska. The original recipe came from the monks that used to live (and brew) this very beer on the property. While the brewing is no longer done on-site, they still serve up pints of the beer at the hotel. The St. Thomas beer is exclusively distributed to the Augustine, so you’ll have to buy it from the hotel if you’d like to take home a bottle or two (they have them bubble wrapped for you at the concierge).
While they no longer brew the beer on-site, the space where the monks brewed this ale is the Brewery Bar, though I believe this is reserved for events and is not open regularly.
The property has a spa and a gym, located in the basement (or level -1 on the elevator). While most spas at hotels seem to be fairly unused, I, on numerous occasions, saw people in their bathrobes and slippers walking towards the spa, so it seems to be popular among guests.
The pricing for the Spa was as expected for a hotel – around 100-200 USD for treatments.
Upon entering the area, the gym was located on the left side, while the Spa was located on the right.
The gym space was not particularly large, and had standard gym equipment – cardio machines, weights, and a space to stretch.
The one thing I loved about this hotel was how fantastic the staff was. Prior to my arrival, I emailed the concierge with some questions about getting a pet passport, and not only did I receive an immediate, warm response, the concierge, Jakub, even asked what kind of dog I was traveling with since he too was a dog lover. He provided us with plenty of information about visiting Prague with our dog, plus provided restaurant recommendations, and made us an appointment at a nearby vet to issue the pet passport. Upon our arrival, he happened to be working and was thrilled to meet us and Marshall.
While we were there, there was a Christmas Tree lighting event, where they lit up the tree in their courtyard and invited guests to attend the party. We met a Sales Director, who we chatted up about the history of the property. She invited us to go on a tour of the hotel, where she showed us some areas that were generally not open to the public (unless escorted by hotel staff), like the chapel and the courtyard right outside it.
The hotel is located about 10-15 minutes walking distance from Old Town, which will be one of the main spots you’ll hit as a tourist.
The best way to get there is to walk on another tourist spot – the Charles Bridge, which is a pedestrian-only walkway that crosses the Vltava river.
The famed Prague Castle is about a 10-15 minute walk from the property. You can actually see the castle from some rooms at the hotel.
And of course – most importantly, food. There is also plenty of restaurants within a 5-10 minute walk from the hotel, which should come as no surprise given the proximity to several tourist sites. You’ll find a range of food, from cheap eats to upscale dining right around the hotel.
I had an amazing stay at the Augustine! The property was gorgeous, the staff was incredibly warm and welcoming, and there were days when I wanted to just stay in the hotel instead of heading out. That’s a true sign of a great hotel stay! Would definitely recommend this property to anyone visiting Prague.
Check In: 10/10 – Staff was very polite and upbeat, walked us to our room to walk us through the room
Elite Recognition: 9/10 – Upgraded to the next room type, received standard SPG Platinum benefits
Room: 10/10 – The room was unique and well-designed (aesthetically and layout-wise). And my favorite – heated bathroom tiles!
In-Room Technology & Entertainment: 10/10 – Large TV, outlets by the bed (bonus point for one outlet for American plugs) plus the standard free wifi. Did I mention heated bathroom tiles?
Staff: 10/10 – Staff was exceptional – went above and beyond to make our stay comfortable.
Location: 10/10 – Not smack in the middle of a tourist hotspot, but conveniently located near plenty of places.
On-Site Dining: 9/10 – Good selection of food, not terribly expensive either.
On-Site Amenities: 9/10 – The spa seemed very popular. Gym is available as well, though was less popular. Standard offerings expected of a Luxury Collection property.
Hospitality Services: 10/10– Fantastic concierge services – helped me make reservations and appointments needed for my trip, plus offered recommendations for restaurants in the area.
Hotel Appearance: 10/10 – Beautiful property – they’ve tastefully re-done the interiors of a historic old monastery.
Overall Rating: 96/100 (96%) ★★★★★