HOTEL IN PRAGUE CENTER
History of Hotel Betlem Club
The Betlem Club hotel Prague 1 stands in the place of a Gothic house dating from the 13th century and contains its original Gothic cellar, which has been well preserved. Reportedly, a rich burgher had this house built as a wedding gift for his daughter.
There had already been settlers in the Romansque period in the area the Bethlehem Square. In the 11th century St. Philip's and Martin's Church was founded in the space between the today's Bethlehem Chapel and the house at no. 9. The buildings opposite the chapel served as farm buildings of the church. In the place of the house at no. 9 there was probably a stable (the buildings were made of wood).
In the 14th century this part of Prague was called Red Venice due to the high number of brothels. Jan Milíč of Kroměříž (predecessor of John Huss) even had a house established here for old prostitutes. In 1450 the house was partly damaged by a fire. At the beginning of the 17th century the house, which, had been rebuilt several times by then, became under the ownership of Prokop Dvořecký of Olbramovice, one of the 27 unlucky noblemen executed in the Old Town Square in 1621. He is said to have buried a part of his property in the Gothic cellar before his death; however, it has never been found.
In the 18th and 19th centuries the house served as a shelter for poor mothers with children. At the beginning of the 20th century the Fuchs family lived in and operated a funeral service from the house. In 1948 the house was nationalized. In the period of socialist Czechoslovakia the house gradually deteriorated until in 1989 it became one of the most dilapidated houses in this part of Prague. After the fall of communism the house was returned to the Fuchs family. In 1991 the house was bought and repaired by the TOPGAS International Company.