The Dancing House (Czech Republic)
The Dancing House is the nickname given to an office building in downtown Prague, Czech Republic. It was designed by Croatian-born Czech architect Vlado Milunic in co-operation with Canadian architect Frank Gehry on a vacant riverfront plot (where the previous building had been destroyed during the Bombing of Prague in 1945). The construction started in 1994 and was finished in 1996.
The very non-traditional design was controversial at the time. Czech president Vaclav Havel, who lived for decades next to the site, had supported it, hoping that the building would become a center of cultural activity. Originally named Fred and Ginger (after Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - the house vaguely resembles a pair of dancers) the house stands out among the Neo-Baroque, Neo-Gothic and Art Nouveau buildings for which Prague is famous.
On the roof is a French restaurant with magnificent views of the city. The building's other tenants include several multinational firms. (The plans for a cultural center were not realized.) Because it is situated next to a very busy road it depends on forced air circulation, making the interior somewhat less pleasant for its occupants.