SLOVAKIA

Bratislava: Bizarre Accomodations at the Hotel Spirit

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Describing the Hotel Spirit as “unusual” or “off the beaten path” falls far short of accurately detailing the peculiarities of this place. Located about a 20 minute walk from the city center, the brightly colored, abstract-shaped building dramatically stands out in an otherwise unassuming neighborhood. The interior looks like an art project gone awry, with jagged shapes of color covering the carpets, walls and ceilings. In addition to offering truly unique accommodations, the Hotel Spirit also offers a range of equally anomalous amenities. The front desk sells “life supplies,” which seem to be just vitamins and various supplements, although they will come with promises of being much, much more; there is a “fitness box,” which is an exercise room unused closet with some well worn workout equipment; and a  “relaxation pyramid,” which is a space in the attic available for meditation.

However, the most interesting feature must be the “happy room,” which is described by the hotel as “rooms with surprise (for the occasional organization of meetings for pleasure, energy, beauty and love),” but seem not to be too different from any other room in the hotel.

Vanèurova 1
831 01 Bratislava, Slovakia

Slavakia: Curious Statues of Bratislava

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Hidden throughout the streets of the Old Town are four unique, life-sized bronze statues, serving to add a bit more character to the city’s historic center. You’re likely to come across them on your own without searching if you are spending any time in the Old Town.

Rubberneck (Cumil)-Peeking out of an open manhole on the street, this statue has literally lost his head a few times due to careless drivers. In efforts to keep Cumil safe, a sign now stands by his location to warn drivers of his presence. Located at the corner of Panská and Rybárska bránai.

Schöne Naci-Said to be a tribute to Ignác Lamár, a former resident of the city best known for wandering the streets dressed in a suit and top hat and engaging all those he came across. The statue continues to bid greetings to passerbys with a wave of his top hat. Located on Rybárska brána.

Paparazzi-Found peering around the corner with his camera aimed at the entry to the appropriately named Paparazzi restaurant and cocktail bar. Located at the corner of Laurinská and Radničná.

Napoleon’s Soldier-A French army soldier, who bares a striking resemblance to Napoleon himself, leans over a bench in the city center. Napoleon and his troops came to the city in 1805 to sign the Treaty of Pressburg, as Bratislava was then known,  between Austria and France following Napoleon’s victories at Ulm and Austerlitz. They returned again in 1809 when his troops besieged the city. Located in Hlavné námestie (main square).

95 Meters Above Bratislava: UFO Restaurant & Bar

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Located in the world’s seventh largest suspension bridge, formerly known as the bridge of the Slovak National Uprising, UFO Restaurant and Bar opened in 2005 as a more modern and stylish reincarnation of the former Communist-style restaurant Bystrica that formerly occupied the space. The open-air observation deck sits 95 meters above ground level with the restaurant slightly below at 85 meters. The restaurant offers a mix of seasonal Mediterranean and Asian fusion cuisine and the bar supplies cocktails that could easily compete with the hippest bars around the world. Highlights include Helda’s Saffran Sherbert (becherovka, homemade saffran ice cream, bollinger champagne) and the Rose Negroni (beefeater gin, carpano antica formula vermouth, campari and rose water foam). Despite perceptions after a few drinks…the UFO does NOT rotate or otherwise move in any way.

The seating is limited (80 in the restaurant and 60 in the bar) so plan accordingly if the UFO is a not-to-be-missed on your list.

Atop the Nový Most (New Bridge)

€6,50/196Sk….free with dinner reservation