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Bedřich Smetana's Gardens parks


Dr. Pohoreckého
Františkovy Lázně
351 01



Bedřich Smetana Gardens are located by the Božena Němcová Theatre.  This central municipal park, was formerly known as "Morgenzeile" and its establishment is dated to the 1860s. It was created on the properties continuing to the east from the housing block of spa buildings. In 1866, Antonín Soukup, along with Metternich’s gardener, Stadler, adapted the path hemmed by linden (Tilia) trees - hence the name Morgenzeile, the Morning Alley - and thus laid the foundations for further park adjustments. Historical plans show that first, a narrow strip continuing in what is today Dr Pohorecký Street was established, divided into several separate “gardens” belonging to the adjacent hotels. The park designs continued from them, and their main roads stemmed from two transverse streets - Poštovní and Husova. In 1868, in the north-west corner of the area, the spa theatre was constructed, and the park was established approximately up to its midpoint. When the Villa Imperial was built in 1878, a garden was created in its direct proximity, which was then decently attached to the surrounding park, which significantly extended the municipal greenery. The later phases of the developments of the park in these areas were directed towards the pavilion of the Salty Spring, where in 1905, a monument to the Austrian Empress Elisabeth, known as Sissi, was unveiled. This monument was adorned by an extensive parterre of flowers. Sadly, in 1925, the monument was removed as a symbol of the Hapsburg rule, and the area was compositionally connected to the parterre located by the Imperial Spa.

”Morning Park” gained a distinct architectural dominant in the form of the Art Nouveau monument to author Johann Wolfgang Goethe created by prominent sculptor Karl Josef Wilfert, jr. Its surroundings were completed by a formally designed garden adjustment composed of the dendrologically-interesting background of the monument and of the line of planted lindens hemming the flower parterre. Benches of an interesting shape served for rest.

The 2022 revitalization modifications are based on the original plan of the work. To the monument has been added a music feature.  The music consists of a selection of works by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe's contemporaries, such as Beethoven and Chopin.

The new dominant park road is the connection between Poštovní Street and 5. května Street. It features interesting basalt paving in combination with clay. Basalt is the typical mineral for this region with vulcanic past. The central motif is an illuminated water feature located in the Sternberg Star. The whole composition recalls J. W. Goethe's research activities with Count Kašpar Šternberk, who was elected president of the Society for the Establishment of the Czech Patriotic Museum in 1818. The authors of the project have developed the memory of J.W. Goethe in various places in the park, where Goethe's famous quotes are engraved or written for example on a stone bird drinker, a column of a water feature or a stone plaque hanging from a tree. Visitors can thus search for these quotations in a targeted way around the park.

The project for the revitalisation of the Bedřich Smetana Gardens received a financial subsidy from the State Environmental Fund in the amount of CZK 25.3 million. 114 trees, 45 solitary shrubs, 542 m2 of hedges, 272 m2 of ground cover plants, 135 m2 of perennial plantings and 22,705 bulbs were planted. The subsidy programme included felling of dry and unviable old trees, health pruning of other trees in selected locations. All decisions were based on a professional dendrological survey, which served as a binding basis for the preparation of the project documentation.