No fool he, the Dalai Lama booked the serenely spacious Lazar Suite in the Mandarin Oriental (from $284) back in October. The hotel, housed in a fourteenth-century monastery in the sleepy Malastrana neighborhood, has a stellar house wine list—perfect for a jet-lagged crash course in Czech winemaking. Its Barego Bar is stocked with impressive labels like an Eastern European sparkling wine (called Sekt) from producer Tanzberg.
If you’re counting Koruna, settle for teenier quarters in the Hotel Josef (from $190)—the hippest boutique hotel in town. Book rooms 704 or 801 for impressive views of Prague Castle and the spires of Old Town Square.
Hotel Cloister Inn (from $134), close to the National Theater, is a modest but friendly place near the city’s best antique stores. Though the mattresses are thin, the staff is accommodating and the breakfast buffet is filled with fresh, local fare.