The guests of our Prague food tours often ask us about souvenirs they should get from Prague. We think you have to be smart when it comes to buying souvenirs anywhere: it has to be something relatively small, something that will survive the journey in your luggage unharmed, and something that has a story behind it you can later tell your friends when you show off what you brought home. Botas 66 sneakers (or trainers for those reading this in the UK) meet all these criteria.
Originally one of the few sneakers available under the Communist rule, the Botas became infamous with their “Classic" model that dates back to the 1966. Think Adidas Samba, but Czech. After the end of Communism, the company struggled to make it in the competition of much bigger, global brands entering the market, but than two young Czech designers, Jan Kloss and Jakub Korous, won many awards with their school project that aimed to resurrect the brand. Botas noticed and put the designs into production as a new “Botas 66” lifestyle line. Now they are a local hipster favorite. And now you can have them, too.
After a long hiatus, the Botas 66 line now has its own shop, actually owned and managed by the young designer duo themselves. The shop is located right underneath the TV Tower near some great places worth visiting, including the Jiriho z Podebrad farmers’ market or The Tavern pub with great burgers. The shop is actually quite small and simple but has all the new seasonal models in stock and some nice designer accessories on top of it. The lovely staff will definitely help and who knows? You may even end up on their Facebook profile. If you want a super-cool souvenir that no-one else will have where you live, make sure you visit this little shop with a big heart.
Where is it? Krizkovskeho 18 in the Zizkov district, right under the infamous TV Tower.
When to come: They open at 2pm during the weekdays and stay open until 8pm. On Saturdays, they are open from 10am to 4pm. We would always come when they roll out their new seasonal models.
What to buy: You’re joking, right? Sneakers, of course. For the full experience, get something in the Czech national colors of white, red and blue. But hey, you do what you want to do, ok?
What else should you buy? Botas 66 cooperates with other young Czech designers on accompanying brand products, including the lovely Botas 66-branded notebooks by the Papelote stationery producers. Their hack on the classic Jiri Pelcl-designed Bohemia White mug is a great souvenir, too.
What to beware of: Nothing, really. Maybe buying too many models.
Instagram-worthiness: Very high. The shop is lined with the bright yellow Botas shoe boxes that will look great on an Instagram when paired with some of their crazier models.
(Photos by Martin of Everbay)