Jama Michalika Cafe
The original colorful Art
Nouveau interior of the Jama Michalika
coffee shop in Krakow
at 45 Florianska street should suffice to attract
visitors. And its name reverberates in Polish history and
culture. The cafe has been in business since 1895, while its
present decor dates back to 1908. The place was immortalized by
patrons who frequented it at the turn of the 20th century. The
greatest artists, actors and men of letters of the period known
as ‘Mloda Polska’ or Young Poland used to gather here for a talk
and amusement over a cup of coffee or a glass of absinthe. Their
caricatures still adorn the walls. Here they also created the
legendary cabaret, “Zielony balonik” (Little Green Balloon) in
1905: born as sheer fun for their originators it became the
paragon of all literary cabarets in this country. The
picturesque hideout seems to keep the time frozen since the days
when the 20th century was young and innocent. And for most of
Polish intelligentsia Krakow’s Jama Michalika cafe remains a
sanctuary of Bohemian esprit.
Krakow’s central Grand Square (Rynek Glowny), the
largest plaza of medieval Europe and one of the world’s finest
with its spectacular landmarks, has remained the hub of the city
since the 13th century.
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