One of biggest land marks of Smíchov used to be the parish church of St. Philip and St. Jacob at Arbesovo Square. Originally it was a Romanesque building from the second half of the 12th century which was reconstructed in 1749. The forefront of the church was at that time adorned with baroque gable and niche with imbedded sculptures of the blessed Jesus Christ. The church had a belfry attached to its building. The last mass in this church was held on 12th October 1891 and the demolition works began 14 days after. The curacy was moved to the newly founded church of St. Wenceslas.

The new church was supposed to be built in the area of the cemetery at Malvazinky instead. This cemetery was established in 1876 on the place of the former vineyard by Arch. Anthony Barviti. A piece of land to the extent of 3.2 ha belonged to the farm estate from 17th century, which was owned by Tomas Malvazy. Actual burials started on 31st December 1876.

The foundation stone of this pseudo- Romanesque church was laid on 13th September 1894. The project plan was prepared by Adolf Duchoň. Some of the building material that was used came from the old demolished church. Also the baroque statue of the Messiah placed in the forefront and the baroque sculptures from Ferdinand Maxmilián Brokof in the arcades came from the demolished church. The neo-Romanesque church was consecrated by Bishop Ferdinand Kalousek on 28th May 1896.

The tall steeple in the forefront is a dominant feature of this church. It sustains three floors and it is built of bricks and stone the same way as the church. The steeple has large semicircular windows of Romanesque shape. Only the upper part of the first floor has round smaller windows. The roof has a tall and slim spire shape with little pinnacles on each corner. The top of the roof as well as the tops of all pinnacles are adorned with finial.