If tourists only visit one of the twelve Dutch provinces, chances are this will be North Holland as this is where Amsterdam is. Contrary to what you may think Amsterdam is not the capital of the province. It may be the largest city in the province, but Haarlem is the capital.
Today, the Belgian city of Antwerp has definitely taken the place as the leading diamond city, and this is also where diamond trade took shape in the early days. However, for quite some time Amsterdam was the heart of diamonds. It was there that the best stones were kept while the rest were shipped onwards […]
Amstel beer is part of Heineken and, no surprise, gets its name from the river Amstel in Amsterdam. Where Heineken beer is the same all over the world, Amstel is not! For this brand you find local variations, depending on the local market. Just in case you wonder why Amstel abroad may not taste the […]
Holland´s most exclusive, or at least most expensive, shopping street is the PC Hooftstraat in Amsterdam, with many luxury brands. It´s near the Museum Square, if you want to treat yourself to some good shopping after a morning of culture… The exclusive shopping street has its own website, where you can check out brands and […]
The sphere is unique in Holland’s most famous popstage/music venue in a former church in Amsterdam: small, intimate, warm. With the audience very close to the artists, this pop temple is popular for its unique cosy atmosphere, and not just with audiences: many great artists have performed here including Lady Gaga, Prince Rolling Stones, Guns […]
Recent years have seen a couple of colourful and trendy brands shape modern Dutch design for the common people. Pip studio and Blond Amsterdam have everything for the house: cups, home textiles, stationery – you name it. Both in their respective bright, cheerful and distinctive designs.
You may have noticed that all phone numbers in Amsterdam start with 020, in Rotterdam with 010, in Utrecht with 030 and so on. Despite the rise of the mobile phone numbers (that all start with 06), these area or city codes have survived. Among certain groups (mainly Ajax and Feyenoord football supporters) the animosity […]
A ‘kraker’ is a squatter, a person who illegally occupies a vacant house. ‘Kraken’ (verb) emerged during the 1960s at a time when, despite the constant shortage of housing, there was a multitude of empty houses and office buildings. ‘Kraken’ reached a peak at the end of the seventies and the beginning of the eighties, […]
The newly renovated Rijksmuseum contains Rembrandt’s most famous painting, the ‘Nachtwacht’ (Nightwatch), and is definitely worth a visit. But during your stay in Amsterdam don’t miss the house where Rembrandt lived, the ‘Rembrandthuis’. Small, less crowded than the ‘Rijks’, it gives a good impression of the living and working circumstances Rembrant enjoyed until bad finances […]
Some 150 years ago, water from the dunes appeared to be so clean and fresh that a private company built the first service pipe from the dunes into Amsterdam. Today, a large part of the capital’s tap water still originates from the dunes, where nature filters the (rain)water in a natural way. Can you imagine […]