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Amsterdam is well-known as a great place for visitors, but what’s it like to live here? We asked our team to tell us about some of their favourite local places.
Amsterdam is renowned for its canal network, a rich and varied history and a vibrant cultural scene. There’s always something to do, from just sitting in your favourite local café and watching the world go by to visiting a world-class museum. And every part of the city has its own unique atmosphere and popular hangouts that only locals know about. So, to give you an insight into some of the lesser-known attractions of the city, we asked our colleagues to describe their favourite things to do in Amsterdam. And this is what they suggested.
Art and culture
It seems that every cultural tourist who comes to Amsterdam heads straight for the area known as Museumplein. This is where you’ll find the Rijksmuseum, the Van Gogh Museum, the Stedelijk Museum and The Royal Concertgebouw. It’s a vibrant area, with lots of things to see and do all year round, from paddling in the summer, to ice skating in winter. But the city has plenty more to offer art lovers.
The old narrow streets of the Jordaan, are full of independent art galleries and antique shops, as well as courtyard gardens, bars and restaurants. And close by, the artificial islands of Prinseneiland and Realeneiland are home to a number of artist studios.
In Vondelpark, you’ll find the ‘Figure découpée l’Oiseau’ (‘The Bird’) – an original Picasso sculpture donated to the city by the artist himself. Nearby, the OT301 cultural centre is a squat that’s been turned into an art space full of street art. It has its own no-waste restaurant, too.
Travel west to Zaandam and you’ll find the Hembrugterrein, an area full of museums, art venues and restaurants. At the heart of it is Het HEM, a cultural complex with a variety of exhibition spaces along with a library, hi-fi record bar, café and restaurant.
The movies in style
If you want somewhere different to watch a movie, then Theatre Tuschinski in central Amsterdam is the place. The interior is an art deco masterpiece dating back to 1921, so if you’re not enjoying the movie, you can admire the building!
If you want something more modern, go to the EYE building on the north bank of the canal opposite the Centraal Station. As well as a cinema, it’s home to a film museum, a huge film library and a restaurant bar with a terrace overlooking the water. Or in the Oud-West neighbourhood, De Hallen is an old warehouse that’s now home to a cinema, independent stores and a boutique hotel.
Face the music
From major concert halls to small, intimate bars, the live music scene in Amsterdam is thriving. Paradiso is a club based in an old church that’s hosted gigs by the Rolling Stones and the Sex Pistols in the past and still welcomes a range of new international talent today. And at De School’s basement club, you’ll find a diverse range of live acts.
The Concertgebouw is well-known for hosting everyone from world-class orchestras to global pop superstars. While the Roode Bioscoop is a 100-year-old former cinema where you can hear the latest in acoustic music.
At Miele X we’re very proud to call Amsterdam our home. As you can see, whatever you’re interested in, Amsterdam has it covered. But we’ve only scratched the surface here and you’re sure to find your own favourite places when you come to the city.
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