Concierge’s Choice September: Meet The Dylan’s Culinary Partner De Kaaskamer

With our unbeatable location on the prominent Keizersgracht, surrounded by the charm of the 9 Straatjes, The Dylan lives and breathes the Amsterdam spirit. That’s why we collaborate with local powerhouses to bring you the most authentic experience during your stay.

For this month’s Concierge’s Choice, we are introducing you to one of our culinary partners: De Kaaskamer. De Kaaskamer and The Dylan Amsterdam are practically neighbours and we use this proximity to bring guests the ultimate in culinary craft and delight.

Decades of an Unbeatable Cheese Experience

The Netherlands is known for its cheese. But as Loek de Loor, the founder of De Kaaskamer, knew, not all cheeses are created equal. He founded De Kaaskamer almost 30 years ago with the purpose of curating and selling cheese delicacies with the finest flavors. With this in mind, he started visiting small farms across Holland, Belgium and France, to scope out the best the world of cheese had to offer. Nowadays his daughter Sophie and her husband Joost run the store with the same care and attention to quality.

De Kaaskamer are experts in cheeses and everything that goes along with that. More than 400 cheeses from around Europe are on offer in their central Amsterdam location, including local specialties, like over 100 different types of Gouda.

The Road to the Best Cheeses

“We still drive daily through the Netherlands, Belgium and France to discover and select our favorite cheeses,” describes Joost Hammann, co-owner of De Kaaskamer. “Amsterdam covers a critical audience in terms of quality and taste. As a small store with lots of competition, we want to make a difference in assortment, heritage, quality and taste.”

Those unfamiliar with the cheese market might assume it ends there. But, after the cheese is selected and purchased, it still has to age. “This is called affinage,” explains Joost. “It’s our job to age the cheese as perfectly as possible, so when it is served on your cheese platter, the flavor and structure will be at their absolute best.”

Culinary Class at The Dylan

The fromagers from The Dylan Hotel, Jasper van Amerongen at Vinkeles and Jouke Veenstra at OCCO, work together with the team at De Kaaskamer to select the most suitable cheeses for the menu and the season. Considering that we are neighbours, our fromagers visit De Kaaskamer in person to do this on a daily basis. On occasion, we get together to learn more about the current offerings and receive training and insights from De Kaaskamer, in order to learn more about their products and presentation possibilities.

“It’s a close partnership,” says Joost, “And that’s important when you work with a product as complex as cheese.”

You can sample De Kaaskamer’s offerings during your next meal at The Dylan. Make it a full spread by adding on savory meats and luxury nut mixes, also available to purchase from the De Kaaskamer shop at Runstraat 7.

 

 

Jouke’s Choice: Cheese

It is time for ‘’cheese’’ in this new issue of The Dylan Mag. And the honor is mine to tell you about it.

My name is Jouke. I have been working at Restaurant Vinkeles and Bar Brasserie OCCO since 2011 and since a couple of years I am the one who is responsible for all the different kinds of cheeses we serve in our Restaurant and Brasserie. I took this responsibility just because I am crazy about cheese. You can wake me up for every kind of cheese actually.

Cheese is a beautiful product, available in different kind of milks and countless varieties: fresh cheeses, young and old cheeses, blue cheese, with an ashy layer, creamy and soft, sharpness, you name it. Even the craziest cheese you can imagen is being made in the most fantastic way. The most familiar milks which cheese is being made from are of the cow, the goat and the sheep. But there are also examples of the ones from the buffalo, horses, donkeys, camels, reindeers and yak milk.

Cheeses are being made all over the world. Why do we limit us in Vinkeles to only Dutch cheeses? The answer is simple; everywhere across the world you can consume French or Italian cheeses. Dutch cheese, except for a few Gouda’s or Edammers, aren’t available in other countries. With great pleasure we want to share the knowledge about our pearls of the Dutch cheeses, something we are proud of.

For example think about the goat cheeses of Hanneke Kuppens from Zevenhuizen. She is involved from the beginning until the end and that is something you taste. We will always serve a piece from Hanneke’s creations. Just as the Remeker cheeses of Jan Dirk van de Voort from Lunteren. This farm produces on a biodynamic way since 2004 and I think this is the way that the most beautiful, hard cheeses of our country are made.

The last year I have become familiar with the cheeses of farmhouse the Oudwijker in Lopikerkapel. They make a lot of cheeses from among cow- and buffalo milk. All the cheeses are remarkable, piece by piece. Come and enjoy of the Colosso or the Fiore! These names doesn’t sound Dutch, because they learned the technique in Italy. Although they make it on their Utrechtse farm and on their own way.

There are many more and we like to get inspired. We work closely together with the Kaaskamer, a cheese store on the corner next to the hotel. The two owners are really enthusiastic who will let me taste all new cheeses. This in combination with the different seasons gives us a nice regularly change on our plateau.

The cheeses are presented on two large shelves in the size of the table. The wow-effect that the guest have when I show them our plateau is such a great feeling. Guests don’t have to be modest, they can choose as much as they want and we’ll come back with their favorite cheese just to enjoy one last piece. It’s served on marble of different sizes. Also the confiture and types of bread are served on these marble plates. The table is full and that looks so good, for a perfect photo moment.

With great pleasure I welcome you in Restaurant Vinkeles and I hope you will agree that a piece of cheese is a must after the main course…

 

 

Concierge’s Choice August: Meet The Dylan’s Culinary Partner Stooker Specialty Coffee

With our unbeatable location on the prominent Keizersgracht, surrounded by the charm of the 9 Straatjes, The Dylan Amsterdam lives and breathes the Amsterdam spirit. That’s why we collaborate with local powerhouses to bring you the most authentic experience during your stay.

For this month’s Concierge’s Choice, we are introducing you to one of our culinary partners: Stooker Specialty Coffee. Our collaboration runs deep: You can encounter Stooker at several touch points at The Dylan. Read on below to discover what makes our collaborateurs an Amsterdam hotspot and why our cooperation is so unique.

 

Introducing: Stooker Specialty Coffee

Sweet, young, collaborative: This is the specialty coffee scene in Amsterdam. And no one captures the experience better than Stooker. The name comes from a building on Kastanjeplein, in which alcoholic beverages used to be stoked and where the Stooker HQ now sits. The same attention to craft and the desire to bring people together still remains.

Founded by coffee lovers and entrepreneurs Onno van Zanten and Florian Hessel, Stooker roasts and brews a wide selection of specialty coffees. They help entrepreneurs to serve specialty coffee and support them throughout the entire process, crossing all T’s and dotting all I’s: paying farmers proper prices, supplying cafe partners with consistent machines, training all baristas in their SCA certified academy and so much more.

“Everything we do is custom,” says Florian Hessel, “but it’s always with the same goal: To make sure the served cup of coffee is as good as it can possibly be.”

 

The best cup of coffee at The Dylan Hotel Amsterdam

Florian and Onno work with our Director of Operations Roel Ruijs and our Food & Beverage Manager Sam Hilkens to uphold that promise at Bar Brasserie OCCO and Restaurant Vinkeles, both located in The Dylan hotel.

“The coffee served at OCCO and Vinkeles at the moment is a single origin Brazilian coffee from the Minas Gerais region,” explains Florian. “We picked this one together with Roel and Sam, because it has loads of chocolate flavors and a full body. It’s a feel good coffee that works great with milk and is super consistent for the baristas to brew.”

This special Stooker brew is the perfect companion to the traditional Dutch custom of having a cookie alongside a coffee. And when visiting OCCO, this tradition is extra special: The cookie that is served with an espresso or cappuccino will elevate your coffee experience to the next level. “Sip on that cup, take a bite of the cookie and focus on the flavors for a second,” suggests Florian.” You’ll be pleasantly surprised!”

Quality coffee in a cosy Amsterdam hotspot

Though simple for some, coffee can also be a complex and highly versatile product. And that is what excites the teams at Stooker as well as at The Dylan. Ever the innovators, Florian and Onno believe that there is still lots to discover and to show and tell the guests at OCCO and Vinkeles.

“It’s a treat to be able to work together with people like Roel and Executive Chef Dennis Kuipers, who understand the diversity of the flavors that can be found in coffee and who are not afraid to try out different things,” enthuses Florian. “The whole hotel breathes quality, and that’s why we’re very proud to be a partner of The Dylan.”

Sample a delicious cup of Stooker Specialty Coffee during your breakfast, afternoon break or as an after-dinner treat while staying at The Dylan or dining at OCCO or Vinkeles. And visit their location at Kastanjeplein 2 in Amsterdam’s east end to pick up a bag of beans.



Portrait by Roel Ruijs.
Images of the roasters by Onno van Zanten.
Image of the Stooker Academy/HQ by Marten van Wijk.

 

 

Concierge’s Choice July: The Great Outdoors

Restaurateurs are sweeping their terraces, the parks have turned into a sea of green. Time to pack a picnic, dig out your swimsuit and soak up the warmth and joys of the great outdoors. In Amsterdam, that means lounging in the soft grass of a city park, going for a swim in the Amstel or people-watching on one of the countless terraces. See our July recommendations for all these activities below.

City parks for a (distanced) picnic
Various locations

Amsterdam is one of the greenest cities in Europe, thanks to its large variety of parks and grounds. No matter where in the city you currently find yourself, there’s a luscious speck of green nearby. Take a trip to the west and discover the beautiful Rembrandt Park, with its number of ponds, playgrounds and picnic spots, as well as De Uylenburg, Amsterdam’s oldest petting zoo. If you’re exploring the east, why not take a peek at the Oosterpark and its impressive sculpture garden and charming pavilion.

De Hortus Botanical Garden
Plantage Middenlaan 2a

For a more curated nature experience, we recommend visiting the De Hortus botanical garden near Amsterdam city centre. Currently they are offering an interesting exhibition titled ‘Brilliant Plants’, which examines how exactly plants eat, sleep, communicate and reproduce. You can also stroll through the greenhouses, including one filled with hundreds of tropical butterflies. Be sure to book your visiting time online in advance.

ARTIS Zoo
Plantage Kerklaan 38-40

Lions, tigers, bears – but also giraffes, ostriches, zebras and countless botanic treasures are waiting for you at the ARTIS Royal Zoo in Amsterdam’s centre. The planet’s natural diversity is represented here, from the forest to the savannah, from the aquarium to the planetarium. Whatever lifeform you’re curious about, you can book a timeframe online in advance and look forward to a colourful day of monkeying around.

Charming outdoor terraces
Various locations

For a different kind of zoo, we recommend sitting on one of the many gorgeous outdoor terraces in Amsterdam and doing some people-watching. Observe a parade of interesting passersby from the Brouwerij Troost in Westerpark or the terrace of cafe Brandstof in the Jordaan neighborhood. For a quiet drink, visit Bar Brasserie OCCO at The Dylan, which has a private secluded inner garden for ultimate relaxation after a long day of sightseeing.

Go for a swim

Various locations

Dip your toes or take a full dive into the cooling waterways of Amsterdam. If you’re keen on going for a swim in the city this July, your options are practically endless. Though you could head to the beach in Zandvoort, we recommend getting your hair wet like a true Amsterdammer: in the ponds. There are many spots along the Amstel, like at the Martin Luther King Park, where you can jump from the pier and splash around in the mighty river. Or visit the popular man-made beach area in Sloterplas in Amsterdam’s Nieuw West for a tropical time without leaving the city.

 

 

Concierge’s Choice June: Welcome to Summer

First and foremost, we’d like to extend a warm welcome back to all of our guests and readers of The Dylan Mag. It has been a challenging three months, however we’re happy to be able to once again open our doors and do what we do best: Provide you with an unforgettable stay in the beautiful heart of Amsterdam. Summer is an exciting time here and, although some safety measures are still in place, we have a great list of what to do to get the most out of June in the Dutch capital.

Cinemas in Amsterdam
Various locations

After nearly three months of watching Netflix, how refreshing it is to be able to go out to see a movie! Amsterdam is no stranger to the classic cinema. Think plush red seats, big screens and buttery popcorn. Head to The Movies on Haarlemmerdijk to watch the latest blockbusters as well as independent productions. Or try the student-run Kriterion in the east to see cult films or movies from up-and-comers. For that true old Hollywood feeling, go to Tuschinski in the centre and marvel at the glamorous art nouveau decorations. Tickets for all cinemas must be purchased online in advance.

Shopping in De 9 Straatjes
Amsterdam Canal Belt

Nothing beats strolling along the canals on a sunny afternoon and doing a bit of shopping. The famous 9 Streets – De 9 Straatjes – offer this idyllic experience. Go antiquing in one of the many vintage shops or peruse the latest fashions from local and international designers. Pick up a collection of art prints in one of the galleries or a coffee table book as a gift. Charming and compact, these intersecting streets house the crème de la crème of Amsterdam’s shopping scene – and staying at The Dylan puts you right in the heart of it, so book your room today.

Bar Brasserie OCCO
Keizersgracht 384

There’s only one way to satisfy post-shopping fatigue and it’s with an exquisite lunch or afternoon coffee at Bar Brasserie OCCO. Located in The Dylan and open all day, OCCO is where quality, service and craftsmanship meet to bring you dazzling refreshments, like bespoke cocktails and the one-of-a-kind High Wine service, as well as a delectable menu made up of classic brasserie dishes. Feast on duck breast with king oyster mushrooms or steak tartare while planning which shops to hit next. You can reserve a table here.

Vondelpark
Amsterdam-Zuid
Although it’s always one of the most popular spots in Amsterdam, these days the Vondelpark is the subject of additional appreciation. The park was first opened to the public in 1865 as a horseback riding and strolling park called Nieuwe Park. Renamed after the Dutch poet Joost van den Vondel in 1877, Vondelpark comprises a mix of flora, including Dutch red chestnuts, catalpas and a variety of birch trees. Home to all sorts of birds, the park is probably best known for the flock of wild parakeets that can sometimes be spotted in the trees. Stroll or cycle down the tree-lined lanes, discover the handful of sculptures and enjoy the splendour of this grand and green gem of Amsterdam.

 

 

Front Courtyard of Hotel The Dylan Amsterdam

Concierge’s Choice April: Explore Amsterdam Virtually

During times like these, when the whole world is unsettled and our usual routines restricted, it’s easy to focus too much on the negative. You might have had a trip planned to Amsterdam, which you now have to postpone for the time being. But don’t despair! We have decided that for this month’s Concierge’s Choice, we will recommend virtual destinations and must-sees in Amsterdam for you to enjoy at home. Let your mind and soul travel with our selection of cultural tips below – and be sure to connect with The Dylan online, where we continue to be available for you!

Rijksmuseum Masterpieces Up Close
Visit the website

Dazzling, masterful and slightly eerie, enter the virtual Rijksmuseum for an up-close-and-personal tour of the paintings displayed in the museum’s popular Gallery of Honour. Rendered in the highest quality and complete with audio and informational details, enjoy a rare frontrow and tranquil viewing of masterpieces such as Rembrandt’s The Nightwatch and Asselijn’s The Threatened Swan. While away the hours moving from painting to painting, and fully enjoy one of Amsterdam’s most revered cultural offerings.

Virtual Van Gogh Museum
Visit the website

Pay a visit to one of Amsterdam’s most brilliant artists at his virtual home: Go online to the Van Gogh Museum and discover the fantastic selection of digital collections, fun quizzes and lesson plans for children. Print and colour in Van Gogh’s famous sunflowers, unravel the hidden layers in his paintings on the Van Gogh app and take a ‘private’ virtual tour through the entire museum. To further pass the time, look up one of the many films that were inspired by his enduring art.

Take a 360 Tour through Amsterdam
Google Street View and 360 Stories

Spring is the time to take leisurely strolls through Amsterdam’s quaint streets and over the quintessential canals. Luckily you can still do so during the lockdown: Visit famous Amsterdam attractions like the Anne Frank House through Google Street View. Continue your virtual walk with 360 Stories, where you can transport yourself to Museumplein, Dam Square, Vondelpark and many more of Amsterdam’s best places.

Keukenhof Virtually Open
Visit the website

Closed to visitors until the 2021 season, the Keukenhof flower garden still wants to share the full glory of its blooming flower arrangements and displays with you online. Under the title Keukenhof Virtually Open (#keukenhofvirtuallyopen on social media), you can watch videos of gardeners showcasing the best parts of Keukenhof and introducing rare flower varieties. A little colour is exactly what’s needed right now.

King’s Day

Arguably the most anticipated event on the Dutch calendar, King Willem-Alexander’s birthday on April 27 is the biggest celebration in Amsterdam and all of the Netherlands. Usually, revellers take to the streets or float down the canals on boats, a bright sea of orange shirts and red, white and blue flags waving happily in the air. Although this year we will be celebrating indoors, it doesn’t mean we can’t eat, drink and be merry until the wee hours of the morning.

 

 

Concierge’s Choice March: Stepping into Spring

When the days slowly get longer and the songbirds start chirping their morning melodies, then you know that Spring is waiting at the door. And there is nothing quite like Spring in Amsterdam. Watch as the city warms up and blossoms, much like the famous Dutch tulips and other eye-catching flora that are popping up everywhere this season. Below are our picks for you to enjoy a marvelous March.

Opening of Keukenhof
Stationsweg 166A, 2161 AM Lisse
It’s the moment we have all been waiting for: On March 21, the Keukenhof flower garden is opening its doors once again. Known as the ‘Garden of Europe’, Keukenhof provides the quintessential Dutch experience for international visitors, spanning 32 hectares and over 7 million flower bulbs planted here every year. Marvel at the countless colourful tulip varieties, enjoy the imaginative flower arrangements and let the stunning tulip fields serve as the backdrop for that perfect Insta-pic.

Amsterdam Coffee Festival
Westergasfabriek, Pazzanistraat 33
Looking for a different kind of buzz? Then visit the Westergasfabriek from March 13 to 15 for the Amsterdam Coffee Festival. At this yearly event, you can not only learn how different beans are roasted or sample your way to the perfect espresso – you can also root for your favourite barista during the Dutch Barista Championships.

Open Torendag
Various locations
Do you ever look up at a tall building and wonder what the view must be like from up there? With the Open Torendag – Open Tower Day – on March 21, you will have the opportunity to peer over Amsterdam from a variety of impressive perches. Towers from the previous years included the Beurs van Berlage, the Oudekerk tower, as well as many contemporary buildings and hotels. What’s lovelier than exploring Amsterdam architecture on a Spring afternoon?

Free Lunch Concerts at the Concertgebouw
Concertgebouwplein 10
In a bustling place like Amsterdam’s museum quarter, it can be difficult to find a peaceful retreat for an hour or two. If you’re in need of a refresher, try the free lunchtime concerts at the Concertgebouw every Wednesday in the month of March (and beyond). Watch and listen as musicians rehearse for upcoming performances in the Recital Hall. Although it’s free, you still need to get a ticket to attend. The box office opens at 11.30 am and the concert begins an hour later.

HISWA Boat Show at Amsterdam RAI
Europaplein 24
Find literally anything that might float your boat at the HISWA Amsterdam Boat Show, taking place at the RAI convention centre in the south of Amsterdam from March 11 – 15. Get a headstart on your aquatic adventures by taking the whole family to survey the wide selection of sloop-, speed- and sailboats. Dive headfirst into the HISWA Sport Xperience, where you can test a variety of watersports such as Stand Up-paddle-boarding or wi4ndsurfing. End the day by shopping for any new parts or water accessories you might need – maybe even a new vessel!

Image: Janus van den Eijnden

 

 

Entrance of The Dylan Amsterdam with marble floor

Concierge’s Choice: A Fabulous February

Every year we face the same question: How to combat the lull of February? With the New Year’s excitement gone and Spring still a couple of months away, it can be a slow and challenging month. Fortunately, Amsterdam’s cultural calendar is always teeming with thought-provoking exhibitions, vitalising concerts and special ways to discover the city. As a bonus, all of our February recommendations below double as fabulous, out-of-the-box date ideas for Valentine’s Day. Be sure to mark your calendars accordingly to give your loved one an experience they will treasure forever.

“Chagall, Picasso, Mondrian and others” at the Stedelijk Museum
Museumplein 10
Every new year begins with the questioning of identity. Who am I? What do I stand for? In that spirit, the exhibition “Chagall, Picasso, Mondrian and others: Migrants in Paris” at the Stedelijk Museum for contemporary art, tells the story of otherness and finding one’s way. The exhibition curates more than 50 collection pieces by famous artists who moved to Paris at the beginning of the 20th century in order to take the art world by storm. Follow master artists like Picasso, Rivera, Chagall and Kandinsky on their journey from relative anonymity to becoming the toast of the Parisian artworld. If you’re looking for personal or professional inspiration this year, then this exhibition cannot be missed.

Valentine Classics at the Movies at the Concertgebouw
Concertgebouwplein 10
If you are tired of being accused of less than stellar date ideas, why don’t you take your sweetheart to the “Valentine Classics at the Movies” concert at the Concertgebouw? On Friday February 14, let Harry Piekema and the WDR Funkhausorchester transport you musically to the set of your very own romantic comedy. Enjoy classics by Puccini, Beethoven, and Bizet in the very building where Mahler and Strauss conducted their own compositions. A classical Valentine’s Day concert is the absolute height of romance, so book your tickets now.

Outside Fashion at Huis Marseille
Keizersgracht 401
Treat your eyes and mind to something beautiful at Huis Marseille. For the first time in history, archive material from Palais Galliera, the fashion museum of Paris, is being presented to the public in the exhibition “Outside Fashion”, in order to illustrate how much fashion photography has changed from 1900 to 1969. Feast your eyes upon never seen before photographs and magazine excerpts featuring stylish women and classic beauties in smart clothing. It’s an absolute must-see for fashion and photography lovers.

What a Genderful World at the Tropenmuseum
Linnaeusstraat 2
Love is not the only hot topic in February. “What a Genderful World” at the Tropenmuseum in the east of Amsterdam explores the popular topic of gender and gender identity. Discover the expression and experience of gender from all around the world through photographs, fashion, art and personal stories. Learn why police officers in Fiji wear skirts or why “he” and “she” do not exist in the Turkish language. With colourful, interactive and captivating exhibition spaces that are both educational and entertaining, this exhibition is the Tropenmuseum at its finest.

 

Hotel lobby of The Dylan Amsterdam with fire place and reception

Concierge’s Choice January: New Year, New Adventures

It’s a new year and a new decade at that. Each January presents the unique opportunity to boldly leave your comfort zone behind and to do something exciting and novel. Luckily in Amsterdam, there is an experience waiting around every corner. Perhaps you want to learn a new skill? Or you want to discover the secrets of the universe? Perhaps you simply want switch up your café routine. Whatever your ambitions for 2020, here are five Amsterdam places in which you can kick off the year on a bright and adventurous note.

Flo’s Appetizing
Jan Pieter Heijestraat 121
Just because you started the new year with healthy eating resolutions, doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy a savoury treat every now and again. Flo’s Appetizing in the West of Amsterdam offers classic bagel and schmear combinations, just like they have them in New York City. With an array of toppings, including a smoked fish selection and vegan options, it’s the bagel brunch place that we’ve been dreaming of.

Architectura & Natura
Leliegracht 22-H
With a history spanning 75 impressive years, the revered Architectura & Natura is one of the most famous bookstores in Europe. This makes it a fantastic place to stock up on reading material about architecture, landscape architecture and natural history. Choose from beautifully published monoliths as well as educational literature and add a little culture to your life (or just to your coffee table).

Ruelle Sous Marin
Stadhouderskade 60-11
“I must have flowers, always, and always,” said painter Claude Monet. We believe the cold of winter shouldn’t stop anyone from enjoying their favourite flora. Enter Ruelle Sous Marin in the De Pijp neighbourhood of Amsterdam and discover flower arrangements like you’ve never seen them before. Specialising in dried flower creations, Ruelle Sous Marin is the perfect spot to find beauty that will last forever. They also host workshops, so you can learn how to make dried flower arrangements on your own.

Stargazing
Anton Pannekoek Institute for Astronomy
Space exploration is getting more and more media attention, but what exactly is waiting for us out there? If you want to learn more about our solar system and are looking for an out-of-the-box date night idea, may we direct your attention to the Stargazing nights at the Anton Pannekoek Institute for Astronomy at the University of Amsterdam. After an introductory lecture, you can peer at the stars through one of the centre’s two telescopes.

Baking Lab
Linnaeusstraat 99
Are you keen on developing a new skill this year? Then rise to the occasion and sign up for Baking Lab’s many bread-baking courses. Serving up workshops in both Dutch and English, take a friend and learn how fermentation works or what it takes to make the perfect sourdough loaf. Check their events page and make sure to register early: These workshops sell out quickly!

 

 

Concierge’s Choice December: A Wonderful Holiday Time

It is, without a doubt, the most magical time of the year – and what a special treat it is to be in Amsterdam during the holiday season. Stroll along the canals with an oliebolletje in hand, marvel at the seasonal decorations, do some unique Christmas shopping and take part in the many activities the city has to offer. Discover below our most wintry picks of things to do, see and shop in Amsterdam in December.

Ice*Amsterdam
Museumplein
Pack your skates and make your way to Museumplein to do some pirouettes on the ice. Or, if you’re not a graceful ice skater, sip a hot chocolate, tug into a fluffy waffle and enjoy the general splendour of the surrounding Christmas market booths. Ice*Amsterdam presents the wonderful opportunity to enjoy a winter wonderland in the heart of the city, at the foot of the monumental Rijksmuseum.

Amsterdam Light Festival
Multiple locations
A spectacular tradition now in its eighth year, the Amsterdam Light Festival is an open-air light exhibition on the waters of Amsterdam. Snuggle up with someone special while you take in the breathtaking and pioneering installations by modern artists. With this year’s theme “Disrupt!”, you can experience Amsterdam’s canals in a whole new and exciting light. Book a canal tour early so as not to miss this truly unique event.

Christmas markets
Multiple locations
Soak in the holiday spirit at the myriad Christmas markets popping up in Amsterdam and across the Netherlands throughout the month of December. From the carnival-like Winter Paradise in Amsterdam’s south to the cosy Amsterdamsche Kerstmarkt in the west, find beautifully crafted gifts, drink a cup of mulled wine and revel in the joy of the season under twinklings light and a cosy atmosphere.

Patisserie Holtkamp
Vijzelgracht 15
A hot cup of coffee and buttery, sugary biscuits are a welcome treat on any winter afternoon. If you are looking for a sweet break to pick you up on a cold day, stop by Patisserie Holtkamp on the Vijzelgracht. They have a wide variety of baked delights that make excellent hostess gifts to bring along to holiday parties. If you ask us, the classic koggetjes, nicely wrapped with a silky bow, also make for a pretty delicious present.

De Posthumus Winkel
Sint Luciënsteeg 25
Isn’t there such a charm in sending real Christmas cards? Set yourself up for card-writing success with a visit to De Posthumus Winkel in the centre of Amsterdam. Their extensive selection of rubber stamps, velvety ink pads, colourful sealing wax, intricate calligraphy pens and stationary are the tools you need to make your handwritten correspondence a hit. Keep an eye out for their collection of bicycle stamps to add an extra Dutchie touch to your letters.

Image: Janus van den Eijnden