Looking particularly enticing is the Fabrique Erotique life-sized puppet show at the infamous Casa Rosso. This is an easy, guilt-free way to tell your parents that you went to a live sex theatre in the Red Light District. Won’t they be so proud!
“But ma, I did it for the culture!”
For even more unique experiences, check out this list of other things you can do this weekend in Amsterdam:
SATURDAY 6 SEPT
Valtifest- 7 Deadly Sins
Valtifest is a heavily themed festival which marks the end of the festival season every year, and is once again raiding the NDSM wharf with this year’s theme: The 7 Deadly Sins. You have exactly 3 days to think up an ass-kicking costume and join the (over-the-top) fun.
Here are some photos of when the V-crew went in 2011. I am sure they will just LOVE that I am dragging those photos up again! (Sorry, not sorry!)
Pintar Rapido Weekend
Fancy yourself a painter? Or perhaps you really are, in fact, a painter? (Sorry: “ar-teeest“.)
Super, this weekend is for you! After much success in Spain and London, the Pintar Rapido artist’s event is coming to Amsterdam. Painters are welcome to sign up, pick a spot in Amsterdam, and make a painting in one day, which will then be exhibited on Sunday in the Posthoornkerk on the Haarlemerstraat.The top award is 1,000 clams, so if you truly are a (starving) artist, then this is the event for you.
If you have been following Hotel V’s blog long enough, you might remember our super-stagiare-turned-V-Crew-memberZosia. Zosia has since spread her wings and flown off (sniff) to start a unique tour concept which guides visitors on a culinary wander through the city (by foot or by bike).
Hungry Birds has three different tours running on Saturday, so check them out!
And don’t just take our word for it just because Zosia is a friend of V (that’s straight nepotism!). Read the reviews on Tripadvisor, where Hungry Birds is rated as the Number 4 thing to do in amsterdam!
This weekend will mark the 20th anniversary of the Sunday Morning concerts in the Muziekgebouw, and to celebrate they are offering a free concert to be broadcast live at 10 am on a large screen on the square. Bring a blanket and a picnic breakfast*, sit back, listen and enjoy!
* a breakfast is apparently also offered for this event, but no word as to what pricing or food yet!
CineRoest Jamieson Movie Night
Back over to the East on Sunday for a special movie night at Roest, commemorating the late, great Robin Williams with a screening of Hook at 7 pm. entry is 5 euro and that also gets you a Jameson & Gingerale. A hook of a bargain if you ask me!
(Did you see what we did there? ….Didn’t really work, though, didi it? Sorry.)
There you go, kiddos! There is truly no excuse to stay in this weekend.
Floating stages, open skies and beautiful music. Get ready for it, because this year’s Grachtenfestival edition will be held between August 15th and August 24th.
The Grachtenfestival (‘Canal Festival’) is an annual festival of classical music held at special locations around the city centre. Over a period of ten days, the Grachtenfestival provides a stage for young musical talent, choosing an appropriate and often historical setting for each musical event on or beside Amsterdam’s numerous waterways.
The Grachtenfestival’s combination of location and repertoire means that classical music is performed to the highest levels, but presented in a way that is accessible to all. This is what makes the festival unique in the world.
Hopefully the Dutch weather cooperates a little so you can pick your spot along the canals and enjoy a truely special event.
having or showing a merry, lively mood: gay spirits; gay music. Synonyms: cheerful, gleeful, happy, glad, cheery, light hearted, joyous, joyful, jovial; sunny, lively, vivacious, sparkling; chipper, playful.
Sounds good to us!
From the 26th of July till the 3rd of August it’s Amsterdam Gay Pride time again!
Get ready for a full week of events, exhibitions, shows, parties and a town filled with colourful people. www.amsterdamgaypride.nl is the website that provides you with all the necessary details, dates and locations. Make sure to visit one the many sport events, our favourite is with out a doubt the Drag Queen Olympics.
The Gay Pride week is traditionally closed off with a full power party weekend starting this coming Friday the 1st. Check the complete party agenda here.
The highlight of the Amsterdam Gay Pride weekend is the famous Canal Parade on Saturday afternoon. Where most parades use trucks, Amsterdam has boats! 80 spectacular decorated boats with beautiful (and scantily clad) boys and girls will sail from 14:00 till 18:00 through the Prinsengracht and Amstel river. The gay parade is watched by 300,000 spectators every year, so you better get there early to secure your spot along the canals!
Hot town, summer in the city! As the temperatures reach 30 degrees centigrade these days it’s very important to stay hydrated. And oh boy, do the Dutch know how.
As we all know, Heineken started here in 1864 and still is one of the world’s leading beer brands….. but when in Amsterdam nowadays, why not try one of our new microbreweries and quench your thirst! Over the last few years quite a few new ones started and so now we have a grand total of 18 small independent breweries spread throughout the city.
The iconic windmill “de Gooyer” in the eastern part of town holds one of the “bigger” ones: Brewery ‘t IJ. Their beers are available in stores and bars all over town but getting one at the source beats it all of course. Their terrace is at the base of the windmill and you’ll be in the company of many locals and visitors alike.
If you don’t want to venture out too far, the inner city holds many hidden treasures and one of our favourites is brewery De Prael. This small but productive brewery is located in the Red Light District so if you’re in need of some Dutch courage this place offers more then enough. J (just up the road from our hotel at Nesplein)
Just around the corner from our hotel at Frederiksplein we have (besides the Heineken Experience) a brand new player on the Amsterdam beer market, Troost! (meaning “comforting”) they brew 3 types at the moment, a Blond, a Weizen and an IPA. The tasting hall is situated within the brewery facilities so you cant get it more direct than this, straight from the vat to your glass!
So, have fun out there and follow our advice carefully: stay hydrated!
All the other names and addresses you can find on this website.
We suppose if there is one rule of thumb when it comes to restaurants, it would be: The more specialized you are, the more special you will be.
With that in mind, please allow us to introduce you to Meatballs.
Meatballs is a small drop-in restaurant, serving (OMG you guessed it, you’re so clever!) meatballs from a variety of meats (chicken meatballs, whaaaat?), as well as meat-less balls for the vegetarians among us (try the pumpkin ball- so yummy!). On top of that they have a selection of starches including potatoes, pasta, polenta and gnocchi, but you can also get your meatballs on tiny little buns to make tiny little meatballs sandwiches. Adorable!
Meatballs officially opens this weekend on the Warmoesstraat 15, so if you’re around Dam Square, you might as well check out these damn meatballs (see what we did there?).
Are you gay? Do you like films? Do you like theater?
In short: are you a gay film-loving theater-goer?
If yes, than you are going to LOOOOVE Amsterdam in August. This is really your time to shine in the Big Moke.
If you’re not all of the above, or not even one of the above, then fret not. I guarantee there is still something for you to do this month!
Check it out:
1 – 5 August, Amsterdam Gay Pride (website): This festival probably needs no explanation. It’s gay, it’s proud, and it’s back, with the famous boat parade taking place on Saturday 4 August. (Gays on water! What more do you need?) The city is host to a full lineup of parties, sports, concerts, gay cinema, and a lot of educational and informative events such as Self Defense workshops, free HIV tests, and a reading and tour about Homosexuality in the Animal Kingdom. Amsterdam is known as the most gay-friendly city in Europe, and these 5 days will show you why.
Also worth pointing out is the “openminded” Beach Party at Roest on Friday 3 August from 7 pm, called Gaywatch. Think: beach volleyball, BBQ, and Baywatch-worthy competitions. The DJ starts at 10pm and the party goes until 3 am.
OK, first let me get all of the movie-stuff out of the way:
until 19 August, Bioscoop op het Podium in Carre, (program found here): Since the theater season has moved outdoors for the summer (more on that below), the Carre theater has little to do. So it is turning into a makeshift but very beautiful cinema for August showing well-loved classics, such as the Rocky Horror Picture Show, My Fair Lady and Casablanca. Classic movies in a classic setting- I’m pretty sure this was what movie dates were meant to be like.
2, 3, & 4 August, Drijf in Bios voor Pampus (more info here): If you like movies, and you have a boat, then here is a very special treat indeed. For just three nights, the nearby island of Pampus (once a fortification island made to defend Amsterdam from attack by water, now a Unesco world Heritage Site) will be hosting an outdoor cinema screen which you can only reach by boat. No word yet on the movie lineup, but I imagine the experience here is the location more than the movie. There’s not many places that have a drive-in movie theater on the water, so reserve ahead to make sure you get a spot! Movies begin when the sun goes down. For those less fortunate, you can also take an organized boat from Ijburg and watch the movie from a seat on the island. 15 euro per person for the film, 25 euro if you need to catch the organized boat as well.
8 – 19 August, World Cinema Amsterdam (website): Only two years young, this film festival celebrates the underdogs in the film world far from Hollywood- those films comnig out of Latin America, Asia and Africa. With 2 indoor locations (Rialto and De Balie) and two outdoor locations (Marie Heinekenplein and Vondelpark) and 48 films and shorts, there is a wealth of choice. This year the festival will be focusing extra attention on Brazilian Stories. The free movies on Marie Heinekenplein are between 15 to 19 August, so go early and grab a chickpea burger at Restaurant Barca nearby (they’re delicious!).
22 August – 1 September, Pluk de Nacht (the website still needs to be updated with the 2012 program) More open air cinema- Pluk de Nacht is back! (It means ‘Seize the Night’, although the official English name is the less-interesting sounding ‘Open Air Film Festival’) Every night a new programme of short films and feature length independent films is shown behind Central Station, with the water at your back. And it’s FREE! Bring your bottle of wine and some snacks, and don’t forget some comfortable beach chairs or blankets. If you have spare time, get there early to snag a good spot, because this is a popular festival.
Every Saturday evening in August, Open Air Films at the Ketelhuis (website): Hey, do you know what nobody thought of this summer? Outdoor movies! Or no, wait….everyone did. Including the Ketelhuis in Westerpark! Every Saturday evening in August, starting when the sun goes down, a recent film will be shown on the outdoor big screen. Perfect way to end a picnic day or to prolong one that you don’t want to end. On the 25th there is a special surprise film chosen by mega-blogger and Friend of V Nalden from Nalden.net. The man’s got good taste, so I’d definitely try and catch that one if I were you.
31 August, Cinema Curioso(website): In what sounds like a helluva funny night for film-lovers, the EYE Film Institute will be showing two hours of film clips featuring the Best of the Worst in B-movie History. They say the road to hell is paved with good intentions, and so welcome to Cinema Hell where directors of film flops such as ‘Papaya: Love Goddess of the Cannibals’ and ‘Yog: The Space Amoebe’ really did have good intentions! Honest! These clips will be accompanied with live commentary from a movie scholar, so if you’re a fan of the bizarre, come and get your fill. And if that isn’t enough to entice you, let me try this: rampaging pygmie terrors! Yeah, exactly. See you there.
And if the Pluk de Nacht, Ketelhuis, World Cinema, Drijf in de Bios, Cinema Curioso, and Carre Cinema wasn’t enough movie for you, then stop by the Stadsarchief basement film hall during the whole month of August to see a selection of films about Amsterdam in the 1900s – 1920s. This collection of news clips, street shots and commercials runs on a constant loop until 5 pm, so drop by whenever you are in the neighborhood and get a feel for what life was like here before you were even a thought in your grandparent’s heads.
OK now that all things cinema is out of the way, here are some things to do in August that don’t involve the silver screen:
1 – 31 August, Return of the Swing Club at Mediamatic(website): If there’s one thing that naturally goes hand in hand, it would be summer and swings. So how appropriate that Mediamatic have once again set up the swings in their Oostenburgereiland factory. Pay your 2 euro and have a go. This time they have even added more gymnastics equipment like a trampoline, and a trapeze for the really brave.
1 – 4 August, Comedy Train at Toomler (lineup here): Every year the Toomler comedy club hosts English-speaking comedians from the UK, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and the US. These are some of the best in the English-speaking world, so go get your funny on. (And check here first to see if you can’t snag some last minute tickets!)
every Saturday afternoon, Boom Chicago’s Deep Undercover (more info here): I don’t know about you, but I’m a sucker for two things in life: games and chocolate. This outdoor theater event has absolutely nothing to do with chocolate (sadly), but everything to do with games! This is a play that you, as an audience member, take part in. Armed with only a cell phone number, you call on the day of the play to see where you have to go, and then follow the clues from there. Think of it as “Moving Street Theater”, and just go with the flow.
10 – 19 August, Grachten Festival (website): This much-loved festival along Amsterdam’s historic canals brings a touch of class to the city each year. Featuring well-known classical music artists as well as up-and-coming talent in the classical world at indoor and outdoor venues across the city, the best ones to catch are, of course, the free concerts along the water. There are also workshops on how to make your own instruments at the library, and a special show not ON the water but UNDER the water! Each year has a theme, and this year that theme is LOVE. And who doesn’t love love, right?
10 – 26 August, De Parade (website): a street music and theater festival taking place in Martin Luther King Park. This travelling festival has a little something for everyone, even if that something is, say….a post-apocalyptic story inspired by Elvis, rockabilly, and 50’s music. See? Something for everyone. Expect music, theater, a few antique carnival rides, tents, shows and food, and there is a special program just for children.
Hi! In the eternal words of Laser 3.14, Are you (still) reading me?!!? If so then I applaud your efforts. Just a bit more to tell you…
12 August (Amstelpark) & 26 August (Park Frankendael), Pure Markt, (website) This Sunday market is for real food lovers and purists. If you are the kind of person who likes your food local, your mushrooms straight from the forest, or your waste composted by worms, then this is the conscious market for you. But this isn’t just a hippie thing! Artisenal cakes and breads, handmade crafts, woodoven pizzas are all also on the agenda, plus much more.
17 – 19 August Hartjesdagen op Zeedijk (more info here and here): This special festival in the Zeedijk has to be seen to be believed. With roots going back as far as the Middle Ages, the new purpose of this festival is to celebrate the Zeedijk neighborhood- once a place where no one wanted to live, now a colorful neighborhood where something is always going on. There is a contest for Best Dressed Man and Best Dressed Woman, so you can imagine that this brings out even more color in the area during these three days. Grab your hot pink wig and make a show out of it. Who knows, you might even win a prize!
Sunday 19 August, Moderne Hippies present Summer Love(website): A market (restyled vintage, bags, shoes, illustrations), workshops on how to be a modern hippie (beach yoga, raw food, hula hooping, you know the deal), and a DIY barbeque, all at Roest on a (hopefully) warm summer Sunday.
23 – 29 August, Summer Dance Forever (website): Admit it, many is the time you were home on a weekend day and caught yourself absorbed in America’s Next Best Dance Crew on MTV, thinking, “I could do that….my robot isn’t so bad…”. Well now here is your chance to watch and even learn, because this weeklong festival is all things street dance- from hiphop to house, reggae to funk. Well-known dancers from all over the world will converge on Amsterdam to battle it out, put on a show, and to show you how too.
24, 25 & 26 August, Uitmarkt (website) The start of the cultural season. On-your-mark-get-set-GO! Spread all over the city, each theater and venue will be showing you a taste test of what the season has in store. The perfect time for culture junkies to get their fix.
24 August (to 16 September) Magneet Festival (website): The Magneet Festival is a three week spectacle. Their motto? “No spectators, only participants”, which means that you, the festival-goer, will be the main attraction! So bring your talent, send your good idea, or just simply go with your open mind and have fun.
Starting 30 August, Amsterdam Fringe Festival (website): 10 days, 80 theatre groups, 33 locations , performance, live art, (music) theatre, dance & uninhibited energy from the Netherlands and the rest of the world. Key word(s): avant-garde.
Now children, if I catch you at home or in your hotel room on any night in August, I hereby ban you from the city for being a culture bore.