Monday, August 30, 2010

Practice your painting skills at Royal Delft

When scanning the souvenir shops in Amsterdam or the airport to bring something home which is typicallly Dutch you will see a lot "Delft blue" souvenirs. Delft Blue is original earthenware in this typical blue colour. Its factory is located in Delft, a city which can easily be reached from Amsterdam by car or train. Most of the souvenirs found anywhere in the country are replicates but you can find the real deal in Delft at Royal Delft. It can be easily combined in a day trip when visiting Delft and maybe even Den Haag (The Hague). But also a quick visit to Royal Delft is something which can easily be done as Delft is just 1 hour from Amsterdam.

The Koninklijke Porceleyne Fles / Royal Delft is the only remaining factory of the 32 earthenware factories that were established in Delft in the 17th century. Although it is not exactly sure when the first factories started to operate, we do know that already in the second half of the 16th century there were factories in Amsterdam, Haarlem and Middelburg which produced multicoloured (or polychrome) earthenware.

A visit to Royal Delft includes:
• Painting demonstration, the company museum with antique Delft Blue pieces, and the production process in the factory. The tour takes about thirty minutes.
• The showroom has a comprehensive collection of hand-painted Delft Blue by Royal Delft, as well as an extensive selection of Dutch earthenware and souvenirs.
• During the high season you can enjoy a drink and a bite to eat in the Brasserie.

When visiting individual you can take an audio tour which is available daily in Dutch, English, German, French, Japanese, Spanish, Italian and Chinese. Guided tours must be booked in advance. (Groups <20 people price on request) And what about attending a workshop where you can show your painting skills creating your own Delft Blue earthenware? These are great souvenirs and gifts. Note that the painted products are not ready to be taken home immediately as they must first be fired. The products can be collected or sent after approximately ten working days.

Have a look at the website of Royal Delft:

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Amsterdam Boutique Apartments

A stylish apartment located in the souterrain of an authentic, monumental canal house in the centre of Amsterdam. This doesn't sound as an apartment for rent at all, but it is. This is one of the places to stay you wish you can find and book when planning your trip.

The apartment is spacious and luxury and the modern oriental accents provide the finishing touch. I just love the bathroom with jacuzzi with mood lights and the beautiful picture on the wall. It's zen in the city. A perfect place to unwind after an exciting day, or night, in vibrant Amsterdam.

The location could not have been better right behind the Spui and near many places of interest such as Leidse square, Rembrandt square, Dam square, flower market, the museum area and the main shopping streets. When staying here you have Amsterdam literally on your doorstep. And not to forget the Singel canal with it's authentic canal houses.

When staying here you can enjoy the luxury of a 5 star hotel in your "own" apartment. The owner thought about everything from a PC with internet access to a very complete kitchenette with an espresso machine and from in house private yoga classes to in house massage service.

Interested after reading this? Visit their website: