Harvest and Company Vintage reimagined featured

Part vintage furniture store, part project hub and part artisan coffee bar, Harvest and Company has come to market in a big way in Amsterdam’s Oud West. Throwing accepted notions of interior goods shops out of a very high window (so that you wouldn’t be able to recognise them even if they survived the fall), they went back to the drawing board to create a bold new breed of design boutique.

The white-walled and polished-concrete floored space (dotted here and there with potted plants and cacti) plays home to a curated collection of wall decorations, custom-made tables, and industrial lights and chairs—all more than worthy additions to even the slickest of pads. And if the burden of browsing has left those eyelids drooping, you can kick back for a caffeine hit courtesy of the several specialty blends available from the in-house coffee bar.

Battalion Boutique Art imitating life

Part showroom and part boutique, Battalion is an interactive art gallery and shop in the Westerpark. In an instance of art imitating life, the imaginative renderings inside Battalion walk the fine line between mainstream appeal and underground edge. The gallery’s two floors are flooded with light as its walls and shelves pay homage to inspiring and innovative design.

Frédéric At home in Amsterdam featured

Fed up with cheesy watercolor paintings of stormy seas or rustically rolling hills? Or those horrible MDF night stands you find in every big hotel chain? Frédéric has an alternative for you. He and his friends offer a range of extremely cozy guestrooms, apartments and authentic houseboats on or near the Brouwersgracht (officially elected in 2008 as the most beautiful street in Amsterdam).

Not just the location is perfect, its surroundings are too: close to the farmers market on the Noordermarkt (on Saturday), the Haarlemmerdijk with its fine restaurants as well as the Jordaan area with its famously gezellige cafés. Still too lazy to do everything by foot? Frédéric also rents out bicycles for 10 euro a day.

All the accommodation is decorated to make you feel right at home. On the lower-priced end there are simple rooms with twin beds and bathroom and shower in the hall (starting at 60 Euros). On the other side of the spectrum Frédéric offers luxurious apartments with fully equipped kitchens, extravagant bubble baths and views any local would kill for (up to 145 Euros). Maybe not suitable for backpackers on a tight budget, but very reasonably priced compared to the bigger hotels.

Blijburg Welcome to Happyville featured

This extremely cheerful restaurant/café/party place is uniquely located on an artificial beach in the far northeast of Amsterdam. With lots of quirkily decorated parties in the summer, and a roaring fireplace and live performances on wintertime Sundays, it’s a perfect city getaway all year round.

Surprisingly the food at this alternative beach-club is great (thank chef Rene Pronk for that). And though the service can be slow, the retro-hippie atmosphere more than makes up for it.

Allowing both swimmers and those who prefer not to get their hair wet to dry off or warm up in front of beach bonfires amidst, Blijburg always attracts interesting crowds rarely found in town.

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