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.

&Foam Life through a lens featured

For those who’ve been to the cutting-edge contemporary photo gallery Foam and considered taking the hit of a lengthy jail term to take something off the walls and home with them, &Foam is the ice-cool all-legal answer to your problem. The retail extension of the gallery proper, it stocks boutique photography magazines, limited editions of Foam’s exhibitions, photographic prints and the odd piece of up-and-coming designer clothing as well. Also a gallery in itself, &Foam’s carefully designed matte-grey warehouse space has become one of Amsterdam’s main creative hubs for the city’s lensheads; holding quarterly collaborations that explore photography’s interplay with other creative disciplines and throwing many an exhibition launch bash.

Proef Restaurant Cuisine by design featured

It’s a “flavor meets form” affair at Proef Restaurant; “eating designer” Marije Vogelzang’s fresh, kitsch and oh-so-pretty dining venture in the Westergasfabriek complex.

Vintage floral china, marshmallow art installations and beverages served in jam jars—an abundance of cute and arty details consistently fill the entire dining experience. With a kitchen so open you’re practically sitting in it, the relaxed atmosphere extends right through to the menu with their offerings of casual tapas style dishes. The focus here is on keeping the presentation true to the way Mother Nature herself designed food, while proving modesty and innovation are a perfect pair in creating flavours that will make lasting impressions. Ingredients are always seasonal and organic and are likely to be grown right out the back in their vegetable patch.

Ensure you kick off your dinner with a civilised aperitif—no where else will serve you cocktails with edible flowers and floating peas. Behold the ‘Full Frontal Flower Shower’ or ‘Rubarbarella’, and beware, their innocence lies solely in their appearance. Simplicity never looked or tasted so good.

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.

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