Although I have never lived in Amsterdam, the city always feels like a home coming and I love to walk around and revisit old favourites and find new ones.
A friend took me to Paper Planes on Rokin for lunch and I think this might be my new favourite place for lunch. They do some great breakfast/lunch variations and a really good smoothies. The club sandwich stuffed with avocado and chicken definitely hit the spot and wasn’t expensive considering what you’d pay elsewhere in the area. I secretly regret not having the pancakes, but guess that means I have to go back!
It’s always worth checking out what is on at FOAM (Photography Museum Amsterdam), as they always have interesting temporary exhibitions and your time there will be well spent. They have an Araki exhibition till the 11th of March, worth a visit if you are interested in his highly stylised portraits.
The VolksHotel in Amsterdam East reminded me a lot of Hotel Michelberger in Berlin and it’s a must if you are into quirky boutique hotels for a reasonable price. Even if you don’t book a room you can hop in for a quite drink or bite to eat in their bar area. In summer you can enjoy drink and the view on the terrace on their rooftop terrace. If you strip it down to the essentials: bed (hard, but that’s the way I like it), shower (great pressure and it has one of those big shower heads, though not everyone might like the idea the shower is divided from the sleeping area by only a glass wall) and wi-fi (worked perfect for me) it gets two thumbs up from me. It’s a bit outside the tourist centre, but doesn’t necessarily mean it’s in the middle of nowhere, it holds everything you need so you don’t really miss out on anything and you can crawl to your bed after cocktails.
After Hint Hunt in London I got the hang of escape games, luckily my friends were curious too and we booked a session at Room of Riddles. If you missed the hype: in these escape games you are locked in a room and (usually) given one hour to solve a series of clues and break out of the room. I like to think I have a good imagination, so I can really dive into the story. It was less challenging than Hint Hunt but still interesting and we took the record of the day for completing it the quickest. I’m looking forward to try the other rooms they have too.
Damrak (the street between Centraal station and Dam Square) is always crazy busy and you shouldn’t stop there … except for a quick fries stop at Manneken Pis. There is a big chance there is a queue, but it is worth the wait as they serve one of the best Flemish fries in the city. And Vincent is right: We put mayonaise on our fries … we fuckin’ drown ’em in that shit – and you should too. But if that doesn’t get you salivating, try satay sauce, a combination of satay and mayo (called oorlog) or curry ketchup/mayo and chopped onions (special sauce).