Antique Shopping in Amsterdam’s Spiegelkwartier

to 10px; WIDTH: 300px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 400px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”” border=”0″ />Dear Diva Readers,

top:2px;padding-right:5px;font-family:times;”>Antique shopping in Amsterdam’s Spiegelkwartier is a destination in itself. Its streets are lined with gabled houses that are home to art galleries, antiques shops and cafés. Popping inside one of the stores in this neighborhood, you might discover a canal house converted into an antique shop or atelier with the front door facing the Spiegelstraat and the back door leading to a quiet oasis, where on sunny Dutch days you’ll find the shopkeeper reading in the garden.

to 10px; WIDTH: 400px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 300px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”” border=”0″ />Walking into these antique shops in the Spiegelkwartier you are given a glimpse of what lies beyond the doors of some of the private residences and canal houses. You can imagine Empire porcelain sets clinking as Grand Dames serve afternoon tea on long wooden oak tables. And you can picture how life used to be lived with Dutch style in the days of yore.

to 10px; WIDTH: 300px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 400px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”” border=”0″ />If you’ve only one day to dedicate to antique shopping while in Amsterdam – this is it.
The Spiegelkwartier houses over 100 specialized art and antique dealers whose wide variety of objects for sale range from archeological finds to 17th century furniture, glass and Dutch Delftware, from oriental art to Art Nouveau, from tribal art to contemporary art, from old medical instruments and clocks to jewelry and, last but not least, icons, paintings and old master prints.

to 10px; WIDTH: 300px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 400px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”” border=”0″ />This is my favorite place to spend any day in Amsterdam – the best days to go are Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays when you’ll find the greatest numbers of shops are open! Mark your agenda’s for the Spiegelkwartier’s Open House this September 25 – 26 and consider booking an Antiques Diva Tour of Amsterdam to find your way into hidden courtyards, past countless canals and to antique shops spotting both the Spiegelkwartier and further afield in Jordaan and Old South!

Before I dash, I have 3 last words of travel advice before you go:

Firstly, remember that in Holland cash is king. Normally when you hear me utter this word of advice it’s because cash allows for better negotiation, but in the Spiegelkwartier where not many of the vendors will bargain significantly, that’s not my primary reason for warning you of this. In Holland, due to the high transaction fees for credit cards, not many small shops and vendors accept credit cards. Though an annoyance, you can do bank transfers should you find something you can’t live without. And by the way, even though you shouldn’t expect a major discount on Dutch antique negotiations, it is always worth asking for one! In general, in Holland, you can expect a courtesy 10% discount, but not much more.

to 10px; WIDTH: 400px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 300px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”” border=”0″ />Secondly, watch out for the bicycles. The small road width of the Spiegelstraat with its charming brick lane feel can lull you into thinking this is a pedestrian street – but it’s not! It is a main thoroughfare with bicyclists peddling past you. Crossing the streets always reminds me of playing Frogger as a child!

And lastly, don’t wear kitten heels. Amsterdam streets are killer on my shoes and a day out antiquing inevitably results in a trip to the shoe cobbler if I forget to wear my loafers. Of course, maybe I’m going a little “too far” with the comfortable shoe option in the picture on the right?

Until next time, Happy Shopping.

The Antiques Diva™

(photo credit right: The English Rose)

New York City Edition – “Dutch Art Now”

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top:2px;padding-right:5px;font-family:times;”>When I received the following email from tographs/Home.html” target=”_blank”>Eduard Planting Fine Art Photography in Amsterdam, I knew I had to share the details with NYC area readers – Dutch Art Now is taking a bite out of the Big Apple!

to 10px; WIDTH: 200px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 200px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”” border=”0″ />Eduard Planting writes:

If you happen to be in New York between 2 and 14 March, then please feel free to visit us at The National Arts Club and see the work of:

  • Reinier Gerritsen, from the “Wallstreet Subway” series
  • Diana Blok, from the “See through us” series
  • Igor Kruter, from the “Karakal Girls” series
  • Christopher Regis-Gludd, from the “Amsterdam” series
Dutch Art Now is an official concurrent art fair during the Armory Arts Week. An art show with a carefully chosen selection of art from either renowned or upcoming Dutch artists. For the second time this show is hosted in the distinguished National Arts Club. There will be 9 other galleries exhibiting as well.

The show will be opened officially by the Dutch Consul-General on Tuesday night, 2nd March – Please let Eduard Planting Fine Arts know if you’d like to be invited for that occasion!

For more information read: Going Dutch!

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Dutch Art Now:
Opening times & address:
March 3 – 14, 2010: 11AM – 5PM
National Arts Club
15 Gramercy Park South
New York City

Tot Straks!

The Antiques Diva™

Amsterdam – Secret Sale Days

top:2px;padding-right:5px;font-family:times;”>Long-term Diva Readers have heard me time and again divulge details on Amsterdam’s best kept secrets: The Open Door Days of Annette Brederode and Johan de Feijter.

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Mark your calendars for a sensational weekend of Antiques Shopping in Amsterdam!

June 5, 6 and 7, 2009
11am to 6pm.

To read more about past sales, click on the names of each vendor and get all the diva-licious details and pics!

Annette Brederode
Lijnbaansgracht #56D

The sale takes place on the 3rd floor in an inconspicuous building.. ring the buzzer and climb the stairs for shopping paradise!

Then pop a few blocks over for another Secret Sale!

Johan de Feijter
Bloemgracht 58

As always, Happy Shopping!

The Antiques Diva™

P.S. The photo at right was taken the night of our good friend Harry’s 50th birthday dinner at De Jonge Dikkert (a restaraunt just outside of Amsterdam in the city of Amstelveen). The restaurant is among our favorite Dutch treats, partially due to the historic ambiance inside a Dutch windmill built in 1672 and also owing to the sensational modern French Mediterranean cuisine done with a Dutch touch!

Last Minute Diva – The Affordable Art Fair Amsterdam

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top:2px;padding-right:5px;font-family:times;”>The Galerie Bianca Landgraaf sent me a wonderful invitation in the mail! Unfortunately for you, I was a little late opening the letter that sat on my desk for a week amid a pile of other “to do’s”! Better late than never, I thought I’d write a quick blog encouraging A’dam-based Diva Readers to drop what they’re doing this weekend and dash to The Affordable Art Fair in Amsterdam. The fair started on Oct 30 and there is only 1 day left to get to the fair – the last day of the fair is tomorrow Nov 2, 2008!

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Held in Gashouder, Westergasfabriek in downtown Amsterdam, 85 galleries set up shop selling art at affordable prices (anywhere from 100E to 5,000E). In addition to Galerie Bianca Landgraaf (who you’ll remember from my raving review of them at AFSH fair last April), other vendors on hand will be Zebra Gallery, Jan Roelof’s Contemporary Art, Jaski Art Gallery and Morgan Boyce Gallery!

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Last Minute Shoppers head to the Westgasfabriek for a sensational outing!
Sunday, Nov 2 – 11am – 6pm
Entry: 13E at the door, 11E if pre-purchased on the website.