The Hague as seen by Danella Smith

danellasmithband2A short introduction, who are you and where did you live before you moved to The Hague, what’s the biggest difference so far?
Before moving to the Hague I lived in a small town in the north of Namibia, Otjiwarongo. Otjiwarongo is so small if you close your eyes as you arrive by car you will miss it when you exit before having glimpsed it. There is not much to do as it’s really a town that supports the farmers in the region. There are shops, bistros and a great community however, it’s not the ideal place to work on your music career (though it does offer inspiration for song lyrics).Compared to the Hague, which is culturally so rich with theatres, museums, festivals and music, it’s absolutely two different worlds.

Which location is the best kept secret for relaxing?
I take my dog for his morning walk in the Scheveningen Bos and it has become my place where I let my thoughts wander, and have my head cleared. There I witness all the seasons change which has become something dear to me, seeing from one day to the next the bos explode with spring. In Namibia, seasonal change is from drought to dry to rain.

danellasmithband1The Hague is known for its extensive list of events & happenings throughout the year, which is your favourite?
Parkpop, it’s the biggest festival in Europe right here in The Hague with great international artists playing.

Where do you go to get the most tasty meal?
My favourite little restaurant is called Ruen Thai in The Hague. It’s very small and intimate and feels like your mother is cooking a delicious meal for you.

Which bars are the best places to meet new people without feeling an outsider?
Cafe de Bieb and Cafe de Libertijn are my favourite hang outs, one can have a beer and snack and meet people from all over the world in a “gezellige” environment.

danellasmithband3Obviously you are a music buff, which place in The Hague is the most inspirational for you as a musician and why?
Paard van Troje, is the ultimate performance venue, where I would like to play. It’s the place for musicians who want to make a mark. With its immense history and 40 years of existence it’s the ultimate venue for musicians here in the Hague.

Where is the next gig in The Hague? 
Our next gig in the Hague will be on July 18th where Danella Smith Band and Friends are performing at Cafe de Bieb a midsummer’s night fest. Please join us for this for a great, song-filled evening!
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Zeta the eclectic meeting spot

If you’ve even been to the Grote Markt on a sunny day, then you will know that this is a popular meeting place. Chances are you probably didn’t even notice that there are several different cafes, as they all seem to melt into one big terras. Zeta does not necessarily stand out, but it’s literally next door to the more well known cafe the Zwarte Ruiter.

Whilst each cafe attempts to create it’s own individual style, Zeta is the pearl. Zeta serves good coffee (bonus!) and there is truly a wide range of different people to be found throughout the day. For a cafe to appeal to such an eclectic crowd is quite unique.

Zeta Zeta

The hidden treasure for food lovers is the kitchen at the back of the bar, where scrumptious thai food is cooked with love and served by friendly staff. Even the most fussy eater will be happy here as they are capable to adjust to your individual needs. My tip is to order the Pad Thai, but you have been warned, only order if you are really hungry, this food fills! On my to eat list is the Crème de Brulée with lemongrass, I’ve just never been able to fit in so far.

Grand Cafe Walter Benedict – Denneweg

Walter Benedict

Walter BenedictA couple of weeks ago I was invited for coffee at Grand Cafe Walter Benedict which had just recently opened. I was pleasantly surprised by the ambiance, service and the most important aspect: the cappuccino was really good, bonus! Walter Benedict serves breakfast all day, yes all day, they really captured the French atmosphere without overdoing it. The entire vibe is so laid back that I will definitely be going back again soon to try the food.

Starbucks now in The Hague


After years of speculation Starbucks finally opened it’s first location in The Hague last week. A small group of Starbucks fans met up at the end of the afternoon to enjoy their first of many drinks.  The location at Central Station is surprisingly quite big although it seems to be in a temporary spot as the entire station is being rebuilt. What is your favourite coffee spot in The Hague?

Scheveningen, lots to do and see

Scheveningen beach bar
When the sun shines in The Hague most people head to Scheveningen to enjoy the seaside and all it has to offer. The beach has recently been extended and the restaurants have opened again for business after a long winter break. You will find a wide selection of food and night-life along the boulevard, but also on the North Beach and around the Harbour.

Other attractions are the Casino, water sports, diverse museums with excellent exhibitions each year (such as Museum Beelden aan Zee) and walking routes in and around the dunes. If you are visiting with kids go to Sea Life and they are sure to also enjoy Glow Golf on the Pier.

Upcoming events – save the date:

Transport: Tram 1, 9, 11 & bus 22

* Parking can be a problem on sunny days, read here for info on where to park.

image credit: Photo by Martin Palmer

Trendy Fushion at Mochi Restaurant

CRAVE Buzz Party 2 3

Mochi Restuarant is located just behind the Frederikstraat in the Willemspark area of The Hague. You are guaranteed a great night out with fab food at Mochi and friendly service. I have been to Mochi twice in the last 6 months, it really is a great place to have nice evening out.

While I am not a seafood person the highlight for me was most definitely their signature dish Frikandel speciaal! The chef’s menu is the most popular choice, allowing you to get the full Mochi experience. And for the dessert lovers you will not be disappointed. If you go to Mochi make sure you order the Frikandel and report back, and be sure to say hi to Lissette.

Location: Mallemolen 12-A, 2585 XJ The Hague
Telephone: 070 3635763
Website: mochirestaurant.nl
Transport: Tram 9 tramstop Javastraat; Tram 1 & 10 tramstop Alexanderstraat; bus 20 & 22 busstop Nassauplein

photo credit: charlottemeindersma.com

ATH Tweetup 2011

#TweetUPTheHague-Royally-Announced_MG_3763
Yes a Tweetup! Where and when that’s the question!

We would like to organize a ATH tweetup but over the last months we haven’t been able to find the right location for a FAB meetup. Do you have suggestions or recommendations leave a comment, we’d love to hear from you.