Slideshow of wandering through The Hague

I found this video, actually a slide show with some nice music of Youtube user Deiktes
His comment:

Brief photo slide made of pictures taken while walking around in The Hague, during a trip to Holland in 2006. The Hague, is the third-largest city in the Netherlands after Amsterdam and Rotterdam. It belongs to the province of South Holland, of which it is also the provincial capital, and it is part of the conglomerate metropolitan area Randstad, with a population of 6,659,300 inhabitants. The Hague is the actual seat of the Dutch government and Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands lives and works in The Hague, but the official capital of the Netherlands is Amsterdam. It is also home to over 150 international (legal) organisations The Hague originated around 1230, when Floris IV, Count of Holland purchased land alongside a pond (now the hofvijver) in order to build a hunting residence. When the Dukes of Burgundy gained control over the counties of Holland and Zeeland in the beginning of the 15th century, their seat was located in The Hague. Probably since those days, the stork has been the symbol of the city. At the beginning of the Eighty Years’ War, the Spanish troops easily occupied the town, due to the absence of walls. From 1588 The Hague also became the location of the government of the Dutch Republic. In order for the administrations to maintain control over city manners, The Hague never received city rights (although it did have many privileges, normally only attributed to cities). Parts of the city sustained heavy damage during WWII, and the Atlantic Wall was built through part of the city, causing whole neighbourhoods to be torn down. In 1945, due to navigational errors a heavily populated and historic part of the city was bombed. Because of its history, The Hague lacks a large historical inner city; the older parts are mostly from the 19th century and the early 20th century.

As one of the participants our recent brainstorm session said: “It’s always interesting to see your own city through the eyes of a visitor”.

Ooievaart Canal Tour Offers Rich and Unique History of The Hague

Amsterdam isn’t the only city with canals. Find out more about the rich and fascinating history of The Hague during the Ooievaart Canal Tour.

Zieke canal
Canal Tours are not just limited to Amsterdam. Since 2003 the Ooievaart Canal Tour has offered a unique glimpse into the 400+ years of hidden history along the canals of The Hague.  It reveals little gems such as the home of Dutch painter Jan Steen, the location of the smallest church in The Hague, the residence of author and native son Louis Couperus, famous Dutch dancer turned WWI spy Mata Hari’s residence, and the beautiful holiday mansions for Dutch/Indonesian merchants on the Mauritskade. The Ooievaart Tour also provides a wealth of information on the former uses of the canals, their original role in the security of the city, the trade routes and the goods The Hague exported, and interesting landmarks for the city that flourished near the water’s edge.

The tour guide is very knowledgeable and the tour is conducted in Dutch; however, you can request a guidebook in the language of your choice when you arrive at the boat.  The English guidebook was filled with interesting information and offered a map to all 21 points of interest. The tour is an hour and a half and was a great way to introduce the city to new visitors and residents alike.

Of note: The boats are uncovered, but with good reason – during its development The Hague did not create bridges over the canals, but rather built roads directly across the water. This makes some of the tour more interactive – be prepared to duck quite a bit!

Highlights from the tour can be found on Flickr. For more information on the Ooievaart Canal Tours, please visit their website: www.ooievaart.nl

Plastic Deformation

Plastische Vervorming / Plastic deformationOn September 11 Plastic Deformation (Plastische Vervorming), the invisible life of trams will premiere as a theatrical evening on site in the HTM tram depot.

Sophie’s father her best friend dies in a tram accident. One year later everybody is telling her she needs  come to terms to the grief and be bereavement.

She does this in her own way by reconstructing the last days of his life in detail. She maps his last footsteps and reconstructs every conversation he had before the accident and she finds out things about him she would never have known otherwise.

Plastic Deformation/distortion  is produced by Theatre Group in association with The Arsenal jetzt. The play was inspired by the location itself, Jonathan Safran Foer’s book Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, BBC’s In Treatment and the 1977 Tenerife airport disaster.

The play is in Dutch.

Thu, Fri, Sat from September 9 through October 23. (Try-outs Sept. 9 & 10)

more info here.

This article is translated from Dutch.
De Nederlandse versie is te lezen op Hofstijl.

thanks for editing @earlybird44.

Rain Rain Rain Today – We’re in dire need of Flipping High Heels

Morgen weer naar zwemles

The reason for choosing this photo is threefold:

  1. It is really rainy in The Hague today
  2. I like you to meet the very nice man Roel Wijnands who made this photo and to induce you to check his impressive and amazing photo portfolio on Flickr
  3. As a reminder to self to find out where you can buy these flippant high heels

Uitmarkt: Preview of the Culture you can enjoy in The Hague in the 2010-2011 Season

The first weekend of September as usual all theaters come together in The Hague and give an open air preview of their programs of the coming cultural season. Kudos to Piet Plaat for granting me permission to publish his beautiful impression here.

Crisis in The Hague



Two years ago Mark Rutte proved on board of the lifeboat of Scheveningen, the Beach Resort of The Hague, that the lifeboat can survive a 360 roll over. Mark Rutte is the leader of the VVD party, the biggest of many small political parties in Dutch Parliament, since the general elections of June 9, 2010. Yesterday it became clear the coalition talks he was leading with several other parties (again) wouldn’t result in a new Dutch Government. Always amazing how thorough the Dutch can be in trade and industry, but not in politics. Marc will need all buoyancy of his life vest to get the ship of state upright.

International Day The Hague 2010

The International Court of Justice

Have you ever wondered what the Peace Palace really looks like inside but never had the chance to go there? On September 19th several international organisations based in The Hague are open to the public. Tours will be given by the staff and you can learn more about what each organisation does. To visit the organisations that make the Hague the International City of Peace and Justice you will need to register online before 17 Septmeber.

On the same day there are several Fairs in City Hall. The annual Feel at Home in The Hague fair is in the Atrium with info for newcomers but also international residents. A chance to connect with cultural organisations, sports and social clubs and other businesses based in The Hague. The International Fair is also in City Hall on the first floor and you can meet other international organisations like Europol & Special Court for Sierra Leone. Debates will be held in the Raadzaal.

Which organisation will you be visiting?

M Building by Rem Koolhaas cancelled by The Hague

The City of The Hague has canceled the M Building by Rem Koolhaas just after they hade broke ground in front of the The Hague Central Train Station and had spend roughly € 2 mio planning costs.

I would say better stop here than completing it in error. In the present economic circumstances it is uncertain whether such mega (some would say magalomanic) building could be filled with paying tenants. The City of The Hague had guaranteed to rent a substantial part of it , so there is a huge saving post gained.

Off course it is a loss that we will miss a building of one of the most foremost architects we have in The Netherlands and even will lose one when the Dutch Dance Theater that was designed by Rem Koolhaas will be replaced by a new building.

The Stork of The Hague (1) – On the Big Church

The coat of arms of the City The Hague contains a stork, for ages already.

Two weeks ago, for the first time, I met several participants of Opûh Koffie (Open Coffee), an unstructured group of The Hague loving Hagenaars and Hagenezen (i.e. citizens of the Hague …. the difference of the two terms will be explained in due course) who come together at Aan de Overkant (Opposite or At The Other Side in English) each Wednesday morning at 9.00 hr AM, Just to drink a coffee with each other, to chat and sometimes to make photos or discuss photography. Today I’m hoping to attend my second Opûh Koffie.

After that Opûh Koffie one of the participants, Stork Frans, gave us a sneak preview of his “The Hague Stork Walk”. A wander route with a map and descriptions that shows you various storks on and around buildings in The Hague. Frans has put it together to insert in a photo book he is producing from his collection of over 800 photos of storks. He hopes to publish this book in October 2010.

While we were wandering around I’ve shot a couple of stork photos. I will share some with you here. The first is the stork on top of the Big Church which I didn’t know was there until Stork Frans pointed me to it at the start of his Stork Walk.

Vapiano, for a quick bite

Vapiano's

Vapiano is a self-service Italian restaurant for those looking to not spend that much but still feel like they are dining out. When you walk in you are handed a swipe-card and the first thing to do is find a spot to sit and claim it. Busy nights are usually Thursday, Friday & Saturday so be aware that it might not be easy to find a spot, especially if you are with a group.

The menu is pretty basic with pizzas, pastas, some small side dishes and desserts. Everything has to be ordered at the counter and is added to your card. The atmosphere is pretty laid back, making it an ideal place to go with kids. All cards are scanned before you leave so make sure you don’t lose your swipe-card otherwise you pay a fine (more than a meal & drinks would cost).

Location: Buitenhof 45 -51
Image credit: gertys