Meet in Am­s­ter­dam

New ho­tels and cul­tural at­trac­tions have made Am­s­ter­dam a com­pelling op­tion for events

Business Traveler (USA) - - INSIDE -

This is an im­por­tant year for Am­s­ter­dam. Not only is the Dutch cap­i­tal cel­e­brat­ing a num­ber of an­niver­saries – its world-fa­mous canal ring, named a UNESCO World Her­itage site in 2010, is 400 years old, and in­sti­tu­tions such as the Con­cert­ge­bouw mu­sic hall, the Felix Mer­i­tus art and sci­ence center and the Ar­tis Royal Zoo are cel­e­brat­ing big birth­days – but 2013 has also seen the re­launch of some of its most cel­e­brated world-class mu­se­ums.

In April, the mighty Ri­jksmu­seum re­opened af­ter a ten-year ren­o­va­tion, while the Van Gogh Mu­seum – it­self 40 years old this year – fol­lowed in May af­ter its own re­vamp. Not only that, but the same month saw huge cel­e­bra­tions in Am­s­ter­dam and across the Nether­lands as Queen Beatrix ab­di­cated the throne to her son, WillemAlexan­der, age 46, and also born in April.

So it’s per­haps fair to say there is a feel­ing of re­newal in the air – but that’s not the only rea­son why now is a good time to con­sider Am­s­ter­dam for your events. The past cou­ple of years have seen the city add to its top-end ho­tel haul with the open­ing of prop­er­ties such as the An­daz and the Con­ser­va­to­rium, while new venues in­clude the strik­ing Eye Film Mu­seum and the re­vamped Het Scheep­vaart­mu­seum. The Sof­i­tel Leg­end the Grand, home to 15,000 square feet of meet­ing space, was fully re­fur­bished two years ago, while Wal­dorf As­to­ria and Hy­att Re­gency prop­er­ties are due to ar­rive next spring and in 2015 re­spec­tively.

Add to that a well-con­nected air­port, in Schiphol, good Euro­pean rail links and im­pres­sive in­fra­struc­ture – not to men­tion the beau­ti­ful his­toric city center, rich cul­tural of­fer­ing and laid back vibe – and it’s un­sur­pris­ing that it is a top-ten In­ter­na­tional Congress and Con­ven­tion As­so­ci­a­tion city. Here are some won­der­ful venues to con­sider.

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From left: An­daz; the Dy­lan’s “Muze” boat; Dou­bletree

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