What makes you feel at home in a city? At the moment I’m in a period of transition myself and this questions keeps popping up in my personal reflections. For me it’s not specifically my house but definitely my neighbours, and I need to have enough inspiring ‘third places’ around. Places that are not home or work where you feel like you’re part of a bigger community.
One of those places that we discovered last week in Amsterdam Oud-West is called “De Hallen” (The Halls). It’s a really cool mix of a food-court, cinema, library, coffee-shop and some artsy workshops combined in an former tram depot: “Tram depot the Halls is a national monument and has historically been a closed enclave in the late nineteenth-century expansion of Amsterdam. The Halls is a traditional, functionalistic complex build for the maintenance of the first electric trams around 1900.”
The building was in a deplorable state when we left Amsterdam 3.5 years ago. But now it’s a super lively place. I really like how they transformed this heritage building in public space that works. Especially the Food-concept: we’ve been back twice already! De Foodhallen is inspired by ‘indoor food markets’ from different metropolitan cities (like Hong Kong:)). You can enjoy a large variety of delicious bites and drinks from different stalls in an industrial-like setting.