Last week Katie took us on a tour of the best places to eat, drink, socialise, and soak up some creative and cultural inspiration near our New York Studio (read all about it here), and this week we’re visiting Amsterdam. Here’s Djanira to fill you in on some of our favourite places near the Studio…
Morning Djanira! Right, where are we getting coffee before work?
I am not a coffee drinker, I’m a tea lady! When cycling from the train station en route to the Studio, I grab a Green Jasmine tea to-go and a perfect chocolate croissant, freshly baked using organic stone-ground flour, at the Le Pain Quotidien on the Johannes Verhulststraat. The best place for coffee? There’s an abundance of good options in the area so I’d recommend trying them all until you find your personal favourite tailored to your liking.
We’ve had a busy morning, where are we eating lunch?
Lunchroom Wilhelmina on the Eerste Helmersstraat (across from our favourite florist, Arjan), for delectable sandwiches and a variety of soups. My favourite sandwich is the chicken avocado. When I’m feeling famished, I’ll add a small sized tomato soup! We often take our new colleagues out for lunch here to welcome them to DB and introduce them to the Overtoom surrounding area.
I also like ’t Saoto Huisje for the best saoto chicken soup in town! ’t Saoto Huisje is a café that characterises traditional Surinamese cuisine and, for me, it’s the best in terms of authenticity and simplicity. There’s a great take-away menu to “heat and eat for dinner later”, and all within just a 4 minute cycle (or a 10 minute stroll) from the Studio.
And let’s not forget Restaurant Willems for exquisite dishes. It’s a great venue to take clients for lunch or dinner, and to celebrate anniversaries – it’s become a tradition to celebrate my birthday with lunch at Willems. The choice of menu is always a surprise as they change it on a weekly basis. With it’s open kitchen on view to all, diners can satisfy their curiosity and find out what culinary art is being made in the kitchen.
Sounds great! So, where will I find the team after hours?
Definitely Café Parck just across the street from us. This has been our local pub since we moved to the Overtoom in 2007! A night out at the pub usually starts with a round of beers and bitterballen (Dutch meatballs). Parck offers a variety of bitterballen including vegetarian, which are my favourite!
I need a little creative inspiration – where should I go?
I love to walk through the Vondelpark during my lunch break. It’s delightful to see the seasons change in the park and there’s always something new to discover. I genuinely enjoy cycling through the Vondelpark in the early mornings, too, when it is still very quiet. There’s just something so special about being surrounded by nature and it fills me with positive energy to start my day. I also love watching people enjoying the sun in the afternoon, having a drink, playing football or celebrating a birthday picnic in the park. As soon as the sun is shining, we all try to enjoy the park as much as possible!
I’ve heard that there are often treats in the Amsterdam Studio – what’s your favourite place to pick up a treat for the team?
Petit Gâteau, an authentic French pâtisserie. Ideally I would buy a variety of mini tarts and delicious 6cm small cakes, all made by hand in infinitely different flavours and colours. Every cake is a piece of art in itself. I love these so much, I often treat myself to one to take home for the weekend. Well, maybe more than just one! Haha!
Djanira John is the Office Manager of our Amsterdam Studio.
Special thanks to Richard for taking the photos.
If Design Bridge Amsterdam sounds like your kind of a place, check out the latest opportunities to join the team on our Careers page.