Thursday, November 12, 2009
So I just thought I might do a little post on my trip to Amsterdam last weekend..I am literally the luckiest girl ever to be brought away like that despite being a part time employed recessionista..
I have to say it was the most beautiful city, I was totally surprised as I had no expectations of it whatsoever - I was expecting vomiting stag parties and seedy bars, but that was confined to a small area and still wasn't as bad as Temple Bar!
The whole city had such a relaxed, laid back vibe, mellow and chilled with the sound of the canal water lapping and the bicycle bells ringing across the bridges.
We walked and walked and ate and ate, soaking up the pre-Christmas atmosphere, wandering through the Christmas market, admiring the twinkling street lights and festive outdoor ice-skating rink.
Style wise the fashion seems to be a mix of trendy and practical - you won't see too many women in heels considering the main mode of transport is cycling. It was cold and I spent most of the weekend in brogues and a woolly hat I bought there in H and M. Something I noticed which I also thought about people in Paris and Milan, is that they really embrace the winter. The cold didn't have a biting breeze like Ireland but still it was frosty - yet everyone continues to socialise outside, sitting under heatlamps in front of cafes and bars, walking the streets, cycling, shopping and people spotting, all cosily clad in on-trend coats, chunky knitwear and fashionable yet durable boots, all accessorised with stylish shades for the winter glare.
Many Irish tend to still shiver their way through the winter months in less than warm coats and hoodies, the boys especially. But I'm really feeling that winter can be the most romantic time and Amsterdam confirmed that for me..it's made me want to invest in more coats and boots for my wardrobe at home, considering I spend a lot of time either walking around town or braving the elements with my smoking friends, if you dress for the cold there's no reason it should be a bad thing!
The hight street in Amsterdam was impressive too, usually in other European cities I have found a lot of the fashion is confined to boutiques and markets. Amsterdam offered great vintage and boutiques as well and we found some lovely trinket and book shops in the Jordaan district. Our hotel was also located right next to the designer district, similar to Rodeo drive it was a mile long of the ultimate designer offerings from Prada to Mulberry, Burberry, Gucci, Vuitton with slightly cheaper shops such as Karen Millen and Tods nestled in between. The high street was a long cobbled meander of shops including River Island, Zara, Warehouse, H and M, Vero Moda along with a huge variety of shoe shops, particulary local shoe boutiques offering a massive array of boots. Boots are everywhere, more so then here!
Of course I had to settle with browsing but I did buy a few Christmas decorations along with a new hat and gloves! all in all a wonderful city and definitely worth a visit.....It's got me thinking abou the cities I've been to thoughout my life. I still reckon San Francisco is my favourite but because I spent four months there I got to see it in a different light. I loved Sydney and of course New York, London and Paris are unique. But I definitely put Amsterdam ahead of Milan, Barcelona and Melbourne. I'm smitten.