Friday, 3 February 2012

My A-Z of The Netherlands: A is for Almere

(about My A-Z challenge)

A is for Almere, of course. The city I chose to live in The Netherlands, I was still in Portugal.

Almere is the youngest city of The Netherlands. Situated in Flevoland, the most recent province of the country, its first house was finished in 1976. Named after the early medieval name of the Zuiderzee, this garden-city is now the 7th largest municipality in The Netherlands with 191,495 citizens (9 May 2011). Almere offers contemporary architecture, several parks, woods and lakes, an exciting cultural environment and a relaxing and balanced life. Annemarie Jorristma-Lebbink, a former minister, has been the mayor of the city since 16 August 2003. Her party (VVD) is the same one of the current prime-minister, Mark Rutte.

Almere is Contemporary Architecture...

Almere Centrum (where we lived in the first two years)

From Almere (III)

Tussen de Vaarten (our current neighbourhood)

Two Face, by the Dutch NIO Architecten.

From A-Z

The New City Center

The Citadel (2006)

A shopping complex by the French architect Christian de Portzamparc.
A complex of 100 to 100 metres which is divided into four quadrants by two intersecting streets (for pedestrians). Above the car parks there are 50 shops. On top of the shops there are 46 colourful houses, and an apartment complex including 6 apartments and a parking lot for its residents. The terrace of La Place restaurant (on the top floor of warehouse V&D) provides a unique view of the Citadel.

From Almere (III)

From Almere (III)

The Lakeside Tower (2007)

A building in front of the Weerwater Lake, of the architect Bjarne Mastenbroek (SeARCH, Amsterdam).

From Almere (III)

The Smaragd (2007)

 Apartments and a store (Hema) designed by Gigon and Guyer.

From Almere (III)

The Skyline of Almere

 The Wave (2005) by the Dutch architect René van Zuuk.
 A dramatic wave-like facade, covered with silver anodized aluminum plate.

From A-Z

From A-Z

From A-Z

Side by Side (2007)

Two residential towers by the Dutch architect Frits van Dongen.
The towers facades were made of light blue coloured industrial glass. In the base of the towers, there's a winter garden, sauna and gym, especially for the residents. Moreover, there's a private swimming pool (you can see it from the outside), overlooking the lake Weerwater.

From A-Z

Silverline (2001)

An apartment tower designed by the Dutch Claus and Kaan Architects.
The top of this apartment tower surprisingly leans over lake Weerwater. However, the reason for this is simple: because most people like to live at the top or bottom of a tower, the top and foot of 'Silverline' is maximized, while the least interesting middle section is minimized.

From A-Z

Urban Entertainment Center designed by the British architect William Alsop.

Apollo Hotel (2008)

A block of approximately 4,000 m2, which includes the hotel rooms, floats eight metres above street level. It has a beautiful facade of cedar. This section is supported by columns. The entrance to the hotel is a blob with a brass cladding.

From A-Z

Muzinq / Discotheque NOX

A pop centre with three halls, one accommodating 1200 persons.

From A-Z

Almere Buiten

The Eilandenbuurt houses.
They remind us the Dutch Antilles and the maritime history of The Netherlands.

From A-Z

Almere is Cultural Life...

Almere's library (2010)

A building by the Dutch architects Meijer en Van Schooten.
De Nieuwe Bibliotheek was considered the Best Library of The Netherlands in 2010.

From Almere (III)

Theater and Arts Center (2006)

A building by the Japanese architects Kazuyo Sejima and Ryue Nishizawa (SANAA) that was officially opened by Queen Beatrix in 2007. Simplicity, transparency and light is what this building is about. From a single storey surface of 100 to100 metres, three halls (1050, 350 and 150 seats respectively)  extend into the lake Weerwater. The building users are the theater and the arts center, De Kunstlinie, that offers workshops of music, visual arts, theater, literature, dance and multimedia.

From A-Z

The Pasion Buena Vista Show, May, 2009 in Almere's Theater.

From A-Z

Almere's Selexyz Bookstore.
Bookstore of the year 2008-2009.

From A-Z

Almere is Fun...

A lounge in the city center to enjoy the sun.

From Almere (III)

Enjoying Queen's Day in the several terraces of the city center.

From Koninginnedag 2011

Selling old stuff in the streets on Queen's Day. Everybody can do it and it is a fun and nice way to get rid of the stuff we don't need anymore.

From Koninginnedag 2011
The restaurant Boat House in Noorderplassen.
I like to go there specially to watch the sunset.

From A-Z

Stoomboot Rondvaart
A very nice trip in a luxury steamboat.

From Stoomboot Rondvaart Almere Haven 2011

Almere Strand (beach)...

From A-Z

Skating in the Weerwater lake nearby the Theater.

From A-Z

An old!! Muiderzand Marina in Almere :-)

From A-Z
Almere happens...

Midland Classic Show

A fantastic exhibition of old cars...

From A-Z

Smaak Parade

A delicious event. We can taste cheeses, wines, and many delicacies.

From A-Z

From A-Z
Almere Haven Festival

In the oldest part of the city, a brocante en antiek markt.

From A-Z

From A-Z

Historisch Festival Almere

Also in Almere Haven nearby the beach.

From Historisch Festival Almere 2011

Almere is gezellig...

A city where it is a pleasure to live.

From A-Z

From A-Z

From A-Z

Swans in the sidewalks. :-)

From A-Z

Almere is Nature...

The fantastic nature reserve of Oostvaardersplassen.
And if you like to watch birds in particular, this is the ideal place to be.

From Almere (III)

From Oostvaardersplassen

A sunset in Almere Pampus.

From Almere (III)

There is much more to enjoy, like De Kemphaan, The Beatrix Park, and many other wonderful places.
In the video below, you will be able to watch more amazing buildings, woods and nice places in Almere to relax and enjoy with your family and friends.

I hope you have enjoyed this trip to Almere, our adopted city.
Take your train in Schiphol Airport and in 30 minutes you are here. Enjoy your stay!
Have fun! Veel plezier!!

(Source of the information about Almere's architecture:


Castles Crowns and Cottages said...

Good evening Sandra!!!! I NEED TO GO TO YOUR NEW COUNTRY! There is so much history there that I just want to drink up!!! How are you? Anita

Aledys Ver said...

Aplausos, aplausos.... Excellent post, wonderful review of Almere. The Mayor should appoint you Honorary citizen of Almere :) Beautiful photos, I recognise so many of the places bec. of the tours I've taken with you. I like the Wave building. It is indeed a very nice place to live.

PS: Get up, it's snowing!!! :)

Margarida Elias said...

Uma maravilha tudo, desde os lugares às tuas fotografias. Gostei especialmente do edifício the wave. Bjs!

Presépio no Canal said...

Hallo, Anita! :-) I'm doing fine, much happier with the weather now. Today we got a REAL snow day!!! Thank God for the light that brings!!! Everything so whte, so beautiful! This weekend I will send you an email. Mille Bisous!!!

Ebercita! Do you think? :-))) I took so many hours to do this post and still I'm not very happy....There are buildings and places that aren't here. Let see if I will add something else. ;-)) Now, it's time to enjoy this beautiful snow :-)) Besitos!!

Margarida, Obrigada!! :-) O post procura transmitir o meu amor pela cidade. Eu gosto muito de viver aqui. Temos muita qualidade de vida e as casas sao bem mais baratas que em Amsterdao :-)) Olha, hoje voltou a nevar, mas em grande. Este ano, a neve chegou quase com tres meses de atraso. Muitos Beijinhos!!!

restlessjo said...

What a fantastic post and what a fantastic looking place! I especially like The Wave and that leisure centre by the water-they remind me a little of The Sage in Newcastle. Wonderful architecture!
How did you come to live there? Work related I expect?

Presépio no Canal said...

Hi, Jo! Thank you for your so nice comment! You see, I need to complete the post. :-))) Yes, work related. We came in 2007. I need to finish this. I was afraid that the post would be too big. There is so much to share. This evening I will add more information. I also want to do some pics today because I'm not happy with the ones I have about the other buildings in the city. As soon as I can, I will pay you a visit too. :-)
Beijinhos!! :-)

Ana said...

The Wave is my favourite building, it's so whimsical!
Lovely post, Sandra.
There's a blue sky in most of the photos, not something I would associate with the Netherlands ;)

Sara said...

Parabéns pela síntese e pelas escolhas ;).
Acho que escolheste uma cidade que permite uma óptima qualidade de vida e múltiplas possibilidades de descoberta e fruição (e trabalho também, espero :)). Boa opção!
Beijinhos e bom fim de semana (a resistir ao frio, pois claro)

Presépio no Canal said...

I'm always looking for a blue sky ;-))
We were so used to the light of Lisbon (so unique, that's why so many film directors like the city so much), that we need a blue sky here like "pao para a boca". ;-)
However, Dutch sky offers great colours, specially in the Spring and in the Autumn. :-)

Presépio no Canal said...


Almere e uma cidade que vale a pena e que esta em crescimento. Ha muitas empresas e comercio.
No entanto, devido a crise do Euro que atravessa a Uniao Europeia, tem havido cortes de uma forma geral e nota-se um aumento do desemprego.
As areas onde ha mais oportunidades sao as de engenharia informatica, marketing e gestao.

Beijinho e protege-te do frio! Hoje nevou muito por aqui. Ainda vou enriquecer este post com algumas fotos que tirei hoje. :-)

Sami said...

I love the architecture Sandra. What interesting houses, my favourites are "The Wave" and the "Eilandenbuurt houses" by the river. Lovely city to live, modern and with a lot to offer.

Castles Crowns and Cottages said...

Good morning dear friend. THANK YOU FOR VISITING ME! I am late due to a lot of WORK and fatigue! I HAVE GOT TO SEE THAT CROOKED BUILDING! It is so gorgeous! Anita

Presépio no Canal said...

Thank you Sami :-) I finished the post yesterday evening. I went to the city center in the afternoon by "the golden hour" to get better pictures of the Silverline, The Side by Side, the Hotel, The NOX and the Wave. There are other buildings of course, but those ones I never visited before. I need to visit them too. The city is big.
I'm enjoying very much to participate on this challenge.
On a certain way, I 'm reviewing how much I've learned so far about the country. This has been a huge experience. :-))
Have a nice weekend!! xoxo

Patricia Sgrignuoli said...

Hey, Sandra... What beatiful ans interesting is the place where you are living!!!! And the photos are really good... I don´t know what is the challenge, but your entry about Almere is very complete and shows a lot of diferent places and things you can do there. Good luck with the challenge!!!!

Presépio no Canal said...

Hi, Patricia! :-)

Thank you for your visit and comment! I'm always very glad to see you here! :-)
You can read about the challenge here. Would you like to join us too?
It will be fun!

Isabella J said...

Excellent photos & great to read! You've shared about Almere so well :-) I loved shopping in their city centre - And I love the architecture too.