Last may I had the privilege of going to four European countries and one of them was The Netherlands! While in Amsterdam, my sister, friend and I decided we would go on a tour ride on the canals and while we were being super touristy we learned a few things that I would like to share with you guys 🙂
1. Most of Amsterdam’s canal houses were built with gables and facades (top of the buildings) during the city’s golden age (16th and 17th centuries). Each house on the Canal Ring has a unique gable distinguishing one house from another. The style of gable determines how old the building is and was used to identify one home from another before the numbering system was introduced in 1975.
2. These homes were built on top of swamp like land so the buildings are supported by wooden stilts. However, just from walking around in Amsterdam you can notice how some of the buildings have started to sink into the ground and tilt over the years due to water damage.
3. Because of how narrow the buildings are it’s not possible to fit large furniture or goods through the doors. Consequently, they use pulleys and hooks to carry the items up and through the large windows, making moving in and out of these houses a difficult yet interesting process.
Madrid, Spain you should definitely check out Palacio de Cristal! This majestical landmark was built in 1887 and is mostly made out of glass and metal. It was originally a greenhouse as it is located in Buen Retiro Park, but it is now used to display art for tourism purposes. The palace was designed by architect Ricardo Velázquez Bosco who also had a part in restoring the famous Alhambra and Mezquita landmarks in Southern Spain! Interestingly enough it was modelled after London’s Crystal Palace, which unfortunately was destroyed by fire in 1936. If you love nature, art, history and beautiful architecture this palace is definitely a must see!
Address: Paseo República de Cuba, 4, 28009 Madrid, Spain
Everyone that knows me really well knows that I love history. Especially historical architecture. I love a city or town that looks like a contemporary version of what it was a hundred years ago. A place where you can feel, smell, touch and see years and years of hard earned history and culture. A place where buildings weren’t built for the sake of building but for the purpose of communal expression; to leave a mark, so the world knows that this society, filled with a rich identity, was here. Florence Italy is one of those places for me. Although I’ve never been, it’s definitely on the top of my list of places I want to see and experience for myself. What historical city do you want to travel to?
Historical Fact: In 1339, Florence became the first city in Europe with paved streets.
I love the contrast of colours from the two homes. The emerald green paired with the old bricks and the yellow hues next to the rustic red door. I love how nature plays a big role in making the architecture come alive. The differences, such as the modern rectangular shapes on the left and precisely placed waves on the right, add to the creative genius as well. I feel like each home has a shining personality and that there should be some kind of survey for potential home owners just to make sure they match them. This is the type of home that I picture when my best friend and I talk about living right next door to each other. Perfectly, imperfect and simply creative.