Stage 2 were given a choice of excursions this year to either Rome or Amsterdam. We chose to visit Amsterdam and although the group was smaller, we found the visit an amazing experience.
The Meininger hotel was incredibly good value and offered a continental breakfast each morning and for a hotel the most amazing shower! The rooms were comfortable and modern, and the staff were helpful and friendly.
The transport system in Amsterdam is extremely good value and we took full advantage, we purchased a GVB Card for €21 which lasted us the whole trip. We could travel by tram, bus or the metro system. During our stay we also walked a lot (an awful lot) and tried to avoid the cyclists who always have the right of way!!
The first day we toured the central Stock exchange and the older parts of the town. During the next few days we toured a mixture of contemporary buildings types including The Eye, a film museum and several art galleries. Amsterdam offers an eclectic collection of architecture both modern and old which is nestled together and makes for a very interesting city. The many canals and rivers offer interesting views and the opportunity for boat and ferry rides.
Of an evening many of us toured the town in search of restaurants and shops, there is a mix of cuisines available from traditional Dutch (don’t miss out on the opportunity to try the local cheese or waffles) to Argentinian, Chinese and Italian. Amsterdam has a certain reputation as a tourist destination but offers so much more especially to architecture students. An exhilarating and inspirational city.
The residential buildings were definitely a motivation and provided great precedents for our current module Collective dwelling.
Luciano Cardellicchio and Chris Gardner accompanied us on the visit and made great tour guides, they were not only entertaining but also informative. We found this trip to be very educational yet enjoyable and being a small group meant we got a lot out of it.
By Paula Priest and Natasha Paul
BA (Hons) Architecture Stage 2