Ah, Amsterdam. You stole our hearts away with your cobble-stoned streets, boat-filled canals and crooked houses. You are a city of contradictions and so your best shops sometimes are hidden in plain sight. While many tourists end up exploring the Kalverstraat (Amsterdam’s shopping street filled with many world-known chain stores), you absolutely can’t miss the most memorable and unique Amsterdam shops that are scattered across town. So in this 3-part blog series, I will be sharing the most interesting shops with you!
Add these unique Amsterdam shops to your to-do list:
1. De Posthumuswinkel
In business since 1865, this incredibly atmospheric store will take care of all your stationery needs. Head here to enjoy one of the oldest Amsterdam shops, filled to the brim with handcrafted goods that will lighten your wallet and brighten your day.
De Posthumus offers personalized stamps, letterheads, and envelopes with monograms. For those of you who are into your hobbies, replenish your scrapbooking supplies and choose rubber stamps from an amazing collection of quotes and images, pick up a quill and a calligraphy set and choose luxe quality notebooks.
In 1920 De Posthumus joined the Court supplier’s board of Queen Wilhelmina. Approved by the royal family it certainly is worth your time.
Where: St. Luciënsteeg 23-25, 1012 PM Amsterdam
When: Tuesday – Friday from 10:00 to 17:30, Saturday from 11:00 to 17:30.
In close proximity to The Red Light District, the Condomerie is one of those unique Amsterdam shops that you can’t just walk past without at least sparing it a glance. Its’ colorful vitrines gather many spectators and tourists. While the goods may not be that special, if your idea of Amsterdam fun is, well… FUN, then do yourself a favor and stop by. With its’ giant selection of condoms, it will surely offer interesting souvenirs and at least a picture. So jump in to admire the crazy window display and get your friends a little memento from Amsterdam that would be in line with the carefree spirit of the Red Light District.
Where: Warmoesstraat 141, 1012 JB Amsterdam
When: Monday from 11:00 to 21:00, Tuesday from 11:00 to 18:00, Wednesday – Saturday from 11:00 to 21:00, Sunday from 13:00 to 18:00.
3. P.G.C. Hajenius
Established in 1826 in the very center 3 minutes away from Dam square, P.G.C. Hajenius offers a wide range of tobacco from all over the world, including their own personal cigar brand. During its long history the store catered to the traders coming in and out of the city as well as to royalty all around Europe. P.G.C. Hajenius is also a part of the court supplier list, earning the loyalty of tobacco lovers from all over Europe for the variety and quality they offer. Aside from that, the store also hosts Cigar Smoking Tournaments and tastings.
Do not deny yourself the pleasure of visiting this store even if you’re not a smoker. The store is also known for its’ beautiful art deco interior which will make you feel like you stepped into a gentleman’s club. This atmosphere has reminded me of Mycroft Holmes’ favorite club and if that’s not a recommendation, then I don’t know what is!
Where: Rokin 96, 1012 KZ Amsterdam
When: Monday from 12:00 to 18:00, Tuesday – Saturday from 9:30 to 18:00, Sunday from 12:00 to 17:00.
4. The American Book Center
The ABC is a 3-floor bookstore filled to the brim with English-only books, magazines, art catalogs and more. You will likely come across it yourself as it’s right on Spui square. This square is right next to the huge shopping street Kalverstraat so head here to enjoy a bit of calm and quiet time. After you’re done perusing books, check out the multiple cafes surrounding the area. If in doubt, check out the Esprit cafe next to the store, it’s really cute and a crowd favorite.
To be completely honest, I am a frequent visitor here! I hop in every couple of weeks to inspect the newest additions and features. The staff recommendations in this store are on point. The selection is great and always features the newest releases as well as hidden gems you definitely did not hear about. While the first floor is dedicated to art, fashion and design, the second one (my personal favorite) has a huge Fantasy, Crime, YA and Historical Fiction section. The third floor is home to a huge Fiction section as well as books on Business, Personal Development and more. And the magazine area on the first floor is so welcoming that no one will stop you from perusing the books for ages and even reading them right there and then.
Where: Spui 12, 1012 XA Amsterdam
When: Monday from 12:00 to 20:00, Tuesday – Saturday from 10:00 to 20:00, Sunday from 11:00 to 18:30.
5. Het is Liefde | Wed and Walk
If you’re visiting Amsterdam with your special someone definitely do not miss this shop. You will find that this party and wedding-themed store is one of the quirkiest shops Amsterdam has to offer. But, cuteness alert, it actually has a pop-up wedding chapel hidden in the back! By appointment only, these guys will organize a small personalized ceremony and take a picture to commemorate the occasion.
If you’ve always wanted to wear an over the top dress like in that episode of Friends where Monika, Rachel and Phoebe eat popcorn in their wedding dresses, then this is going to be an absolute blast.The best thing about this? It’s not legally binding so the magic works just till next morning. You can choose from a variety of wedding dresses and tuxedos – from puffy princess dresses to top hats. And if you’re traveling with kids, they’ll have a time of their lives! The ceremony costs 75 euro and must be booked in advance here but they also do their best to accommodate impromptu requests, so this could be your lucky day. So adorable.
Where: 1e van der Helststraat 13, 1073 AB Amsterdam
When: Shop is open Wednesday – Friday from 11:00 to 18:00, Saturday 11:00 to 17:00 // Weddings by appointment only
Which Amsterdam shops are on your to-visit list? And which ones you absolutely cannot miss? Let me know in the comments below!
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