There’s no city as beautiful as Amsterdam. Even the outskirts of the city are better looking than in other countries. What I find really cool is that the city is so small. You can walk everywhere, it’s almost like a museum. Everyday, I walk home along the Keizers canal and everyday again I acknowledge its beauty.
“During a holiday in the South of France ten years ago, my girlfriend ran away with one of my best friends. Broken hearted I returned to Amsterdam and was walking around purposeless around the Waterlooplein, where I lived at the time. In that condition, I bumped into an old operation lamp. I took the thing home and unleashed all my frustrations in working the object. That’s how my first series of lamps originated.”
Starting and running a club is a challenge. The moment I started this project, I had a bag of experience in the hospitality industry and I was co-owner of my own Bar Swych. But running a bar is a whole different story. My alarm went off at 11 in the morning, then I’d go for a croissant and a coffee and after that I opened my doors and guests would start coming in.
Esmée: ‘My mom grew up in Amsterdam, amongts the hookers in the Redlight District. When she was eighteen, she got married and left for London with her husband, because her parents wanted to move to another part of Holland and she didn’t want to come with them. After London, she wanted to return to Amsterdam, but for my father she moved to an eastern part of Holland. That’s where I grew up.
Let Them Call Me Names
I’m from the North of Holland and from an early age on I started to develop in a different way than other people from my age around there. I dressed and acted peculiar. Others confronted me with my – in their eyes – odd behaviour. In the end, you find douchebags everywhere, but I do notice that people from Amsterdam can handle a lot more. This is a beautiful, tolerant city that makes me feel I’m home.