Location and History
The West area of Amsterdam combines the districts of ”Oud-West”, “De Baarsjes”, ”Westerpark” and “Bos en Lommer”. From Oud-West’s leafy, rapidly gentrifying streets to De Baarsjes and Bos en Lommer’s up-and-coming corners and not-quite-rough-anymore edges. The area combines busy urban life with idyllic corner cafés; home to some 178 nationalities at the last official count. The area was developed in the late 20th century as urban expansion to make room for mostly working-class families. Between 1920 and 1940 they built typical “Amsterdam School Style Architecture” apartments in the areas around Surinameplein and Mercatorplein.
Diverse, densely populated and central, West has become a very popular neighborhood for the upwardly mobile. You’ll fall in love with the intimate and inviting spirit of the neighborhood. Quiet, residential areas alternate with bustling shopping streets. You’ll find street markets as well as elegant mansions, upmarket furniture shops, underground cultural centers and plenty of cafés, often with great terraces.
On the Ten Katestraat locals buy their bread, fruit and fresh products on this market. Indoors, the “Foodhallen” features anything and everything else you can think of to eat and drink. Bring your appetite, a large list, and many large shopping bags. Don’t forget to bring your friends along to help you carry all the goodness home.
Increasing property prices has indeed attracted more upwardly professional families and singles in recent years. The area has become hugely popular with expats, especially those looking to start a family. Numerous child-friendly cafés, activities and children’s clothes and toy shops bear witness to the fact. The buildings are mostly four-floor row housing split into apartments. Here, you will find reasonably prized apartments for diverse budgets.