After undergoing extensive renovations and restoration (at a cost of 80 million euro), the palace is ready again for state banquets, the accommodation of (foreign) guests, official acts and... open to the general public. [Story: De Telegraaf (Dutch).]
Today HM The Queen and Princess Margriet opened the newly restored Royal Palace on Dam Square, Amsterdam. Here's a video.
The renovations brought back the French Empire Style, from the time when Louis Napolean Bonaparte was King of Holland. Senior restoration architect Krijn van den Ende: "The palace... will always symbolize the ultimate Seventeenth century classicism ánd the grand Empire style with which the history of the building as a royal palace started."
Restoration artisans have recovered antique furnitures, marble fireplaces and paintings. Several carpets and nearly a thousand historical pieces were refurbished and re-upholstered. (For my tastes, the carpets on the marble floors makes it too cosy Victorian, but I'll have to see for myself next visit to A'dam.)
In many rooms, the original chandeliers have been brought back. The kitchens were modernized for preparation of large dinners and banquets for more than 300 guests. (There are fifty toilets and a few dozen bathrooms added for guests and senior staff aparments.)
Preparations are being made to clean the exterior of the palace, the first time since it was built 350 years ago.
"So keep fightin' for freedom and justice, beloveds, but don't you forget to have fun doin' it. Lord, let your laughter ring forth. Be outrageous, ridicule the fraidy-cats, rejoice in all the oddities that freedom can produce. And when you get through kickin' ass and celebratin' the sheer joy of a good fight, be sure to tell those who come after how much fun it was." - Molly Ivins 1944-2007
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... I blog from BURLINGTON, VERMONT. I'm a hustler about civic engagement & social action and I'll make publicity against a world that degrades and shames whatever way I can. Joy!