Hi, my name is Heleen and I live my (mostly) happy life in Amsterdam with husband Karel and three daughters (18, 16 and 15 years old). I came to his city in 1982 and probably will never leave anymore. I love my city, my house, my family, my friends and many other things. Really Amsterdam, ‘ the biggest village on earth’, offers so many beautiful things. We love to bike down town for coffee, shopping at the organic Noord Market or the so called Nine Streets, strolling in the Vondelpark, going to Paradiso or theatre with our daughters. Many times we feel like tourists in our own town! I was educated as teacher French and Dutch but switched to the fashion industry as there was not enough work in teaching at that time. As a fashion agent I sell woman clothes to shops. As my business becomes more difficult the last year I decided to start a guest room at the first and second floor of our house (see airbnb.com). I love to host people from all over the world. I also love to go hiking in the Alps or reading my books in our beachhut at half an hour from where we live. I love going to cinema especially documentaries and art house films, and: yoga, meeting family and friends.
Hi, my name is Karel, happily married to Heleen. I work as a project manager for art in public space. I am an intermediair between commissioners and visual artists by taking care of the artistic concept, planning, budget, communicatoin, funding and sponsoring etc. I am even a more enthousiatic mountaineer as Heleen is. Every year in springtime I go with some climbing mates to France or Italy for climbing and camping. I love to go out for drinking coffee on my own or with friends. I like to be on the beach in my hammock. I love to buy books (lots of second hand bookstores in Amsterdam), visit designer shops, galleries, museums and parks. I agree with Heleen about being a tourist in my own city. And if (I say 'if') Amsterdam gets boring Utrecht, Leiden, Haarlem, Delft are closeby and so are the beautiful polderlandscapes.
Our three daughters can give you the best advices where to spend your money with shopping. They are working hard at school and dreaming of and saving money for their round-the-world-trip within a few years.