AMSTERDAMN!!! • May 2016

{ Amsterdam // Champagne at Shannon's }

{ Amsterdam // Champagne at Shannon's }
{ Amsterdam // Champagne at Shannon's }
amsterdam-canals-3
{ Amsterdam // Champagne at Shannon's }
{ Amsterdam // Champagne at Shannon's }

I’m still on Cloud 9 from Amsterdam.

This all kind of just happened… my boyfriend had some business, I had the time so we figured why not.

And I am so, so, so glad it happened.

For starters, it was a week before my 30th birthday {which is this weekend!}, so it was the perfect way to spend the end of this wild decade. Amsterdam has also been on my radar for a very, very long time.

And it should be on yours too.

Whenever I was asked “where is the place I am dying to go?”, the answer was always Amsterdam.

And it was everything I ever dreamed of.

{ Amsterdam // Champagne at Shannon's }

Amsterdam is BEAUTIFUL. Seriously. The architecture is incredible, and it is built along canals – which also made it a very walking friendly city. Other than to/from the airport, we didn’t need any transportation, but a friend of mine told me to get the Amsterdam City Card if need be. Since our trip was so short, we didn’t need it but will def get it next time!

Not only is the city beautiful, but the food & beverage scene was the best I have ever seen.

Imagine a city very heavily saturated with restaurants and bars… but don’t stop there! These restaurants and bars… now imagine them having so much charm, the coolest aesthetic, top notch lists, fantastic beers, crazy good wines, and damn fine food.

We didn’t even bother with reservations anywhere because the options were endless and all ideas where a good idea.

Speaking of aesthetic….

Everything about Amsterdam was my aesthetic. I know I touched on the architecture and, of course, restaurants – but also all the shops, store-fronts, VIBES.

The coffee shops {wink wink nudge nudge} were beyond cool. The fashion was incredible, and I found a bit Scandinavian inspiried. The shop displays were beyond cool – & I especially thought some of the seed shop fronts were just so cool.

I also love that there is really no stigma for anything there. I am all about that.

The hotel we stayed in, the Amsterdam Sofitel, was BEAUTIFUL.

Everything about it was perfect.

{ Amsterdam // Champagne at Shannon's }
{ Amsterdam // Champagne at Shannon's }
{ Amsterdam // Champagne at Shannon's }
{ Amsterdam // Champagne at Shannon's }
{ Amsterdam // Champagne at Shannon's }

Seriously stunning. A charming exterior, and inside was full of marble, stained glass, and awesome sculptures. We did not dine or drink there, but the restaurant has a Michelin star and they have a sick cigar lounge.

Even better though, in the room, they greeted you with a bag of the best thing ever – STROOPWAFELS.

omg I had to have had ten of them…

Now as of what we did… so we are crazy. I got to Amsterdam on Thursday afternoon, my boyfriend Thursday evening via Zurich – & we left on Saturday so we could have all day on Sunday to adjust. Soooo that is my very long way of saying we really only had Friday there.

On Thursday, as soon as my boyfriend got in, we hit the town.

We walked around the city & did some sightseeing. We did dinner at Cannibale Royale which was phenomenal though I did not take any photos there.

Friday, he did some work and I slept in a bit. We grabbed lunch at a place he has been raving about since he first went to Amsterdam called The Seafood Bar – & now I am totally on that raving bandwagon. This was probably THEEEEEE best seafood restaurant I have ever been to.

{ Amsterdam // Champagne at Shannon's }
{ Amsterdam // Champagne at Shannon's }
{ Amsterdam // Champagne at Shannon's }
{ Amsterdam // Champagne at Shannon's }
{ Amsterdam // Champagne at Shannon's }

The restaurant itself looked like Patrick Bateman’s apartment. Think VERY minimalistic, lots of white space, way symmetrical, & sharp lines.

In it, they have on display their seafood market. Think the daily catch of lobsters, sea bass, shellfish, salmon… the list goes on. Many of the fish, local.

We ordered the combination platter which was a mix of the fruits de mer platter (all time favourite) & the grilled platter (think grilled salmon, oysters, mussels, etc). This double decker platter was perfect for the two of us… not to mention that it was served with some of the best fries I ever had. I had a glass of Gruner Veltliner & my boyfriend had a Heinekin. Another thing to note about the wine is that they served the reds chilled to complement the fish!

{ Amsterdam // Champagne at Shannon's }
{ Amsterdam // Champagne at Shannon's }
{ Amsterdam // Champagne at Shannon's }
{ Amsterdam // Champagne at Shannon's }

Afterwards, we walked over to the Rijksmuseum – but that walk alone was full of PLENTY of distractions! Think shopping at Rika Studios & a book market where we picked up some new art. Think a Farmer’s Market but instead of produce, it was books and art.

With our wallets lighter, we ended up at the Rijksmuseum which was phenomenal. Seriously, so cool. We spent about 3-4 hours here. If you find yourself in Amsterdam, I highly recommend going. You will see some of the most classic art in the world. They also had an awesome boat & weaponry exhibit, which we loved. I also loved seeing the evolution of humanity through art. They have works from the Medieval times until the early 1900’s.

Afterwards, we walked through a garden in hunt of tulips (with no luck!), did some more shopping, and hit a few more bars.

{ Amsterdam // Champagne at Shannon's }
{ Amsterdam // Champagne at Shannon's }
{ Selfies at The Seafood Bar }

I was starting to get really, really hangry bc I’m annoying so we popped into an Australian-themed bar that I could not even begin to tell you the name of where we had some bombbbbb nachos that I will def try to recreate. They were seasoned like Doritos and we finished the whole thing. Finished off with some beers and white russians and headed over to another bar….

so we go this Amstel bar, and have no idea what to drink… not to mention, we are some of the only ones there – it was an odd hour – and we are just stumped. Welllll lo & behold, there was a  WHEEL of drinks and whatever it landed on was 10 Euros. Trust me, not all were good (think 5 Smirnoff Ices, 10 rainbow shots, 1 beer, etc)… but lucky for us, we landed the five Amstel beers. Phew!

{ Amsterdam // Champagne at Shannon's }

{ Amsterdam // Champagne at Shannon's }amsterdam-rijkemuseum-3

We finished them up, and it was getting to be 9:00 PM so we headed back to the hotel to get some work done before the evening. At around 10:30 PM, we hit the town again.

I really wanted to see the Red Light District, so we walked through that. It is def worth seeing, but it is VERY crowded. A little too much for my liking. I was hoping to see a ton of cheeky, dirty neon lights. There were a few, but not as much as I imagined. All that said, it is unlike anything I have ever seen.

We finished the rest of the night walking around Amsterdam, checking out the bars, the coffee shops and finding dinner. By now, it’s pretty late, think 2:00 AM, and we are STARVING (common theme with me). Not even going to lie, but we spent a LOT of the time from 11:00 PM – 2:00 AM just wandering trying to find something to eat. Between my boyfriend and I, we would make excuses on whatever we found and would continue looking. It became a never ending cycle and so we hopped into a burger joint called BURGER BAR for some Waygu burgers & fries – they are open until 4a!

Dessert was necessary too, so we jumped in the dessert shop next door (so sorry, no idea the name – I’m literally the worst) for a MAJOR necessity – an Amsterdam waffle. THINK THE BEST DONUT YOU’VE EVER HAD… but in waffle form. They are warm, fluffy, sweet, and just perfect. We got ours with vanilla & strawberry icing and topped more with sprinkles.

{ Amsterdam // Champagne at Shannon's }{ Amsterdam // Champagne at Shannon's }

We got back to the hotel room at around 4:00 AM…. with our flight at 11:00 AM. It happens.

So we took a power nap, saving the sleep for the long flight home. The trip happened so fast and I did not take many pictures. Between not remembering the names to the places to not taking a lot of pictures, I am seriously the worst blogger ever, but to be very transparent, I wanted to really spend the time with my boyfriend in a city I was dying to be at than be tied to my phone (it’s a terrible habit of mine, and in this day & age, it is getting even worse).

That said, the only cons of this trip was not getting enough pictures, not having enough times, not seeing the tulips, and per usu, being away from my cat.

{ Amsterdam // Champagne at Shannon's }Sephora-Wide-Eye-Shannon-Silver-4

Sooooo that was my weekend! I hope everyone had a great one.

Where’s your favourite place on Earth?

Tokyo is mine but Amsterdam is a close second. They are the two places I’ve been, that as soon as I went there, I felt at home & at peace.

If you’ve been to Amsterdam, what do you love to do there??

Talk soon,

Shannon

x

Leave a Comment

15 Comments

  1. 5.23.16

    I absolutely loved Amsterdam as well… we were only there for a couple of days but did our best to do things that are really only an option in Amsterdam, like checking out a live sex show perhaps? YA… it was weird!!! But overall, such an awesome place. I think I need to go back JUST for that seafood! Ah, it’s making me so hungry!!!

    Good luck with the new job today!

    • 5.25.16

      Thank you, Jen! OMG yes I LOVED it there. omg the sex show, I’m soon intrigued – what all went on? They had LONG long long lines, it was crazy but I’m all about embracing the weird 😉 YES go to Seafood Bar, you won’t be disappointed. Nothing beats a good Fruits de Mer platter! xx

      • 5.27.16

        You know how it doesn’t matter how exciting your job is… it’s still a job? And how you get bored of doing the same thing over and over? Yep, that was definitely the case for the “actors” in the sex show.
        It was the strangest experience… it was in a really tiny theatre with seats all around the stage. And a bar in the back (of course). I won’t get into too many details, but I’m sure you can imagine it haha.

        When in Rome, right?

  2. 5.23.16

    Beautiful photos! Looks like you had a great time!

    LEACH | theleachlife.com

    • 5.24.16

      Thanks, Leach – appreciate the love! Can’t wait to go back xx

  3. 5.25.16

    Tamara – thank you so much for reading. Yes, you HAVE to go, trust me you will NOT be disappointed. One day was NOT enough. It is props my new favorite city 😉 And thank you for the birthday love!! xx

  4. 5.27.16
    Rachael Dickinson said:

    These photos look incredible. I went to Amsterdam and I don’t think I had the best experience which has put me off returning – although now I am definitely rethinking!! Good Luck!

    Rachael xox

    http://www.gatsbyandglamour.blogspot.co.uk/

    • 6.1.16

      Thank you so much for the sweet comment, Rachael! If you go back, you HAVE to go to the Seafood Bar (if you like shellfish) – that restaurant alone was worth the trip! x Shannon