Even if it didn’t reach the breadth and scope of the Louvre, the reborn Rijksmuseum could easily match it in caché – there were enough impressive works coupled with the revived historic interiors to somewhat justify the €15 entry fee. Though it is food for thought considering the more substantial Louvre only charges €11, and even free on the first Sunday of each month. That’s Amsterdam for you. And speaking of food, the restaurant prices proved jaw-dropping – to some visiting Americans friends at least. For three slices of pie, five coffees, and two sodas, the damage reached €50. It surely must have been the juiced-up ambience we were paying for. Either that or they’re trying to slowly recoup their half a billion dollar investment one meal at a time.
One of the rooms that got me wide-eyed also seemed to come out from nowhere. From one of the exhibit rooms, a heavy glass door opened out to a balcony that overlooked a three story reading room. It turned out to be the largest art history library in the country. Indiana Jones would’ve fit in quite nicely. In this internet age though, I can’t imagine that these books wouldn’t be digitized to save time and space but it was amazing to look at though.
It’s moments like this when I wish I had a better camera. The pictures I took just didn’t do it justice.
So glad that after a very long time, after considerable delays and expense, the Rijks was finally done, in a sense finally completing the city in which it was an integral part of. She’s back with a vengeance, cleaned up and with more than a fresh coat of paint, ready to show off her extremely subtle make-over. So glad that I was still here while she did.