De Hallen: food, shops, galleries, movies, hotel
One of the most interesting ways to get to know the local food is visiting food markets and street fairs: a tip that would seem obvious, if it was not for the conceptual change that these types of food centers have been going through. In the past, a local street market used to say a lot about gastronomic habits and behaviors from a specific region. Today, tourists and locals want to see and do more. In other words, in one single environment, these places began to incorporate, besides food and drinks, music, galleries, showrooms and shops. In some cases, like the Food Hallen, there is a history dating from last century behind the concept.
The place that brought to life the De Hallen complex, in 2015, where the Food Hallen is, used to be an old freight train depot that had been closed for a long time. It is easy to see on the floor the old tracks where the trains rode on. This trend of occupation and transformation that preserves parts of its original architecture is very strong in large cities, especially historic ones.
Food Hallen, in turn, is a place that aims to offer items from the Dutch tradition – such as cheese and bitterballen – a Dutch meat-based snack - but also offers other items to please different tastes – from hamburgers to tapas, not to mention, obviously, a good bar dedicated to the famous gin fever. It is even nicer to walk around the De Hallen complex, one of the coolest and most pleasant places in Amsterdam, where you can find a movie theater, hotel, hairdresser, library, shop to restore bikes, among other businesses that have been transforming and offering an original and cool touch to the Western part of the city.