Bed-Ins for Peace: Bed Peace
John Lennon and Yoko Ono on their honeymoon, at the first day of their Bed-In for Peace (Hair Peace Bed Peace) in the Amsterdam Hilton Hotel. March 25, 1969. (Photocredits Eric Koch, Spaarnestad via www.gahetna.nl)
Yesterday (24/2/2016) we attended the, long awaited, opening of the X Bank Store and Gallery in Amsterdam. The X Bank is the store ( or “‘creative incubator’ concept space”) of the fairly new W Amsterdam hotel; The X Bank is situated across the street from the hotel next to the hotel-restaurant The Duchess. The concept store has two entrances; one in the Spuistraat 174, via the gallery and one via The Duchess. This conglomerate of Stag Europe can be found just behind the Dam square, we don’t need to tell you that’s a top AA+ location for any company……. The X Bank got it’s name from the former owner (1915-2013): the Kas Bank, a Dutch bank mainly dealing with pension funds, they moved their offices a couple of streets further. The W Amsterdam also added 66 rooms, a spa, a nightclub and a pool to the building. Anyways…..the building is precious; it’s a national monument designed, in 1908, by F.W.M. Poggenbeek. It’s re-designed by Office Winhov, restored by Hoek architectuur & restauratie, the interior is designed by BK architecture.
Okay back to the X Bank; this large store is filled to the rim (literally; don’t forget to check out the ceiling as well) with Dutch fashion, design and art. That’s the fun part of the concept; all products are made by Dutchmen/women; on stock are 180 brands, established ones like Philips, Moooi, SuperTrash and Viktor & Rolf next to lesser known, smaller brands like By Brown (rain dresses), Eijk-Amsterdam (shoes) and Mimi Berlin (yes, us!). Products range from fashion to bicycles to alcohol, teapots, underwear, cupboards, face massagers, books, art, vases, cushions and much much more (but no liquorice..or maybe we just didn’t see that?) Since the shop carries 180 brands you can probably wander around at the X Bank for hours. Come to think of it; you can spend a complete day, if you break for lunch at The Duchess. Open from 10:00 AM to 10:00 PM. Spuistraat 174, Amsterdam.
We took more pictures, we posted them facebook.
Anja Niemi Photography
(All images courtesy of the artist)
Photographer Won Kim shot these portraits of the guests staying (short stay visitors and permanent residents) at a D.I.Y. hotel (No, it’s not a “theme hotel” it just looks like it’s made by a non-builder) in Arakawa-ku, a county in northeastern Tokyo.
The unnamed hotel is situated in an office building, taking up one floor. (it looks more like half a floor, as in the movie Being John Malkovich; or maybe the cubicles are stacked?)
We tried to book this “hotel” but couldn’t find it on the web. Never mind, we obviously don’t wanna sleep there anyways, would you?
Won Kim DID sleep there and went back, in 2014, to take these portraits for his project Enclosed: Living Small read all about that here and here. Make sure you do, it’s interesting.
(images Won Kim©)
The Lobby of The Far East Hotel in Beijing has a simple and functional interior. One champagne colored leather couch with 4 matching chairs, that’s the only furniture to be found in this lobby. This furniture is humongous and placed against the wall, in a row, leaving enough space to fit 2 busloads of tourists in front of the reception desk. It’s all a bit run down because of old age but it’s a very comfortable place to wait, play, read, have a chat, spend the afternoon or even sleep. The marble floors are shiny and easy to keep clean, they are similar in style to the larger restaurants and shops in Beijing.
The lobby of The Far East Hotel Inspired us, at Mimi Berlin, whilst in search for a location to photograph our Mimi Beijing Fashion-Fest group portrait. Hotel lobby’s are always inspiring but we found this hotel lobby the most suitable for our project. Every time we visited the couch and chairs were occupied by at least one person doing something…..like walking through our camera lens.