The Netherlands may be small, but if you think you have seen it all after visiting Amsterdam you couldn't be more wrong. The 'Amsterdammers' are proud of their creativity, their zest for life, their talent for business. 'Rotterdammers' pride themselves in being no-nonsense, hard-working and solid. Word has it that in Rotterdam people buy their shirts with the sleeves pre-rolled. Rotterdam's inner city was virtually wiped off the map in the 1940 German air strike. It lacks the quaintness of the old inner city of Amsterdam. Instead, it's a modern city with innovative and practical architecture. The historical highlights of the city are more recent. There's Hotel New York, the former head office of the Holland America Line at the pier where the big boats would start their journey. For 100 years, until 1971, family and friends would gather here to wave goodbye to those sailing off to a new life in America.
The building is preserved with in it's late 19th century beauty and now serves as a funky hotel and restaurant at the heart of the action. Especially in the summer time, the location fully comes to life. Impromptu performances, pop-up restaurants and other events take place in and around Hotel New York. Small and fast water-taxis keep the big dock buzzing with activity. A ride across is relatively inexpensive and great fun.
Nope, Rotterdam isn't anything like Amsterdam.