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The Bank, Starbucks, Amsterdam, eco coffee shop, green renovation, adaptive reuse, historic renovation

This Friday, March 9th, Starbucks will open its first European concept store located in a renovated historic bank in Amsterdam. The new new shop is located in the vault of the historic Amsterdamsche Bank, a landmark building on Amsterdam’s famous Rembrandt Square and will be the largest Starbucks in Europe coming in at 430 sq. meters. Not just a coffee shop, “The Bank” has also been designed for theatre, live music, and new taste and drinking experiences. The ‘Slow’ Coffee Theatre is inspired by the Slow Food movement and will feature premium coffee experiences, an in-house bakery, and will debut Starbucks first Clover brewing system in Europe.

The Bank was designed by Liz Muller, Starbucks Concept Director, who brought on 35 local artists and craftspeople to transform the historic space into the new hip coffee shop. Using local people and local materials, the crew paid homage to Dutch trade and local history. The space features a floor-to-ceiling ‘tattooed’ mural celebrating the history of Dutch coffee traders, repurposed Dutch oak throughout the space, antique Delft blue tiles, a ceiling sculpture created from 1,876 hand-cut wooden blocks, and a wall clad in recycled bicycle inner tubes. Muller and her team also followed LEED guidelines in the renovation, although there is no word on yet whether they will seek certification for this project or not. (You can learn more about Starbucks green initiatives and coffee shops in our extensive interview here.)

“With this store I was inspired not only by the role 17th century Dutch traders played in bringing coffee to the world, but also by the place The Netherlands holds today as a design and creative capital,” said Liz Muller, Concept Design director. “My vision was to bring the space to life by celebrating local history and tradition while looking to the future by giving it a sense of theatre and discovery.”

Images © Rien Meulman