Going Dutch: Dutch Design Week Comes To San Francisco


In the world of the wanderlust-y, there are Francophiles and Anglophiles, and die-hard Eat, Pray, Love fans that believe Italy and India are the meccas of spiritual reinvention.  Me, I’m more of a Nederphile.

No, I don’t get all hot and bothered over biology geeks, I am simply in love with Holland. I became acquainted with its more widely celebrated attributes during a trip to Amsterdam as a teen (French fries and mayo, those other cafes), but fell hard for its finer qualities when I went back and toured the whole northern half of the country by bicycle a few years ago (cheese, cheap campgrounds, bike highways, socialized medicine, gay marriage and great art and design). So this week is something of a treat for me, it being Dutch Design Week in San Francisco.


And although I thought I was something of a Netherlands expert with my knowledge of Maarten Bass and Bakfiets, this morning’s media breakfast at the Dutch Consulate introduced me to a handful of other things that I should love about the country, from the Gemeentemuseum—the Municipal Museum in the Hague that was something of a modern architecture crystal ball when it was built 75 years ago—to the Dutch Design Double, an annual design celebration that just wrapped up in Utrecht and Amsterdam.

Events continue in San Francisco through Thursday, with topics such as building sustainable cities, Dutch fashion and of course, bicycles. I’ll be at the Urban Biking presentation this Thursday afternoon at Supernatural on 18th Street, where representatives from Bikes Belong, Public Bikes and My Dutch Bike will be on hand to discuss the challenges of increasing bike ridership in San Francisco. Perhaps there will also be some cheese. 


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