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Written by Rosina Majid   

Amsterdam RAI

Located south of Amsterdam’s city centre is the RAI, one of Amsterdam's railway stations which also serves as a hub for the city's Metro (subway) line. Named after the nearby Amsterdam RAI Exhibition and Convention Centre, the station first opened its doors in 1981, whereby it functioned as a terminus station. In 1990 the Metro line 51 came into service, and three years later the RAI became a fully operational railway station.


The Amsterdam RAI area is located between Oud-Zuid and Scheldebuurt and forms part of the business district of Amsterdam. The RAI complex and Metro station are located on Europaplein, which was formerly known as Westerschedlerplein, until the square was renamed in 1957. Not too far from the RAI is the Zuidas business district of Amsterdam, known as the “Financial Mile”, and is a rapidly developing area.


The RAI Exhibition and Convention Centre itself hosts some 50 international conferences and 70 trade shows each year. The building welcomes business people from all fields and industries. It also serves as a music and concert theatre, and was coincidentally also the site of the 1970 Eurovision Song Contest. In 2013 alone they have events such as AutovakRAI, a comprehensive vehicle trade fair, as well as Huishoudbeurs, a fair about fashion, beauty, leisure and cooking. Be sure to check their site www.rai.nl/en/ for upcoming events listed in their agenda before visiting. There’s something for almost everyone at RAI!


The RAI is so much more than just a business area. Closeby are many restaurants and bars visited by locals. Scheldestraat, named after the river Schelde, is home to many great shops. The avenue continues on from Ferdinand Bolstraat, which stems from the popular area known as de Pijp. It is well worth taking a walk down Scheldestraat to find a good local cafe or restaurant that will take the edge off your business trip.


There are also several restaurants and cafes on Europaplein itself, including the Korean eatery Takara, while Visaandeschelde on Scheldestraat, is an all-fish restaurant standing true to the street’s namesake. If you are visiting with colleagues or have brought the family along on your trip, then you should not pass up an evening at Knijn, Amsterdam’s oldest bowling centre. Here you can bowl to your heart’s content and also enjoy a nice meal out!


When in Amsterdam, you are bound to run into a canal or a spot of nature now and then. Beatrixpark is a stretch of green space located behind the RAI congress centre, and is named after the Queen of the Netherlands. The park is clean, quiet, and is well equipped with facilities for children to keep the little ones occupied as you relax in the green oasis.


When business and/or fun time is over for the day, the RAI is also home to many hotels and a range of other accommodation for the business traveller or tourist. There are also many seasoned apartments in the neighborhood that are perfect to offer you a breath of fresh air from the touristic city centre. Please check here for a list of accommodation in the area to find something that will suit your needs.


The RAI’s landing stage doubles as an access point for canal boats. So why not leave trains, trams and the Metro for other tourists, and arrive in style! The RAI, located between Duivendrecht and Amsterdam Zuid train stations, is also served by  tram 4 from Central Station and Metro line 51.


 

 

 

 

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