Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Tips for a Low-Budget Night Out: Dinner at Listers Parkzicht & Musical in Parktheater

On Saturday February 25th, we had a very great evening. First we had dinner at Listers Parkzicht and after that we went to the musical "Next to Normal" in the Parktheater in Eindhoven. It all might sound quite expensive, but if you do it right you will have a low-budget evening! Here are tips and how we experienced the evening

Dinner at Listers Parkzicht:
A five minute walk from the Parktheater, will take you to the restaurant called "Listers Parkzicht". The restaurant serves a classical French cuisine. They offer two courses for €21,50 and 3 course menus (€24,50), and we were lucky, because we had a discount card for one free dinner! We received that card from the 4xvrij (which means four time for free). 4xvrij is a website, where you can get coupons with 50% off from different trips, so also for different restaurants. The dinner was absolutely delicious and the waiters were very kind! They had a full restaurant with guests who wanted to go to their musical in time and they did a really good job. We had a three course dinner in just 1,5 hour! We started with a delicious carpaccio with a very nice truffle cream (1). As main course, I had tartar (2) and the others had sea bass, scampi and spaghetinni(3). Unfortunately, we don't have a picture of our dessert (only an empty plate(4), because we couldn’t wait to eat it! It was an ice cream with hot cherries.
My Budget here: 17,25 euro (including two drinks and the discount)


Musical at the Parktheater:
The Parktheater has recently been renovated and offers a variety of shows and entertainment productions. It’s a very modern building and it also has a really interesting design inside. If you’re interested: Parktheater also organizes tours through the building. In this tour you will get the opportunity to be on stage and you will have a look behind the scenes.
The theater even has international productions, so it’s also interesting for foreign visitors. These are some of the top performances the Parktheater has to offer for this year:

- Dance: HyperISH - ISH
March 15th 2012
- Music: Golden Earring
March 19th 2012
- Cabaret: Met alle respect – Theo Maassen
April 13th  – April 15th  2012
- Musical: Saturday Night Fever
May 23th – June 3th 2012

You could also choose to have dinner in the restaurant in the theatre itself, which is "Park&Pluche". They offer a special theater diner for the visitors of the Parktheater. Park&Plushe has a special dish on the menu, which they call  ‘the favorite recipe of …’  Every month, one of the famous artists, who performs in the Parktheater gives his/her favorite recipe. So for example in the month January, they had ‘the favorite recipe of André van Duin’(1), which was sprouts with bacon, potatoes and stew.

We saw the musical ‘next to normal’ in the Parktheater this evening (2). Top musical artists (3), like Simone Kleinsma, Freek Bartels and René van Kooten, performed in this musical. The musical had a very heavy story, about a mother (Simone Kleinsma) who suffers from depression. The musical was a big success on Broadway (3)!

Budget tip: For students, the Parktheater has a very interesting offer. Students could buy a last-minute ticket on the day of the performance for just 12,50 euro. This offer applies to all performances (except when the performance is sold out) and the tickets are available  half an hour before the performance starts. This is a very good offer if you compare this to a musical ticket which easily costs 40 euro.



Saturday, February 25, 2012

5 historical moments in Eindhoven

In this blog we will describe the most important moments in the history of Eindhoven. You can find the moments that were crucial for the development of Eindhoven, but also the moments in history that Eindhoven became world news.

1) The moment that the city Eindhoven becomes the city Eindhoven
Because of fires, bombardments, pillages and even hurricanes, not much is left from the original city nowadays. But we know for sure that the city Eindhoven became the city Eindhoven in 1232.
In this year, Duke Hendrik I of Brabant granted city right to the little agricultural settlement. He probably did this to improve the trade route from north to south (Den Haag - Liège) and from east to west (Antwerp - Germany).
Fortunately, a couple of monuments have survived from this period! For example the monastery Marianhage (1421).
This building used to be the castle of Jan van Schoonvorst the lord of Eindhoven and Woensel. The castle wasn’t good enough for him, so he built a new castle (this new castle didn’t survive the eighty years’ war).
Also the Genneper water mill (before 1249) has survived the history of Eindhoven. It is also famous because it has been painted by van Gogh!

2) The moment that a light bulb became a light city
And then there was a little light bulb… Eindhoven wouldn’t be the same if Gerard Philips didn’t open his first lamp factory in 1891. After the first difficult years, he decided to hire his younger brother Anton. With Anton’s arrival the business began to expand rapidly. Especially after the First World War there was a high demand for light bulbs. Philips needed people from all over the country. They had to live somewhere, but Eindhoven wasn’t big enough. No problem would Anton Philips probably have thought: we just build an entirely new quarter with everything our employees need for their living. So this was the beginning of for example Philipsdorp and Drents Dorp with i.a. a Philips school, a Philips library and of course a Philips Sport Vereniging (PSV). Philips also arranged high education for his employees and for their employees’ children! Nowadays Philips is one of the biggest multinational electronic companies. There aren’t many public places in Eindhoven that don't have their origins in Philips.

Not only Philips, but also DAF (a Dutch truck company) had initiated the development of the city. Eindhoven has developed into one of the leading cities in Europe in the field of high tech, knowledge and design. Therefore, many technical companies are settled in Eindhoven, but also the Technical University, the Fontys Hogescholen and the Design academy. So it isn’t that unpredictable that Eindhoven uses the slogan ‘leading in technology’.

3) The moment of freedom in Eindhoven
Eindhoven has suffered a lot in World War II. Between 1942 and 1943 there were three bombardements on Eindhoven. On september 18th 1944 the Allies liberated Eindhoven as one of the first cities in the Netherlands.
The square ’18 septemberplein’is named after this event.

4) The moment that a sport became a culture
Eindhoven is not only known world wide as the light city, but also as the home base of the soccer club Eindhoven. Founded in 1912 by Philips, PSV has become famous by winning the UEFA Cup (1978) and the European Cup (1988). PSV belongs to the Big Tree in the Netherlands (along with Ajax and Feyenoord). The club has won the national league 21 times, the national cup eight times and the Johan Cruijf Schaal also eight times. They are often nicknamed as Boeren in reference to their origins as a provincial city club.

5) The moments of fame of Eindhoven Airport
In terms of numbers of served passengers, Eindhoven Airport is the second largest airport in the Netherlands. In 1932, the airport was founded under the name Welschap. During World War II, it was extensively bombed. Many of these bombs were found years after the war during the construction of the new district Meerhoven. (I remember that once I had a day off from school, because one of these bombs had to be dismantled!)
Eindhoven Airport became world wide news, when the Hercules aircraft crashed here in 1996. This disaster took the lives of 34 passengers. This amount could have been less if the air control hadn’t failed in informing the Chief Fire officer about the number of passengers. The fire fighters assumed that only the crew was on board. Therefore, they started with extinguishing the fire instead of rescuing passengers.
Fortunately, Eindhoven airport was also positive in the news. For example when the Pope arrived at the airport in 1985. This was the first Pope, since the 11th century, who visited the Netherlands. But also hundreds of thousands spectators visited Eindhoven Airport, when the Netherlands national football team arrived, after becoming European Champions in 1988. This was one of the biggest events on Eindhoven Airport. 

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

 Swimming experience in Eindhoven - Go and Enjoy

If you have one of those boring days you should really consider going for a swim in Eindhoven. Eindhoven has two large swimming pools. The first one is the “Ir. Ottenbad’ and is located in the north of Eindhoven. When the weather conditions aren’t favorable for swimming outside four inside pools are at your disposal. All four of them are recreational, but there is also a 25 meter pool which is often used for training purposes.  During summertime a large outside pool is also open. The Ir. Ottenbad is a modern accommodation, where various water sports are offered such as aqua jogging, aqua robics, aqua spinning and other swimming activities to keep people fit. Furthermore, various sports clubs use this swimming pool as their base for offering aqua activities. So if you live in or near Eindhoven, you could consider joining a diving or snorkeling club.

The other swimming pool in Eindhoven is ‘The Tongelreep’ also known as ‘National Swimming center the Tongelreep’, which is really worth mentioning.  Probably you didn’t know, but this is the largest swimming center of Europe and cannot be compared with the Ottenbad.  The Tongelreep has a 50 meter pool, a 25 meter pool for platform diving, a training pool with four swimming lanes and a large recreation pool with a wave generator and many water slides. Moreover, during summer you can have a lot of fun outside, because there are four outside pools with four water slides available.  When you visit this swimming center you will be assured of a day full of enjoyment. Like the Ottenbad the Tongelreep is also the home basis for many leisure activities and sports clubs.       

The Turbotol - An exiting water slide
Large 50 meter pool
Recreation pool in The Tongelreep

Some historical facts. The training facilities like the 50 and 25 meter pools are built within a separate building. When Pieter van de Hoogenband – one of Holland’s most talented swimmers – ended his swimming career,  he has been honored by renaming this swimming center to ‘Pieter van den Hoogenband Swimming Stadium’. Throughout the world this swimming center is of importance. For instance in 2007 the Dutch Open Swim Cup 2007 were held in this swimming facility. Furthermore, in 2008 the European Aquatics Championships took place in this swimming pool.

Pieter van de Hoogenband during training
Without doubt The Tongelreep is far more amusing and entertaining for a day out than the Ir. Ottenbad. So if you’re in Eindhoven and you like swimming and water slides you should really visit this swimming center. It truly is a life time experience. However, if you want to exercise the Ottenbad is also very suitable. It depends on what you’re looking for, but both pools are great for swimming sports. Just make sure to visit at least one when you’re in Eindhoven!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Check out the new restaurant of IKEA

A few weeks ago the furniture giant IKEA opened its new restaurant in Son, which is a village just outside Eindhoven. In the past it could be the case that you had to wait for an empty table. However, these days you don’t need to worry about that anymore, because the redecorated place is prepared for 752 people. 

                                 An impression of the new restaurant

The old restaurant resembled more or less a living room and the new dinner room rather looks professional, modern and somewhat clinical. Some people say that the cosy atmosphere has been replaced by a rather uninviting and anonymous dinner hall, whereas other clients mention that the redecoration has turned out very well. So as always it’s just a matter of taste. It might be a marketing strategy, but the new restaurant is decorated with a lot of IKEA furniture. So now it is possible to get an impression of the products they sale, during dinner as well. 

But why should you stop by in the first place? Well, if you’re looking for some new furniture it is always a good idea to visit IKEA, because they have relatively cheap but qualitative products. However, their food is also very good and again very affordable. You can already have a tasty supper starting from € 5,50. Moreover, the also serve delicious meals for lunch. Do you want to end your day with a delicious soft ice-cream? You should definitely try because they certainly taste good and they cost less than 50 euro cents. 

IKEA lies just outside Eindhoven, but it is not difficult to get there. You can easily take bus route number 11 at the Central Station in Eindhoven. This bus will take you to the Meubel-square. From there the IKEA is within walking distance. So if you want to have an affordable but delicious meal, you should really visit the new impressive IKEA Restaurant.  

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Get ready for Carnaval!

Next week it will begin… The biggest party in the south of the Netherlands.  CARNAVAL! No explanation is needed for the citizens of North Brabant and Limburg, but here we'll give a short description for our foreign visitors:

Carnaval started as a catholic party, where you had to eat as much as you could before the Lent began. The name carnaval has its origins from the Latin expression carna vale, which means ‘farewell to meat’.
Well… not much has been left from this original catholic party. Nowadays carnaval is well known as the party where you have to
drink and party as much as you can. Everybody will wear a costume as well. Officially, Carnaval begins on a Sunday (this year February 19th) and takes place for three days. But almost everyone will start already on Friday (February 17th).   

Traditions during Carnaval vary from town to town. One tradition is that every city and village change their name during Carnaval. So for example Den Bosch is known as ‘Oeteldonk’ (which means Frog hill) during this period. Eindhoven is called ‘Lampengat’ (this refers to lamps from Philips).

What do you have to do with carnaval?

1) Get a costume
In North Brabant and Limburg , there are many stores especially for carnaval clothes. However, these clothes are sometimes really expensive. You could also be creative yourself. Take a look at your old clothes and costumes and create something with it. For example, when you have an old leather jacket you can go as a rockstar. If you have some glitter stuff, you can go as diva. Or maybe your parents have some old clothes and you can go as a hippie. Also big clothes companies like h&m or coolcat have sales around February with clothes no one would ever wear, except with carnaval. These are often really cheap and most importantly, when you create something by yourself you will have a very original costume.

2) Learn the songs and dances of the carnaval hits
Also very important is the traditional carnaval music. Okay, it’s not the best music in the world and the lyrics don’t often make sense at all (lyrics like: ‘I want sex with the bold one’ and ‘there is a horse in the hall….’ ), but the music makes the party complete. Here are some carnaval hits which you will certainly hear in Eindhoven.
3) Go to the carnaval parade in Eindhoven
This takes place on Saturday February 18th.  A lot of carnaval associations created beautiful cars, acts and music and will show these during the parade. The parade will start in ‘Fuutlaan’ at 13:11 and goes via ‘Parklaan’ and ‘Dommelstraat’ to the ‘Stationsplein’.

4) Go to Mad Monday in Eindhoven city centreThere will be a football match between PSV and EVV, a Mother-Mad-Monday-Beauty-contest and performers like De Gebroeders Ko and Bonnie St. Clair.

5) Visit one day a different town.Every town has its own traditions during Carnaval. Eindhoven differs a lot from example Den Bosch or Maastricht. Also little towns around Eindhoven (for example: Geldrop, Neunen, Valkenswaard, Veldhoven) differ from Eindhoven. So you should try another town for one night. 

Or almost every night…

7) Eating herring on Wednesday
If you’re still able to get out of your bed after five nights of partying, you should go to the tradidional ‘haringhappen’ (eating herring) on the Wednesday after Carnaval.


Monday, February 6, 2012

Movie: ‘Doodslag’

It is really cold! So it’s also a good time to go to a movie. One of the movies in the cinemas right now is ‘Doodslag’. Why is this movie so special? Because, this movie was filmed entirely in Eindhoven. There are scenes on many well-known locations. For example we see the PSV stadion, the parktheater, Strijp S en also the blob on the 18 september square. Besides that it is nice that it takes place in Eindhoven, the movie has also a great story. It’s about a recent theme in the Netherlands: Offensive behavior against social workers.

The story: Max (Theo Maassen) has worked as ambulance driver for twenty years. As a ambulance driver, he often gets in unpleasant situations. One night he gets out of his mind. Max is on his way to a emergency. A mother is giving birth, but her condition and that of the baby are critical. On his way with his colleague in a ambulance with sirens blaring, they are stopped by a group of teenagers. The group starts threatening them.  Following the standard procedure, Max and his colleague have to stay in the ambulance and wait for the police. However, Max, who is extremely concerned about the women and child, gets out of the car and hit one of the boys. He continues his way to the mother and child and save them. But the boy is dead…

It’s a very special movie. It's nice that the moviemakers made use of locations in Eindhoven. Sometimes it is not all realistic, but the movie and the story are really impressive. It has humor and sometimes it is sad, but it certainly makes you think about the theme. It also gives a good view on how the media influences cases like this. The movie is absolutely worth watching, also when you don’t know much about Eindhoven.

Look at the trailer with English subtitles:

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Snowfever in Eindhoven

Last weekend, as much as 5 cm snow fell in Eindhoven. With temperatures below - 17 degrees the horror winter seems to come at last. Trains were delayed for hours, there was more than 800 kilometres of traffic jam, but luckily everbody could warm their souls up in the heart of Eindhoven. Let the snowfever begin! 

Almost every outdoor sport has been cancelled this weekend, so it is a good time for ice skating! Eindhovens Dagblad gives a list of ice skate locations in the region on But always be careful while skating at these locations! 

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

The Best of Eindhoven

Eindhoven is also known as the light city. If you Google ‘highlights of Eindhoven’ you will possibly get links about PSV, Philips, the van Abbemuseum and the Evoluon.
But Eindhoven is much more than that!

A well-known slogan of Eindhoven is: “Eindhoven de Gekste!” (translated: Eindhoven the Craziest!). If you visit Eindhoven during Carnaval you will possibly hear this a hunderd times. On this blog we would like to show you
the best of Eindhoven. That could be about anything. For example the fact that Eindhoven is not only the craziest city, but it has also been awarded with the most generous city (2010), the most intelligent city (2011) and the best city centre (2011)! We also want to give you tips about activities, highlights and events. A look in the nightlife on Stratumseind for example can’t be missed in a city trip to Eindhoven.  
Still not convinced that Eindhoven is special? Look at the following events which have taken place just in the last four months:

The international light festival in Eindhoven. Every year in November, Eindhoven is the decor and podium for Glow. During this week the city is decorated by light art, designed by national and international designers. You can follow the walking tour in Eindhoven to see all these light arts on different locations.
More information:

 Next Glow: 10-17 November 2012

Dutch Design Week
One of the biggest design events in the Netherlands. It takes place in Octobre on different locations. The newest ideas and technologies are shown here. Last year, 180.000 people attended the event.
More information:

Next Dutch Design Week: 20-28 October 2012

Marathon Eindhoven

The marathon of Eindhoven is a yearly event. The marathon always takes place in October. During this marathon, Eindhoven is full of celebration.

Next Marathon: October 14th 2012

Concerts Klokgebouw 

 Many great artists (including Marco Borsato and Armin van Buuren) have already performed in the Klokgebouw in Strijp S in Eindhoven and many will come!
More information on: