Amsterdam, The Netherlands


Bridging Dutch and French culinary traditions: fresh fish from Holland, prepared with a French twist.

Bridges is located at the front side of five star luxury hotel Sofitel Legend The Grand Amsterdam. The location as well as the building enlighten the history of Amsterdam in a very unique way. To be precise, Bridges is located between the two oldest canals in the heart of the city. Did you know that the building originally was founded as a 15th-century convent? Many years later it became the Dutch Admiralty and it even served as the City Hall of Amsterdam. One of the most memorable historic moments definitely was the marriage ceremony of the former Dutch Queen, Princess Beatrix, and Claus von Amsberg, performed by the city mayor in the Council Chamber in 1966.

Bridges’ location served as the canteen of the former Town Hall until 1987. The famous Dutch painter Karel Appel painted a mural for this City Hall canteen. It represents a sober composition of several large matte fields of colour, with strong black lines outlining the contours of hungry children. The faces merely consist of two black dots showing the eyes. The inspiration to this painting was the hungry children of post-war Germany beginning at the train stations asking for food. The city authorities felt the mural was ugly, ridiculous and upsetting. The thought nobody could enjoy his lunch with the eyes of those children focused on him. Also the press turned against the mural. So at the end of 1949, the painting was covered by a partition. During 10 years the painting was covered.

The legendary location is now a place where gourmands can savor the culinary skills of Chef de Cuisine Bobby Rust. The style can best be described as a bridge between Dutch and French culinary traditions: fresh fish from Holland, prepared with a French twist. The interior design is inspired by the colors and shapes of the original mural, created Karel Appel, which graces the entrance and is delightfully open, comfortable and accessible.