It is difficult to imagine that you are not in a museum but a real shop when you walk around BeBoB Design near Leidseplein, where the furniture on display is classed as vintage post World War II. That means you will find artefacts that are designed by the likes of Le Corbusier, Eames, Jacobsen, Gispen, Gray and Starck.
And, like in many museums, you can be assured that what is on display represents merely the tip of the iceberg. The BeBoB store owners have a large repository of furniture in storage. So, in case, if you really need to find something specific, it is worth your while sending the manager Casey Godrie, an email inquiring after your item. Apparently, Godrie's main area of specialisation comprises authentic vintage lamps by major 20th Century designers.
Should you need a special present for someone you love, Fens Décor is the go to place. It specialises in decorative objects that are both rare and original. Only open on Saturdays, it also markets the famous French Jieldé lamps by Jean-Louis Domecq. Fens Décor is at Prinsengracht 12 close to the Farmers Market on Noordermarkt in the Jordaan area. In case you can’t make it on a Saturday, a private visit can be arranged by telephone.
Friday Next caters for young, hip and trendy people. It is a 'concept store' which incorporates a café serving remarkably good coffee. The establishment opened its doors only a few years ago, but is going from strength to strength. Although the owners, Esther Blaffert and Paulien de Vries, focus essentially on recently designed Dutch furniture , the odd object from abroad can be found in this shop too. It is located on Overtoom near the Vondelpark entrance.
Sprmarkt is really a former supermarket-turned-design-outlet. This enormous retail space now offers conceptual designer clothing, designer furniture as well as small objects from brands which include; Aviatic, Barbara Bologna, Barbara I Gongini, Avelon, Costa' Noir, Helmut Lang, Ilaria Nistri, Individuals, Kim Stumpf, and Monique Van Heistand. This a great place where you can make the strangest purchases. Oh, did I mention they had great bags too? Find Sprmrkt on Rozengracht 191 in the Jordaan area.
Like Sprmrkt, Galerie RA is a place where you will find the most curious items. It sells jewelry by contemporary talent, vases, accessories and gift items that are totally off the beaten track. Many local socialites shop at Galerie RA, which was founded by Paul Derrez, a well known Amsterdam designer. If you are loath jewelry shops but also hate bling, Derrez will have the perfect modern jewelry for you. From timt to time the galerie’s research art centre organises exhibits and lectures. You find Galerie RA at Nes 120 near Dam Square.
De Kastoor is one of Amsterdam’s oldest designer furniture stores. It definitely has the largest showroom of all the listed shops in this guide. You’ll find all the big names here; Ahrend, Alessi, Alinea, Arco, Artemide, Artifort, B&B Italia, Barcelona Design, Cappelini, Carl Hansen, Cerruti Baleri, Danskina, Driade, Droog, Fontana Arte, Foscarini, Fritz Hansen, Giorgetti, Ingo Maurer, Kartell, Knoll, Ligne Roset, MDF Italia, Minotti, Montis, Moooi, Pastoe, Richard Lampert, Stelton, Thonet, Vitra, Wittmann. You will have to make some effort to find the outlet, which is located now in IJburg in North Amsterdam at Medinalaan 89-90. But it’s well worth it as you will be able to spend hours in the showrooms.