Them’s fightin’ birds – swans vs. ducks in Amsterdam

Attack mode swanThere’s a gang war in Amsterdam’s Red Light District, and it’s for the birds. Seriously. The swans and ducks are out to get each other.

I first noticed the commotion because of the ducks. They were so loud, and unlike the placid ducks I know from my home lakes in Minneapolis, they were fluttering and flapping around like mad. I honestly wondered if some of the Red Light District’s more refined substances had accidentally gotten into the canal.


But still. Then, I saw the swans. The swans and ducks were have full-on standoffs. In particular, the swans were tensing themselves up (into a totally beautiful, but definitely aggressive, shape like the one shown) and swimming into duck territory to cause trouble. Or maybe the ducks started it. I don’t know. I’m no ornithologist.

I did, however take three videos of the insanity. I’ll skip the first one, before I walked north through duck territory and encountered the swans. Here’s #2:

Forgive the spinning; I was trying to figure out what in the devil was going on with all these freaking out birds.
Then, these two angry-looking swans charged into duck territory. I started to wonder if somewhere a swan was being held hostage. It’s like something out of a cartoon directed by Quentin Tarantino.

Reservoir Ducks, anyone? Did you see that duck just jump the leading swan in the lower right corner (0:07 seconds)?? From what I understand, these is the usual situation in the Red Light District’s canal. Them’s fightin’ birds.

Videos taken by Annie Scott on location in Amsterdam, Sunday, November 8, 2009.

This trip was paid for by the Netherlands Board of Tourism, but the ideas and opinions expressed in the article above are 100% my own.

The most beautiful Pizza Hut in the world

Pizza Hut in The Hague
Is it a shame, or is it fantastic? Rather than tear down a former royal building in The Netherlands’ historic Den Haag (The Hague), it’s been turned into a Pizza Hut. What do you think about that, National Trust for Historic Preservation? Taco Bell at Hemingway’s house in Key West anyone?

Seriously, this Pizza Hut maintains the ornate, gorgeous, original mid-18th century ceiling of what used to be the Grand Salon, and is decorated with appropriately decadent chandeliers. There’s a lovely fireplace, classy dark wood fixtures, and well … I have no qualms calling it the most beautiful Pizza Hut in the world. I encourage you to try and find a lovelier one. Queen Wilhemlina’s treasury was once here, for Pete’s sake.

At the end of the day, though, it’s still Pizza Hut. Check out the photos below for a tour of this anachronistic, WTF wonder. If you weren’t thinking of heading to The Hague, which is just 45 minutes from Amsterdam, perhaps this will change your mind — and if you’re into the chandeliers, check out the ones in The Hague’s Escher Museum here on Luxist.


This trip was paid for by the Netherlands Board of Tourism, but the ideas and opinions expressed in the article above are 100% my own.

The Cloud: A Dubai Resort in the Sky

The Cloud is just a concept right now, so don’t get your hopes up. Yet. But oh what a cool concept it is.

Nadim Karam, a Lebanese architect, presented this resort-in-the-sky concept at the International Design Forum in Dubai last month. The actual resort will resemble a cloud floating 300 meters in the air, with slanting support beams that look like sheets of rain. Check out more pictures after the jump. [via]