Lonely Planet Writer

'Floral vandals' have taken to the streets of Amsterdam and decorated hundreds of bikes

If you were in Amsterdam this week and were puzzled at the sight of hundreds of bicycles decorated with beautiful flowers, it was done to mark the opening of the botanically-inspired Kimpton De Witt – Europe’s first Kimpton hotel. The hotel florist together with team members took to the streets of the city to ‘vandalise’ bikes with beautiful flower arrangements.

A team of 'floral vandals' took to the streets of Amsterdam and decorated hundreds of bikes. Image: Tristan Fewings/Getty Images for Kimpton De Witt hotel
A team of ‘floral vandals’ took to the streets of Amsterdam and decorated hundreds of bikes. Image: Tristan Fewings/Getty Images for Kimpton De Witt hotel

Within hours, hundreds of bikes across Dam Square, Centraal Station, Museumplein and other areas were adorned with flowers. It was designed to reflect that nature and botanicals are key themes for the hotel. This is evident from the living wall at the entrance and a local Dutch florist ‘Frank’ on site, to the indoor courtyard, bird-shaped bedside lights and Pols Potten porcelain gold-dipped parrot statues.

A team of 'floral vandals' took to the streets of Amsterdam and decorated hundreds of bikes. Image: Tristan Fewings/Getty Images for Kimpton De Witt hotel
A team of ‘floral vandals’ took to the streets of Amsterdam and decorated hundreds of bikes. Image: Tristan Fewings/Getty Images for Kimpton De Witt hotel

The floral vandals also placed printed notes by Amsterdam-based illustrator, Hyshil Sander, on each bicycle to encourage people to post a picture to Instagram and be in with the chance of receiving a personalised gift. These rewards included an invite to pop in for a free coffee and an order of sugar-dusted beignets, a cocktail on the house at House Bar or even a free night’s stay.

A team of 'floral vandals' took to the streets of Amsterdam and decorated hundreds of bikes. Image: Tristan Fewings/Getty Images for Kimpton De Witt hotel
A team of ‘floral vandals’ took to the streets of Amsterdam and decorated hundreds of bikes. Image: Tristan Fewings/Getty Images for Kimpton De Witt hotel

“We want to surprise our local Amsterdam community with an unexpected ‘Kimpton moment’ that puts a smile on their faces and encourages them to pop in and check out their new neighbour,” said general manager, Mike Robinson.

A team of 'floral vandals' took to the streets of Amsterdam and decorated hundreds of bikes. Image: Tristan Fewings/Getty Images for Kimpton De Witt hotel
A team of ‘floral vandals’ took to the streets of Amsterdam and decorated hundreds of bikes. Image: Tristan Fewings/Getty Images for Kimpton De Witt hotel

Kimpton De Witt is set within two original buildings from the Dutch Golden Age in the Palace Quarter neighbourhood, steps away from Amsterdam’s Centraal Station. Among the personal touches it offers, guests can pedal away and explore the city on complimentary VanMoof bikes.

A team of 'floral vandals' took to the streets of Amsterdam and decorated hundreds of bikes. Image: Tristan Fewings/Getty Images for Kimpton De Witt hotel
A team of ‘floral vandals’ took to the streets of Amsterdam and decorated hundreds of bikes. Image: Tristan Fewings/Getty Images for Kimpton De Witt hotel

Kimpton De Witt is the first Kimpton hotel to open in Europe and the first outside the Americas, with a second hotel scheduled to open in Paris in 2020. Learn more at about the Dutch hotel here.