Openbare Bibliotheek Amsterdam


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'Nimefurahi kukutana nawe. Kitu gani kinakulepa hapa?' Or: ‘Nice to meet you. What brings you here?’ But in Swahili. This sentence has been translated into all of the languages spoken in Amsterdam, from Frisian to Farsi. You can see them on the ceiling of Babel, the new restaurant on the seventh floor of the Openbare Bibliotheek Amsterdam (Amsterdam Public Library).

In the story of the Tower of Babel, all of the world’s languages come into existence at once. This is the origin of the expression ‘a Babylonian confusion of tongues’. That said, the ceiling of the Babel restaurant demonstrates that all of these languages go together beautifully, with all of Amsterdam’s languages printed on transparent glass ‘slats’. We believe that all of the world’s different languages and cultures make it a beautiful place, and at Babel we celebrate the diversity of both humanity, and of Amsterdam.

Babel is the perfect name for this restaurant, situated as it is in a city that’s home to almost 200 nationalities and many languages. Partly due to the beautiful view, it’s become a favourite meeting place for Amsterdam residents from all over the world. It’s a place where people from all kinds of backgrounds, food cultures and eating traditions can come and enjoy together.

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At Babel, we combine Amsterdam flavours to form an accessible menu that offers something for everyone, from freshly brewed coffee and delicious salad bowls, to a range of specialty breads and tasty dishes from the brick oven or the wood-fired grill.

Babel is on the 7th floor of the Openbare Bibliotheek Amsterdam, Oosterdok location, and is open every day from 10.00am to 10.00pm.

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