INFORMATION ABOUT CANAL BOAT HILDA
INFORMATION ABOUT CANAL BOAT HILDA
A canal cruise in Amsterdam with the comfort of a luxury salon boat. If the weather is favorable we can open the windows and you will experience that pleasant outdoor feeling and you will become part of the city.
But even if the weather gods are less forgiving the atmosphere inside will be cosy and comfortable. Thanks to the air heating system and safety glass the temperature will stay pleasant and the view on our great city unobstructed.
The eco friendly electric propulsion is almost silent and free of vibrations. The interior design is flexibel and comfortabel. For a luxury dinner we can create one long classically set table for you for up to 16 guests. For up to 24 guest we can accommodate a nice buffet. 28 guests can enjoy a dinner at separate tables. If you only want to admire the view and have a drink and snack we can accommodate up to 36 guests.
Salon boat Hilda possesses a luxury wine cabinet. So you can be sure that your favorite bottle of wine will be served at the right temperature. To serve you a good cup of coffee we have an espresso machine onboard. There is a comfortable toilet, wireless microphone system and music system with I-pod connection.
The story of salon boat Hilda, Amsterdam’s first official canal boat, starts around the year 1895. She has been build as a passenger vessel for sailing trips on river Rhine. In 1923 Cornelus Albert Plas buys her and sails her to Amsterdam. There he starts the first public canal cruise company in Amsterdam.
Photo of Hilda at the Rokin in April 1930.
Thanks to the Beeldbank van het Gemeente Amsterdam Stadsarchief
The photo on the left shows Hilda at the Rokin before the Dam square was build. The right photo shows her at the Damrak moored at the jetty of rederij Plas
In 1953 the first canalboat of Amsterdam is expelled from active duty and will be demolished. But two brothers save her from the scrapyard and turn her into a private yacht.
Years later first owner Niek finds her in a dilapidated state but instantly recognizes her beautiful and subtile lines. He knew that she was something special although she was almost a shipwreck. He had to pay a considerable sum of money, but in 1998 he received his license for commercial passenger transport. So the extensive restoration was initiated. Left and right photographs of how Niek found her in the nineties.
The interior design is functional but classic. The ritme of the original shingles has returned in the teak roof beams of the ceiling. The shape of the roof’s edge has been styled to the original line of the deck sheer. Al these thoughts and drawings have been made by Niek himself. He chose for a very firm isolation of the salon boat, air heating and an electric propulsion. These are considerations that make Hilda a very comfortable and eco-friendly passenger vessel.
As you can see no costs and effort has been spared. Large parts of the hull have been replaced and are constructed in a traditional way. The sturdy ironworks are the solid base for the rest of the restoration, the electrical system, the intricate woodwork, upholstery and lastly the paint job.
Restoration saloon boat almost finished
Thanks to the electric propulsion there is almost no noise and due to firm isolation and a air heater it is comfortable all year round. The double glas windows give a unhindered view over our beautiful historic city and canals in rainy conditions, but can also be opened when the sun comes out.
There is an easy and safe entrance to the main saloon and the guests have a direct contact with the captain. In the aft side of the boat there is a sitting area where, if the weather is agreeable, the tent cover can be opened and you can enjoy that feeling of being outside. The atmosphere is one of chique and class. This is reflected by the teak wooden panels, brass work, nice finish and pleasant color scheme.