Spuistraat 253 – De Seylende Hoop

De Seylende Hoop 

‘The Strength of a Distinctive Design’

The Spuistraat was once a prominent canal and this can still be seen when looking at the outline of the street, especially looking at the distance between opposite facades. The canal was then called the Nieuwezijds Achterburgwal and was part of the medieval city. The Amstel divided Amsterdam into two almost equal parts until the end of the 14th century: the old side with the Old Church and the new side with the New Church. To protect the city, a canal was dug on each side with behind it a Burgwal, a wall made of earth, provided with a wooden palisade for protection. When new ramparts were constructed behind these around 1385, the existing rampart became the Voorburgwal and the new rampart the Achterburgwal, both on the old and the new side. Thus, the Oudezijds Voorburgwal, Oudezijds Achterburgwal, Nieuwezijds Voorburgwal and Nieuwezijds Achterburgwal came into existance. On the Nieuwezijds Achterburgwal one could find warehouses and stables, which belonged to the larger houses on the Nieuwezijds Voorburgwal. In 1867 the canal was filled up and since then the Nieuwezijds Achterburgwal became the Spuistraat.

The building at number 253 is one of the few remaining warehouses on the Spuistraat. A warehouse is intended for storage of merchandises, provisions, armaments; therefore, equipped with many floors and spacious attics. It is usually high and built of brick on narrow and very deep plots, preferably located by a canal. In the City Archives a registration is known of the sale of this property “De Seylende Hoop”, warehouse and yard, between Rosmarijnsteeg and Wijdesteeg on 13 October 1774. [1].  The Monument Register also dates the property to 18th century: Warehouse with gable (XVIII). [2]. Characteristic of a warehouse are the gable and the large openings in the middle axis for supply and removal of goods, closed with shutters, and smaller openings in the two side axes for daylight. In the top is a lifting beam with pulley, covered by a hood, for vertical transport. [3]. The first easily accessible warehouse floor is at trolley height and therefore the entrance to this building is lower than street level.

Quite often, such a warehouse is rather dark because of its depth and low ceilings but in this building the opposite is true. Next to the warehouse is a very low small seventeenth-century house at nr. 255 which made it possible to place many windows on the side wall of nr. 253 on the upper floors, providing the apartment with lots of daylight. Also, the floor timber of the attic was partially removed so that at the front of the apartment the view of the roof gives an enormously spatial experience and light. To top it off, there is a roof terrace between the two buildings. The view of the historic rooftop landscape of the city is incorrigible.

Arriving in the apartment, one immediately notices the exciting combination of a historic building combined with modern design. The renovation in 2015 by interior architect Ingrid Wijnen has brought a unity that provides peace. Carefully, the normally so ugly elements such as radiators, washing machines and appliances have been concealed in particularly tasteful, handmade wooden furniture. The furniture is not placed loose but runs in a flowing line through the apartment. At eye level, the entire width of the building is visible, providing a sense of space. The handwriting of the interior architect is recognizable throughout the apartment as for example in the stairs, stair gates, kitchen, bathrooms and closets. Nothing is ugly; everything is beautiful in this apartment. All components have been given attention.

In this three-story home, the sitting room is at the front on the bottom floor. Striking are the weathered doors from Algeria. Also on this floor are a bedroom and bathroom at the rear. A beautiful and at the same time comfortably walkable staircase leads to the kitchen on the middle floor at the front and a bedroom with bathroom at the rear. And then the same beautiful staircase leads to the top floor under the sloping roof with another bedroom and bathroom. This top floor can be closed with a lifting shutter which fits well with the character of the warehouse.

That character of the historic warehouse is well preserved and recognizable throughout the apartment. For example, in the chipped brickwork of the facade that remained untreated in the living room and kitchen, and which gives an authentic atmosphere to the rooms. As well as the beams with recognizable traces of use and history. In the ridge you can still see the lifting wheel where the supplies used to be loaded into the warehouse. This can also be seen from the levers in the facade.

The apartment has insulated glazing and the roof is insulated on the inside. Floors are alternating between old wooden floors and modern flat floors. The modern lightings are works of art. Throughout the apartment, much attention has been paid to the connections, details and transitions between the different materials and spaces.

In the morning, light enters through the windows in the side facade facing east. In the afternoon through the windows in the front facade facing west. At the end of the day, one can see the sun go down on the roof, approximately at the location of the iconic Westertoren.


[1] Amsterdam City Archives in Amsterdam, Waivers, Part: 148, Period: 1774, Amsterdam, archive 5062, inventory number 148, October 13, 1774, Waivers
[2] Rijksmonument 5604 – RCE, Cultural Heritage Agency of the Netherlands
[3] Haslinghuis – Janse, Architectural terms, explanatory dictionary of western architecture and architectural history, 1997, p 342-343

Text: Ir. Nanette de Jong, Conservation Architect

Photography: Marie-José van den Ende

Video: Mitchell Wever, Present Day


Asking Price
€ 1.385.000
For Sale

Type of Property

Top floor apartment in old warehouse
Building Type
Existing build
Year of Build
Very well preserved
Roof Tile roof with original tiles
Surfaces and Volume
Available Living Space
154 m²
Number of Rooms
Number of Bedrooms 3
Number of Bathrooms
Total number of Floors
Heating Central, High performance
Rooftop Terrace 
14 m²
Storage 4 m²
Cadastral Data
Cadastral Designation
Amsterdam F 7237 9
52° 22′ 14″ – 4° 53′ 22″
Owner situation
Owned Ground
Building status Rijksmonument
Cadastral size 70 M2
Location In the historic centre of Amsterdam
Parking situation
Public parking, parking permits, paid parking








Would you like to receive more information about this property, or schedule a viewing? Please contact:

Anne Paul Brinkman
Brinkman Fine Real Estate
Singel 60
1015 AB Amsterdam
The Netherlands

+31 (0) 20 244 19 62