A lot of tourists coming into the Netherlands visit Amsterdam to enjoy all that the city has to offer. What most of them don’t know is that just a stone throw from the city are smaller towns with as much history and fun things to do as the capital city. Some of these small cities are Volendam, Edam and of course, the Amsterdam Beach – Zandvoort. One of these beautiful towns is Amstelveen.
Amstelveen is a town and municipality in North Holland. The town borders Amsterdam and is only a few minutes away from the Ajax Johan Cruyff Stadium and the Amsterdam Schiphol Airport.
In the 13th century, the Amstelland area was divided into Ouder-Amstel (east of the Amstel river) and Nieuwer-Amstel (mostly west of the Amstel river). Nieuwer-Amstel was founded in 1278 and was therefore known under the name Aemstelle. Amsterdam received city rights in 1300 and thus separated itself from the Amstelland. In 1342 Amsterdam was given a piece of Nieuwer-Amstel for the first time, which was later expanded in 1387.
The ecclesiastical community of Nieuwer-Amstel was created when a new church (chapel) was built to the west of the Amstel river. Until 1334 the church remained subordinate to a clergyman in Ouderkerk. Amstelveen originated as a village in the peat extraction area to the west of the river.
The name Amstelveen has been used since 1964 for the part of Nieuwer-Amstel, which remained after the area was annexed by Amsterdam.
Formerly a rural community, Amstelveen formed the core of the Nieuwer-Amstel area as a small village. In 1915 Amstelveen was connected to the railway network of the Haarlemmermeer railway lines and a Station Amstelveen in the old village and a few smaller bus stops. There were railway lines in three directions: Aalsmeer, Amsterdam and Uithoorn. The station building from 1915 is still present and used as a shop.
After the Second World War, the Nieuwer-Amstel area became overcrowded and a lot of locals had to move to Amstelveen to escape the hustle and bustles of city life. Amstelveen also became a location for people working at Schiphol. New districts were quickly built and in the sixties, Amstelveen was one of the fastest growing cities in the Netherlands. However, housing quality and landscaping were not lost sight of here. From 1964 onwards, the name “Amstelveen” went from being the name of a small village in Nieuwer-Amstel to the name of the entire municipality.
In addition to homes, many offices have also been built over the last few decades; especially for the commercial, banking and insurance sectors. The town is home to beautiful museums, breathtaking architecture and head offices of national and international institutions. Many people who work at Amsterdam Schiphol Airport live in Amstelveen. Even for a short time, Amstelveen had the reputation as the “town of pilots, stewards and stewardesses”. Due to its closeness and short travel time to the airport, professionals working at Schiphol Airport preferred to live in the town.
If you travel to the Netherlands with KLM Royal Dutch Airlines, there’s a big chance your pilots and stewards/stewardesses live in Amstelveen.