About 20,000 people visited the reopened Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam on Saturday between 1:00 pm and 12:00 pm, after a reopening ceremony led by Queen Beatrix in the morning.
On Saturday no entrance fee was raised, and visitors received a guided tour of the main highlights in the museum. The reopening was broadcast live on the channel Nederland 2 and about 1.15 million people saw the show.
The Rijksmuseum, which has gone through a thorough 10-year-long renovation, is completely renewed. During its renovation, the “Rijks”, as it is called in Amsterdam, was closed to the public. It is the biggest museum in the Netherlands with 80 halls and with more than 80,000 pieces of art. Among these are the world famous “The Night Watch” of Rembrandt van Rijn, a rare armchair by Gerrit Rietveld and two wooden temple guards from 14th century Japan.
On Sunday the museum was opened again for paying visitors. The first visitor was welcomed festively by directors Wim Pijbes and Erik van Ginkel. British Bonnie Sicka, a teacher of art history, received a year contract for ‘Vriendschap van het Rijksmuseum”, flowers and a Rijksmuseum Guide.
More than 75,000 entrance tickets have been sold in pre-sale.
The Rijksmuseum is now open again, every day of the week, for visitors.
According to Jet Bussemaker, Minister of Education, Culture and Science, the museum is also interesting to kids. There are not only paintings but also, for instance, original items from Nova Zembla.