Wednesday, 30 November 2011

Heineken Experience

Opening hours

Daily from 11.00 till 19.00 hrs. 
(Last entree and ticket sales at 17.30 hrs.)


Stadhouderskade 78, Amsterdam. Take tram 7, 10, 16,
24 or 25 and get off at the Heineken Experience.
More Information

Sunday, 20 November 2011

Die Gedenkstätte Berliner Mauer

The Berlin Wall Memorial extends along both sides of the Bernauer Strasse and is currently undergoing expansion. On the border strip that had been located in East Berlin, an open-air exhibition uses the Bernauer Strasse to explain the history of division. The memorial also includes the Monument in Memory of the Divided City and the Victims of Communist Tyranny and the Window of Remembrance. The Chapel of Reconciliation is also a part of this ensemble.

On the other side of the street that belonged to the western part of the city, the newly constructed Visitor Center and the Documentation Center with a viewing platform and the exhibition about the time when the Berlin Wall was built in August 1961. Inside the Nordbahnhof S-Bahn station the exhibition “Border Stations and Ghost Stations in Divided Berlin” documents the impact that the Wall had on the city’s public transportation system.


Wednesday, 9 November 2011

Chiesa Santa Maria del Carmine - Milano

As you proceed along Via Ponte Vetero, which runs into Corso Garibaldi, passing by some original and long established shopfronts, Piazza del Carmine is on the right hand side, where the street widens, overlooked by the historic 15th century Church of Santa Maria del Carmine (Our Lady of Mount Carmel). This has been the site of a place of worship since the year 1250. At that time it was entrusted to the Carmelite Friars. The existing building was begun in 1400 according to a project by Bernardo da Venezia. Construction work was held up for a time after part of the building collapsed and only begun again in 1447 using material made available by the destruction of the nearby Visconti family Castle, destined to be replaced by the Castello Sforzesco. Work on the Church in Gothic style designed by Pietro Solari was only terminated after 1456. In 1490 the parvis or main entrance area was created necessitating the demolition of some of the houses in Via Ponte Vetero. After some baroque additions the Church was readapted by two architects Giuseppe Pestagalli (1826-39) and Carlo Maciachini. The latter was responsible for the erection of a new façade inspired by " Gothic-Lombard" models. An intervention by Ambrogio Annoni was aimed at removing layers of decorations inside the Church restoring it to its original proportions by lowering the floor. The bell tower had already been reduced in size in 1664 in obedience to the order of the Spanish Governor.
The inside of the Church was built on a Latin-cross plan with a nave and two side aisles separated by cylindrical pillars with arches and high, pointed cross vaults where rope-like relief decorations in terracotta can be admired. Originally there were 14 chapels in the side aisles and subsequently as many as 22, now there are only l0 including two in the transept. Two works by Giovanni Battista della Rovere better known as "Il Fiammenghino" (1575-1640): the Risurrezione di Lazzaro (Lazarus raised from the dead) in the transept on the right and the Incoronazione della Vergine (The Coronation of the Virgin) on the left can be admired.
Around the Church a network of old narrow streets crisscross this part of Milan making up the fascinating Brera neighbourhood. In medieval times this was known as Braida (which means "prato" or field and is derived from an old Germanic word). It is where there were still traces of the "Iigera": the underworld of petty criminals endemic to the city in the early years of the nineteen-sixties. Nowadays, instead, the streets named Carmine, Ciovasso and Ciovassino connecting up Via dell'Orso, Via Brera and Via Verdi are part of what is considered a very exclusive area. A little further north sumptuous restaurants and fashionable nightspots contributing to a local "dolce vita" punctuate Via Madonnina and Via Fiori Chiari up to Palazzo di Brera housing the Accademia (Art Faculty) as well as the world famous Art Gallery - Pinacoteca di Brera.