Every music lover in Holland knows Paradiso, which is also called Amsterdam’s pop temple. The building is located on the Weteringsschans, near the Leidseplein, and occupies an old church built around 1880 in the Neo Roman style. These days it mainly welcomes music lovers, about 1,500 at a time!
Hippie home base
Part of Paradiso’s fame dates from 1967, when the Vrije Gemeente church building was squatted by a group of hippies who wanted their own club. Another group of hippies in the Vondelpark heard about it and established their ‘love-in’ in Paradiso. Shortly after that the church became known as ‘Paradiso cosmic relaxation centre’.
Pretty soon the club welcomed groups like Pink Floyd and Captain Beefheart, thus establishing its reputation. Concerts are still organised here today and the pop temple welcomes world-famous artists on a regular basis. It also serves as a venue for parties and other cultural activities.