Sunday, December 14, 2008

14 Dec 08 – Day 3 (Amsterdam)

We had breakfast in the hotel before heading off for the morning canal cruise at 9.30am which lasted for 1.5hr. We saw the Heinken brewery and other olden buildings during the cruise and took many photos along the way. Most of the people in the groups stayed inside the boat while Kim and I stayed outside for the entire time despite the cold.

Heinken brewery

Other buildings along the way

After that, we proceeded to the Coster Diamonds factory where we were explained how diamond is cut and polished, taught how to choose a perfect diamond, etc. We were then led to a room where we were shown a lot of good grade diamonds. Eva was given a ring with a “diamond” that has a new cut called “The Coster Royal 201”. The Royal 201 is a patented diamond polish with 201 facets which generates the ultimate sparkle. It could almost pass off as the real thing and we were told later that it was actually made of glass. Eva subsequently bought herself a real good grade diamond and had it mount on a white gold ring. There were a couple of other ladies in the group who bought diamond rings and of course their purchases were paid by their husbands.

Examining the diamond

Kim and I couldn’t afford diamonds and so we left the room early to look at other displays and I ended up buying a watch with a tiny, tiny diamond on it. It was during payment that we got to know that the lady that served us was from Malaysia, she likes to watch Korean drama and explained to us that there are 4 blocks of the building for Coster Diamonds factory and they used “canister” system for transfer of items and cash due to security reason.

Then we ate lunch at Restaurant Oud Holland at 12.30pm and after that it was free & easy for the rest of the day. Kim and I walked the 9-streets and Dam Square, visited some vintage shops such as Zipper, Episode, Lady Day and Laura Dols and we found out that Laura Dols offers better bargains. We also walked along Kalvestraat where we saw brands like Zara, H&M, Berska, Hema, etc. Then we ate waffle for dinner before going back to hotel at 7pm.

Part of our group lunch

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