Travel and skate through time
Every project brings with it something unique, but this project is extra special. Since 2009, Ice-World has been proud to call itself the partner of the skating rink at the Dutch Open Air Museum in Arnhem. Although the museum was for a long time only open in the summer months, the success of a skating rink experiment changed all that.
The Dutch Open Air Museum is a cultural-historic museum in which all kinds of situations and crafts from bygone times are depicted. The museum is known for the authentic experience it offers, for example by having actual craftspeople work in the décors. Visitors are transported back in time and experience what everyday life looked like in the days of yore.
In the winter months, the Open Air Museum is atmospherically illuminated and visitors can experience the historic winters of the past once again. And if there is one thing that just cannot be missed, it’s the ages-old connection that the Netherlands has with skating. This is why, since 2009, you have been able to put your skates on and enjoy a real Ice-World ice skating rink every winter at the Open Air Museum. Since 2012, the skating rink has even been expanded with a FunSlide slope so that the young and the not so young can enjoy sledging, against the backdrop of a real windmill.
The customer’s wish
The combination of a traditional Dutch sport and the authentic environment makes this skating rink truly unique. Special account was taken of this when designing the skating rink: for the Open Air Museum, it was important that the skating rink should not look out of place, but should fit in with the atmosphere of the museum. And we succeeded: the skating rink seems to have come straight out of a picture book. The open design ensures that the surrounding buildings and trees remain nice and visible, and the atmospheric lighting provides a magical effect.
The rest of the museum is also given winter decorations around this time. Every sense is stimulated: the scent of freshly baked bread rolls, the taste of traditional Dutch dishes and the music of concerts and choirs in the background. This event is therefore a unique experience for a non-skater as well. The locations are transformed into winter atmospheres and the craftspeople give a demonstration of daily work in winter.
- 885 m² ice floor, 120 m² children’s skating rink and a FunSlide with a 90 m² ice floor
- Visitors: 100,000 in 6 weeks
- Special activities: Winter storytelling, hot bread rolls, a winter fair, concerts in the Zeeland church and on the Zaanse Plein, fire barrels and stalls. Choirs, a winter market, figure skaters on the skating rink, tastings of winter delicacies and various demonstrations and workshops.
The cold winter season is now no longer a reason to pass up a chance to visit the Open Air Museum. The skating rink also provides regular visitors with even more liveliness and attraction. This has not gone unnoticed: since the skating rink opened, the Open Air Museum has seen visitor numbers grow.
This project proves once again that Ice-World not only delivers a quality product but creates a complete experience for the visitor. This is greatly appreciated by the customer, as can be seen from the fact that the cooperation has recently been renewed for several years.
Since as early as the thirteenth century, recreational skating has been taking place in the Netherlands, and the sport is synonymous with the history of our country. The Open Air Museum is therefore the ideal place for a terrific afternoon of skating fun!
The skating rink, located on the ‘Westerstraat’, a magnificent canal house from Amsterdam, and with its FunSlide on the Grote Weide, is a huge success with 100,000 visitors in six weeks.”Henry Vos, Dutch Open Air Museum Arnhem