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Official Review by Sander Kolsloot, Stadium Journey Regional Correspondent
Stadion Feyenoord was built in the years just before World War II. The building of it started in 1935 and finished in 1937. The stadium's design was unique, because of its shape (oval, the shape of a bath tub), it’s structure (steel and no visible beams or supporting steel structure to obstruct the view) and its size (at its top it could hold 66,000 spectators, a record for The Netherlands).
The structure was so unique, it was tested section by section. During the testing, 1500-2000 people had to jump up and down at the sign of a whistle to test the structure.
After a large renovation in 1994 (which included the building of club level/business seats and the addition of a roof in the shape of the stadium) it now can hold up to 51,577 spectators at a time.
The stadium is the home of Feyenoord Rotterdam, one of three professional football (soccer) clubs in Rotterdam.
As I am a regular visitor of this stadium, I must admit I have a little skewed vision of the atmosphere and the fans in the stadium. Still, I try to give you a neutral review of this football temple.
The FANFARE scale is our metric device for rating each stadium experience. It covers the following:
Each area is rated from 0 to 5 stars with 5 being the best. The overall composite score is the "FANFARE Score".
The food and beverage section is not the one we should be raving about. It contains soft drinks, hot cocoa, coffee, light beer and tea. Furthermore you can buy typical Dutch snacks such as a 'frikandel' or a 'kroket' (deep fried meat), fries, Turkish pizza and some candy bars.
The quality is so-so, but if you're up for heavy drinking, it still does the trick.
The atmosphere in the stadium is unmatched. The shape of the stadium makes the sound go round in it. There are rumors that players who enter the stadium experience a fear, because of the atmosphere. The history and the grandiosity only add to that. On my most recent visit, the home team was playing a very important match, so the crowd was buzzing.
The neighborhood is probably the worst thing about the whole stadium experience. It is located on the south side of the city, right in between a rail station, a commercial zone and a living area.
Before the match it's quite a walk to get to a decent, football oriented bar.
It takes about 15 minutes of walking and you'll get into the surrounding neighborhoods where the bars are buzzing and filled with boozing home team supporters. This is quite an interesting scene and that adds to the experience. I would recommend Bolle Jan. It's a really local bar, all covered in Feyenoord memorabilia and on matchdays they play only Feyenoord music. It's the best for a good pre match drinking session.
The Fans are amazing. Recently the team has been through a couple of rough seasons, finishing 10th in 2011. Still, the fans keep coming to the stadium, filling it to capacity each and every home game.
They are very devoted and once they come to life, it feels like the stadium erupts. It even feels as if the stadium is bouncing (which can be seen on some youtube footage, especially 01-29-2012 against arch rival Ajax).
When Ajax is in town, the fans are roaring even more, accompanied by large banners which cover complete sides of the stands. That's a truly intense experience.
Stadion Feyenoord is very easily reached by various forms of transportation. Of course a lot of Dutchies can even bike to the stadium, but for non-natives the train (with a train stop right next to the stadium), the tramway (also with a stop next to the stadium) and the car can be feasible options. If you decide to take the car, the parking lot isn't very big, you need reservations and parking in the surrounding area can be a nightmare, let alone the huge traffic after the game. Your best bet is to take one of the public transportation options.
The return on investment is huge. If you manage to get tickets to a normal home game (against the likes of NAC Breda or probably RKC Waalwijk) you will pay around €22,- for a normal seat and around €35,- for a decent seat. It's very much worth the money.
If you have the luck of getting tickets for matches against PSV or (even better) against Ajax, you end up paying about double the amount, but the return is probably triple in atmosphere and excitement.
Bonus points can be given because of the Feyenoord Museum (located in the 'Maasgebouw' next to the stadium). It's a small but interesting museum with some memorabilia such as European trophies and other non-silverware memorabilia.
You can also book tours through the stadium on non-match days. They guide you through all the interesting places in the stadium, such as the press room, the dressing rooms and you can even have a peak and a foot step on the pitch (weather permitting).
**Photos courtesy of Bert Stelling.
Member Review by BerendRotterdam on May 22, 2012
I am a proud supporter of Feyenoord. I havent been to many stadiums in the world but I know for sure that "De Kuip" is the most beautiful stadium in Holland. The atmosphere is really great. My mother and me went to Feyenoord - Heracles a couple of weeks ago. It was my mothers first Feyenoord match in De Kuip. She experienced something not many clubs can experience. I will love Feyenoord for ever. And I know the Feyenoord fans will be the best in The Netherlands for a really, really, realllllly long time!
3074 GB Rotterdam, Netherlands
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