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Amsterdam Blast from the Past: Kerkstraat

by Ron Meijer in History & Politics , 05 February 2015

Dit artikel is ook in het Nederlands beschikbaar

Usually, cleaning up is something people like to postpone. Old forgotten stuff in an overcrowded closet or attic has to make room, and usually can be thrown out. That is also true here, but this time it led to a nice surprise. Hundreds of old black and white negatives from Amsterdam in the 1980s and 1990s.

The “gay scene” as it was then, and what people refer to as "the good old days”. Well, whether they were that good remains to be seen. But that is another issue.

In several issues we will give a glimpse into what it looked like back then, starting with the then famous Kerkstraat. Almost forgotten now, it was one of the most famous gay streets in Amsterdam.

The start of the Kerkstraat, at both sides of the Leidsestraat, was known since the 1960s up to the late 1980s as the gay street of Amsterdam. After its decline, the Reguliersdwarsstraat took over this role.

The first establishment on the Kerkstraat was gay hotel Unique in 1951, followed in the mid-60s by bars, such as Spijker, Cosmo, Lord and De Pul, discotheque Homolulu and night sauna Thermos. The sex shop and video store 'The Bronx' was also famous.

Bronx Bronx De Pul
Spijkerbar 't Balkje Videotheek 63
Route 66 Beruchte disco Route 66



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