Rotterdamse Dakendagen: From Manhave’s balcony to our new HQ’s open doors
This past weekend saw a lot of exciting events around the city, too much to choose from really. The Rotterdamse Dakendagen organized a multitude of events, from film screenings to parties, on exciting locations: rooftops, that otherwise would have been closed off to the public. One of the main events was the so-called Dreamwalkers walking across a 40 meter long tightrope, 140 meter in the air. This explorer had the privilege of being able to watch these antics from an amazing spot; for the occasion Manhave, one of our esteemed partners, hosted a get-together in their office. Located in the building where the highliners would finish their balancing act, it was the perfect spot to enjoy the event.
Walking through the door of Manhave’s office I was greeted by the smell of strawberries, with two huge bowls of them in the room. Their office was beautifully decorated, as you might expect from a real estate company, complete with scale models and floor plans, surrounded on the outside by a large balcony where most of the crowd was gathered in anticipation of the Dreamwalkers. Catering was provided by one of Rotterdams Michelin star restaurants Joelia, located just around the block. (Special shout out to the almond cake with lemon curd and glazed pecan; dear Joelia, you sure know how to make a foodie drool). The Manhave meeting room, a room where I’m sure many a tense meeting has taken place, was turned into kids central for the occasion, where the next generation was able to work on their drawing skills, potentially in hopes of getting them up to scratch with their parents’.
At 12.00 o’clock the much anticipated event started. A walker appeared on the rope crossing the Kruiskade; first sitting down, then slowly, careful to maintain balance, standing up. As the Dreamwalker started making his way across the 130 meter long line, a big crowd gathered on Schouwburgplein to witness the event. The walker, with sunglasses and headphones on, on bare feet crossed the street on the lightly swaying rope, in a surprising pace, reaching the other side some ten minutes later. And when he reached the finish line, a cry of excitement (and perhaps relief) rose from the crowd. Well from most of them, some of the kids were, I will assume jokingly, hoping for a fall.
Then after a closing speech, it was off to the ‘Rotterdam, I Love You’ Headquarters opening party, where DJ Liquid Soundclash welcomed us with some uplifting tunes, film music only. The ‘Rotterdam, I Love You’ HQ is located on the Kruiskade and is open to the audience every Wednesday between 10 and 17. The building was graciously made available by Manhave, who are renovating the area. Looking for the line between public and private space, the area will be a combination of office space, residential space and shops, and now the RILY headquarters.
The walls of the HQ are decorated with works by Rotterdam based artists, such as prints from Michael van Kekem and photography by Stacii Samidin. Visitors were offered the choice between various beverages, among which Pinkyrose lemonade was being served with crushed ice and sprigs of mint, like fancy non-alcoholic cocktails, and there was more food by Joelia.
One of the former changing rooms was set up with a vintage typewriter, that guests could use to write their love letters to the city. But it wasn’t all drinking and eating, producers Joeri Pruys and Matt Daems took the stage to talk about their project, Manhave spoke about their plans for the area and Rotterdam One discussed their ideas for a new platform. The day was concluded with a performance by spoken word artist M., expressing his passion for the city in rhythmic form. A work which he aptly named; Rotterdam, I Love You.