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When the Royal Palace was built in the 17th Century, the Netherlands was a republic so the building was actually Amsterdam’s city hall. The building became the royal palace of king Louis Napoleon and later of the Dutch Royal House. The building is very extravagant for a city hall because the 17th Century was Amsterdam’s Golden Age. The city made a fortune with the Dutch East Indies Company, which sailed around the world moving goods and people.

The town hall was opened on July twentieth 1655 by Cornelis de Graeff, the political and social leader of Amsterdam. It was built by Jacob van Campen. He took control of the construction project in 1648, as the Town Hall for the City of Amsterdam. It was built on 13,659 wooden piles.

A yellowish sandstone from Bentheim in Germany was used for the entire building. Marble was the chosen material for the interior.

Jacob van Campen was inspired by Roman palaces. He drew inspiration from the public buildings of Rome. He wanted to build a new capitol for the Amsterdam burgomasters who thought of themselves as the consuls of the new Rome of the North. The technical implementation was looked after by the town construction master Daniël Stalpaert.

After three and a half years of extensive interior renovations to the Royal Palace, the Palace opened its doors for public again in 2009. The result of this renovation is a historical treasure that features the best of its 17th and 19th century splendor.

Nowadays the palace is used by Queen Beatrix for entertaining and official functions during state visits and other official receptions, such as the Queen's New Year receptions and several award ceromonies. When you visit the palace you will see clues that indicate the palace is still in use, including flat screen TVs and modern telephones.

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