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Main entrance of Ahoy Rotterdam (2012)
3084 BA Rotterdam
|Opened||15 January 1971 by Prince Claus|
|Renovated||1971, 1980, 1988, 1998, 2011|
|Sportpaleis van Ahoy (1971-2016)|
6,000 (Club Ahoy)
4,000 (Theater Hal 1)
|o Total space||54,000 m2 (580,000 sq ft)|
|o Exhibit hall floor||32,230 m2 (346,900 sq ft)|
|o Breakout/meeting||2,825 m2 (30,410 sq ft)|
|o Ballroom||30,000 m2 (320,000 sq ft)|
|Venue Website (Dutch)|
Ahoy Rotterdam (often referred to as Ahoy) is a convention centre and arena located in Rotterdam, Netherlands. Since opening in 1950, the centre has hosted many exhibitions, concerts and sporting events. The centre consists of three main parts: the "Beurs- & Evenementenhallen", "Congres- & Vergadercentrum" and "Ahoy Arena". The main concert venue, the Ahoy Arena (known as the "Sportpaleis van Ahoy" from 1971-2016), opened on 15 January 1971.
The basis of the present Rotterdam Ahoy was laid in 1950. After the devastation caused by the Second World War, the city of Rotterdam had worked on reconstruction and Rotterdam port was virtually complete. To mark the occasion, the Rotterdam Ahoy! exhibition was held in a purpose-built hall on the site where the medical faculty of the Erasmus University now stands.
The exhibition hall was called the Ahoy'-Hal. The apostrophe is a remnant of the original exclamation mark. The hall was used for a series of national and international events, such as the exhibition of the architect Frank Lloyd Wright's work. During the North Sea flood of 1953 the hall also proved its worth as a reception centre for victims.
Rotterdam Ahoy, in its current form, was built in 1970. The complex's striking design won various national and international awards for its special steel structures. The design of the venue took inspiration from the water, with the building laid out like a ship. The first event to be held there was the Femina family exhibition. Since then, Ahoy has been expanded on a number of occasions, and was renovated and refurbished in 1998 to designs by the architectural firm Benthem Crouwel which created today's multifunctional venue.
Media related to Ahoy Rotterdam at Wikimedia Commons