The Amstelhof, a 17th-century retirement home, has opened its doors for the first time as the Hermitage Amsterdam Museum in Holland.

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev and Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands opened the renovated 9,925m² building designed, at a cost of $50m, by Hans van Heeswijk (building), Merkx+Girod (interior) and Michael van Gessel (grounds).

It consists of two large galleries, cabinets, an old chapel, regents’ rooms and an enclosed garden as well as a study centre, a restaurant, shops and the Hermitage for Children centre.

The Hermitage Amsterdam is the first branch of the Russian State Museum Hermitage in St Petersburg. It will organise temporary exhibitions chosen from the collections of the Hermitage and other Russian museums.

The opening exhibition features more than 1,800 objects narrating the life of Russian tsars.

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