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update: 30-01-2012

 

All pictures in this left column are to show you what you see when you walk around the present Kurhaus. I walked around clockwise

 

Boulevard

some neat parking

the South wing 

The pier

Merry-go-round

Seagull begging for french fries

successfull

airborn after dinner

another seagull

a more agressive one

Look along the pier

North-west corner

Northwing city side

City side front

 

end of clockwise tour

 

please drop your money on the floor
the mug is filled with coffee.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A harmonium in Scheveningen Pier

The Kurhaus (a German name) was built as health resort at the Dutch seashore at Scheveningen, now a part of The Hague.
A quality hotel with all the gizmos one finds in a health spa.

In 1818 a mr. Jacob Pronk built a wooden seashore pavillion, for visitors who visited the shore to have saltwater baths. In 1884/1885 the wooden pavillion was replaced by a new hotel named 'Kurhaus'. It burned in 1886. From '86 to 1887 is was rebuilt, designed by German architects Johan Friedrich Henkenhaf and Friedrich Ebert. The hotel - spa resort focussed on German guests.

The mayor of The Hague in those years was Esq. François Gerard Abraham Gevers Deynoot, hence the square at the city side of the hotel was named after him. Later a street connected to the square was named after him too.

Kurhaus Cityside

It is now a hotel with some 250 rooms.

Kurhaus sea side

 

The roaring twenties

In the years 1920 the Kurhaus and the Pier created a roaring nightlife and evenings full with music and ballroom dancing. From a history book Piet Bron found a picture of such an evening filled with joy and music at the Pier. (Aussenpier)

Piet Bron, born in The Hague told the story to me.

Queen Wilhelmina Pier

The original pier, built in 1900/1901 was 416 meters long, starting at the Kurhaus terrace steps as seen on the picture above.

Browsing a book with old photos of The Hague and Scheveningen (where the Kurhaus and Pier are) I found one particular photo. Dutch people know about the Scheveningen Pier. The present pier is the second one. The first Pier was named "Queen Wilhelmina Pier" and was destroyed in World War II by fire on March 26 1943. This Pier was a fully wooden construction. This pier was directly opposite of the backside of the Kurhaus. The Queen Wilhelmina Pier was built in 1901 and was opened by Prince Hendrik, husband of the Dutch queen. After the fire the German occupying forces were afraid that the Pier could be used as a landing head, so the Germans destroyed the remains of the Pier.

In 1920 - as said - there was music and entertainment on the Pier.

Wilhemina Pier en harmonium

On this picture we see the Pier Pavillion, where artists performed for upper class visitors. This photo shows the singer Elmer Spyglass. Mind you, it is 1920. So in the book he is introduced als 'The negro baryton singer Elmer Spyglass'.

The most important part of the picture is of course the fact we see a harmonium at the bottom of the image. And is is absolutely sure this is a pressure harmonium. The openened toplid and the clearly 'caisse carré' of the instrument. Here it was used in secular music, where most of the Dutch people familiar with the harmonium only knew of the suction 'religious' house organ.

The New 1959 Pier

In 1959 a new one was built, out of concrete, about a 100 metres to the north, so not longer before the Kurhaus. This one measures 382 meters from the the waterside.

The Pier is still in use, it is now an entertainment facility and also a wellknown restaurant, gambling halls/casinos. Part of a chain of highway restaurants presenting itself with a very recognizable sign, a giant Toucan. The owners of the chain are named Van der Valk (Falcon), so the toucan (a parrot variety) seems very logical :-))

 

The present Pier 

the present pier

Present Pier

 

Anyone out there with clear pictures of about the same on Eastbourne Pier in England, and isn't there a Pier at some place in New Jersey?