“A tribute to the founders of the Red Light District”
It was 1983 when The Bulldog™ Mack opened its doors, eight years after the introduction of The First coffeeshop in the world. Although business was going alright in the livingroom of Amsterdam, an old-fashioned ice cream parlor was built to serve as a buffer for number 90. The floor, walls and ceiling were paved with bright blue tiles. On each table there was a small box, to operate the jukebox at the bar. A Belgian architect really made it a ‘50’s ice cream parlor.
Transformation to a brown café
It didn’t last long though. The residents did not feel at home in the blue-lit parlor. They missed the roots of the Red Light District, the distinct feeling of their home. So, not long after the opening, the ice cream parlor was transformed into a traditional ‘brown café’ (as we call it: bruin café). From that moment on The Mack became the new livingroom for the people from the neighbourhood.
A peek in the olden days
The Mack is a tribute to the founders of the Red Light District. Sure, you can go there for a drink and a bite. But, don’t forget to check out what’s actually inside! The walls are a fossil of the past. Original and unique pictures of the founders of the Red Light District give you an exclusive peek in the world famous history.
A treasure of pictures tells the story of - among others - Major Bosshardt (a famous person who devoted herself to help others through The Salvation Army. She was the family guardian of the family of Henk de Vries -owner of The Bulldog™- when he was a kid) and Raffie Nelson (a personal friend from Henk de Vries, who came from Taba, Israel). But you will also find original pictures of the people who made the Red Light District a world famous landmark. One of them is ‘Haring Arie’, a part of the first generation from the underworld in the Red Light District. But also ‘Parijse Leen’, who was a memorable prostitute for about 35 years.
This museum-worthy collection is one of a kind, because it is personal property of the founder of The Bulldog™. He was born and raised in the Red Light District; his vivid stories are immortalized on the wall.
A braid of worlds
The Mack will tell these stories. It tells a story about how each layer of civilization meet. It tells a story about how the underworld and the upper-world become The World. It is a walk through reality. About how prostitutes have a job that doesn’t define them, they are woman with a story. She is a mother. She is a daughter. She is a wife who does the dishes, like most women.
“For me, a prostitute is just as precious as a movie star. They both try to earn their living somehow. Let’s be honest, even movie stars (or pop stars, models, whatsoever) have to sleep with the top to get to the top. Well, these women tried sleeping with a producer; it just didn’t work out and got stuck in the job. Basically, it comes down to the same thing. These women are my movie stars. This is my tribute to the people of the Red Light District, which I love and honour.” - Henk de Vries
The Mack is an extension of the livingroom of Amsterdam; everyone is welcome. It's not just a hangout for locals; tourists also will quickly feel at home. Better yet, The Mack was voted Britain's best pub outside of the United Kingdom!
The Bulldog™ Mack also has a sincere commitment to society. Ever since the beginning, The Mack serves meals to the less fortunate through The Salvation Army.
Be welcome in The Bulldog™ Mack, the livingroom of Amsterdam. Be welcome to the one place where the romance of the Red Light District will be forever young.
- Exhibition “The founders of the Red Light District”
- Located on "The Bulldog™" Canal
- In the middle of the Red Light District
- Live football matches on a big screen
- Voted best and cosiest pub in the Red Light District
The Bulldog™ Mack
Oudezijds Voorburgwal 132
1012 GH Amsterdam
09:00 - 01:00 (Monday - Thursday)
09:00 - 03:00 (Friday & Saturday)
09:00 - 01:00 (Sunday)
09:00 - 17:00
A selection from the menu
Free Wi-Fi Hot Spot
Free herbal mix