Amsterdam XXX – Both meanings explained in detail

by Roger

by Roger | April 3rd, 2008  

AdamXXXNightIf you’ve yet to make your first trip to Amsterdam you can certainly be excused for not being aware that the XXX symbol can be seen all over town and almost every one of those appearances has nothing to do with the city’s infamous and large adult entertainment industry. It’s really quite an unusual coincidence that the city’s official symbol that was chosen over 500 years ago is also a recent shorthand for the sex industry.

The city flag and coat of arms

Your city may not have its own official city flag, but Amsterdam does and variations of it are all over the place. You could also call it the city “coat of arms” because it appears on the sides of buildings and also famously on those little plug things that keep cars from driving on the sidewalks.

Adam XXXpostThe XXX symbol is three St. Andrew’s Crosses in white on a black stripe on a red background. On the flag they appear horizontally, but most other places they appear vertically. St. Andrew was a fisherman who lived in the 1st Century AD and was said to have been crucified on an X-shaped cross. The Amsterdam XXX symbol dates back to the year 1505 when the city was a fisherman’s town, so the coat of arms was established as the symbol for the city itself and it also flew as a flag on all ships registered in Amsterdam.

Next to wooden shoes, the city flag and things with this design might be the most common items at Amsterdam’s many souvenir shops. The fun connection to the city’s sex tourism reputation certainly helps sell more than a few of these souvenirs, but the city is nevertheless proud of the symbol and you’ll be sick of seeing it soon after you arrive.

The Amsterdam sex industries

Definitely more famous for those who’ve yet to arrive in Amsterdam is the XXX that relates to sex and porn and such. The city has probably the most liberal reputation in all of Europe and possibly in the world, thanks in part to the addition of the famous coffeeshops where anyone 18 and over can legally buy and smoke marijuana or hash.

Prostitution

Just as it is in about half the countries in Europe, prostitution is legal in the Netherlands. But with the possible exception of Hamburg, Germany, Amsterdam is the only European city where prostitution is also a tourist attraction. Though the city has lately been cracking down on some of the underworld elements that have infiltrated its infamous Red Light District (locally known as De Walletjes), you can still stroll the streets of this gorgeous neighborhood and see scores of women behind red-lit windows who flirt with passersby hoping to interest them in a quickie behind the curtains. One thing that many people find fascinating about this is that prices for Amsterdam prostitutes are generally much lower than they are elsewhere, mostly due to the abundant supply and the fact that this is a low-risk business that is well regulated. Many of them are much better looking than you might expect as well.

There are also many brothels in Amsterdam that offer more discreet and classy experiences in an unrushed way, for a price that most people find very low. These places mostly just look like houses or apartments so you won’t just stumble into them accidentally.

While the brothels, or “private houses” as they are called in Dutch, are very discreet because customers almost never see each other by design, there are also sex clubs in Amsterdam where customers mingle in the same bar as one another until a deal with a girl has been reached. These places might be fun, but they can be more expensive than one would expect when surprise taxi commissions and expensive bottles of champagne are added on to your tab. They otherwise operate in a similar way to brothels, so those looking for some adult pleasure should consider which style place suits their desires best. The most famous and expensive of Amsterdam’s sex clubs was called Yab Yum, and it was closed down by the city in early 2008.

There are also dozens of escort services in Amsterdam for people who’d rather have an encounter in the privacy of their hotel room or apartment. Prices tend to be quite a bit higher than meeting a girl at a brothel, and there’s always a bit of a risk that the girl you see in the photo doesn’t look quite as lovely as you expected when she’s standing across from you at your hotel room door. But on the other hand, since prostitution is legal here and these companies rely partly on repeat customers, the risks aren’t as great as they might be elsewhere in the world doing the same thing. Many of the girls working for the agencies are quite lovely, and for proof you might want to check out our list of the hottest 12 escorts in Amsterdam.

>>more information on Amsterdam prostitution

Adam flag hangingLive sex shows

Also in the Red Light District you’ll find several theaters, three of which have nightly sex shows of one sort or another. Each of the three places is different, and two of the three regularly feature live sex by a couple as part of the show. All the shows involve sexy stunts, the most famous of which involves a banana. They are extremely popular among people on bachelor/stag party weekends, especially from England, but plenty of bachelorette/hen parties get in on the fun as well.

>>more information on Amsterdam sex shows

Adult toy shops

Also throughout the Red Light District you’ll find an abundance of shops that sell DVDs, magazines, and every manner of sex toy you could possibly think of. Whether you are straight or gay, man or woman, you’ll be able to find something you like at one or more of the shops. Don’t wait too long though, as many of the shows have been targeted by the city for having organized crime connections and some of them are likely to lose their business licenses in the coming years if not sooner.

Adam coat XXXAmsterdam sex sites on the Internet

You certainly don’t need an Amsterdam travel guide to help you find XXX sites on the WWW, but nevertheless Amsterdam is one of the most popular “supposed” locations for paid sexy web cams and other XXX entertainment. Whether many or any of these sites that claim to be in Amsterdam are actually within the city limits or in the Red Light District itself is hard to determine, but some of them probably are. The city is certainly a haven for potential sex workers and there are only a couple hundred windows in the city so the other people have to make a buck somehow.

Amsterdam coffee shops

Sure, this has nothing to do with XXX, but this is the other half of the twin appeal of Amsterdam for people who’ve only heard the stories from friends. You can definitely still buy and smoke weed at around 150 “coffee shops” in Amsterdam itself. This is a slightly complicated topic if you’ve never been here before, so with this in mind we’ve put together a very comprehensive Amsterdam Coffeeshops FAQ that should answer all your questions and explain everything in great details, with plenty of photos that should help you get a full grasp of things before you arrive.

>>the Amsterdam Coffee shops FAQ

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{ 1 comment }

marcus evans August 10, 2008 at 8:17 am
Corner

Thanks!

Corner

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