Where were you born?
I was born in Woerden, which is on the outskirts of Utrecht, and I now work at the Utrecht tourist office (VVV Utrecht). I advise tourists from Holland and other countries about Utrecht and the province. I like the province because of its variety; you’ll find forests, windmills, lakes and more. The city of Utrecht is beautiful because of its history, the canals and wharves, the Domtoren [Dom Tower] – and Miffy (Nijntje in Dutch).
Where do you live?
I live in Soest and I love its natural setting. There is a lot of forest for beautiful walking or bicycle tours, and the Eem river.
If money were no object, where would you live and why?
Where I live now!
Which European city is your favourite shopping destination?
Antwerp in Belgium. It is a beautiful historic city and the shops are great!
Which are your favourite Utrecht stores?
Sabon, a nice shop with all kinds of soaps, scrubs and so on; Douglas, for make-up, perfumes and the beautiful gift wrapping; the de Bijenkorf department store; De Droom van Utrecht, which is a beautiful local shop with tea, herbal preparations, candy, soap and vinegar; and Atelier De Loeff, another local shop with all kinds of candles.
And your favourite restaurants?
Stadskasteel Oudaen, a beautiful restaurant in an historic castle; Restaurant de Rechtbank, a modern restaurant loved by the local people; and Brasserie Goeie Louisa, an exclusive restaurant situated in a five-star hotel.
Do you have a favourite local café?
De Winkel van Sinkel is a grand café/restaurant in the centre of Utrecht near the canal. It’s in a beautiful location and at weekends they have nice parties, like an 80s night!
Where do you take out-of-town friends?
To Kasteel de Haar, a beautiful fairytale castle 20 minutes from here.
Where do you like to celebrate?
Brasserie Goeie Luisa.
Do you have a favourite walk in Utrecht?
I love the almshouses and chambers walk which we sell in our tourist office. It leads you through historic houses and beautiful hidden gardens in the museum quarter.
In your opinion, which is the best attraction in Utrecht and why?
The Domtoren [Dom Tower], of course – the highest church tower in the Netherlands, with a very informative story. The guided tour is very nice to do and you can enjoy the view over the city and further! domtoren.nl
Which do you think is the best museum in Utrecht?
I don’t have a favourite because there are a lot of museums in Utrecht, all with their own themes. The Utrecht museums website is in English, German and French as well as Dutch. museautrecht.nl
Which person from Utrecht do you most admire and why?
The most important person from Utrecht is Sint Maarten [Saint Martin], the patron of the city.
What insider tip would you offer for exploring Utrecht?
Trajectum Lumen, the ‘light tour’. trajectumlumen.com
Where do you most like to travel for inspiration?
I draw my inspiration from my own city – the events and attractions in Utrecht.
For more information about tourism in Utrecht go to visit-utrecht.com and bezoek-utrecht.nl