March 18, 2013

Film ad for Dutch wave pool (1953)

Filed under: History by Branko Collin @ 10:20 am

This video from 1953 shows an advertisement for an outdoors salt water wave pool called Bad Boekelo.

The film is called Zee op de Heide, ‘Sea on the moor’, which is ironic because Boekelo near Enschede is about as far away to the east of the North Sea as possible in the Netherlands. The video describes the wave pool from about 2 minutes in: “An ingenious construction with two mechanically moving doors creates a real surf.” The hotel was built to give the business people dealing with the nearby salt industry a place to stay, and filling the pool with the salt from nearby salterns must have been a nice gimmick.

The hotel still exists, but the wave pool (which was built around 1934) has been turned into a pond. The name of the salt company, then called Koninklijke Nederlandse Zoutindustrie, still survives in the KZ of Akzo Nobel.

Note that completely by accident this has become the third posting in a row where I describe the demise of a notable pool or resort in the Netherlands.

(Video: Youtube / Historisch Centrum Overijssel. Image: still from the video.)

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March 17, 2013

Photos of an abandoned public pool in Rotterdam by Frank Hanswijk

Filed under: Architecture,Photography by Branko Collin @ 8:52 pm

Public swimming pool Tropicana was built in 1988 on the Maasboulevard in the heart of Rotterdam and closed its doors again in 2010.

The Vers Beton blog asked photographer Frank Hanswijk to go and take a peek, which he did. He created a short photo report in which he documents the rapid deterioration of an abandoned public pool. In as short a time as three years the water has receded and most of the plants have died, and in their stead rust and dirt are conquering every inch.

In the 1980s tropical themed public pools became popular in the Netherlands—at least in my recollection. These pools focussed less on lap swimming and more on other types of recreation. They were typically equipped with water slides, whirl pools, wave pools and so on, and were nicknamed subtropische zwemparadijzen.

(Link: Trendbeheer, Photo: Frank Hanswijk)

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