Salsa is very popular in Amsterdam. Not only is there a large Latin-American community in Amsterdam, but the Dutch also love taking their salsa classes (there are many salsa dance schools) and for the people from old Dutch colony of Surinam, the moves just seem to come naturally.
Amsterdam salsa parties are always attended by colorful mix of people, from different countries, with different backgrounds and different cultures. And that’s not that common in Amsterdam night life. A visit, if only to look at the beautiful dancers and dances, is definitely worth it.
1. De Kroon, every Wednesday and Sunday
Grand café De Kroon at the Amsterdam Rembrandtplein organises a salsa dancing evening every Wednesday and Sunday. There is a wooden floor in a large space. Dancing is on salsa, zouk, merengue and bachata. Entrance is free. It starts at 21.30. Before the start of the free dancing, there are salsa dancing classes by lasalsa.nl.
2. Lizboa, every first Sunday
Lizboa is a party ship in the east of Amsterdam (Zeeburg) which has a fixed location on the eastern side of town. Every first Sunday of the month there is a free salsa party. First dinner is served from a buffet (at starting at 17.00), after which (at 20.00) a live band plays a few hours. So it’s best to come early. The Salsa Sunday party continues until 1.00
3. Summer Breeze Latin Night, Thursdays in summer
Westergas Terras is a large venue with big outside terrace at Westergasfabriek where you can dance salsa every Thursday. People travel from all over Holland for the Summer Breeze Latin Night. When it rains, the party moves inside where there is a large party space. The downstairs restaurants prepares some Caribbean bites and cocktails to get into the mood. Entrance is free. Salsa parties only in summer!
4. Latin Lounge @ Hotel Arena
Hotel Arena is not only a hotel, but next door, in an old church, there is also a large 2-floors club. There is also a restaurant and a lounge area. The monthly (last Sunday of the month) Latin Lounge parties are extremely popular (they always sell out in pre-sale!). Apart from a salsa area, there is also a Latin house area.
Organiser of the Latin Lounge parties is A Venue. They also organise the outdoor festival LatinVillage in July.
Odeon is a club very centrally located on the Singel canal in between Rembrandplein, Leidseplein and Spui. It’s a beautiful old building dating back to 1662, which still shows in the interior decorative balconies. Salsa Deluxe is a popular event. All three rooms of Odeon club will have their own style of music: Salsa, classics and swingbeat and a new room dedicated to the rising to fame style of bachata. The Salsa Deluxe calls itself ‘classy’ and ‘chic’. There is also a salsa workshop and a salsa dance show.
Salsa Deluxe nights are organised by The Dance Office. Keep informed through their facebook page.
6. Café Hesp, Sundays
Café Hesp is a traditional Dutch brown bar, located in a beautiful old building along the river Amstel. There is a large sunny terrace with river side views. On Sundays, live salsa bands play inside the café. It can get quite busy. In summer, there is an outside salsa festival: Salsa aan de Amstel (free entrance).
7. MonteCristo, every day
MonteCristo is a bar and restaurant at the Marie Heinekenplein, the entrance to the Pijp neighbourood. Apart from home made cocktails and South American And Caribbean food, there are also daily dancing lessons of salsa, merengue, zouk and bachata. Every Monday and Tuesday there is a free salsa dancing workshop.
8. Sao Paulo Café, every Thursday
Sao Paulo Café is located at the Amstelveensweg 23, in between the end of Overtoon and Vondelpark. Every Thursday there is Salsa Réunion Night from 22.00 to 1.00. Entrance is free. Every 3rd Friday of the Month, you can go there for the Havana Night, the best Cuban salsa and latin mix. There are workshops as well. Entrance is
From September the Badcuyp, a music venue in the neighbourhood of the Pijp, organises regular latin nights.Every first Friday of the month Cuba takes the stage. At Fiesta Cubana you can dance to the modern Cuban salsa called timba. Badcuyp is a stage that offers opportunity for starting musicians to play, mostly jazz. It’s a intimate venue with a bar and restaurant downstairs.
10. Palet Congress Center
Palet is a large venue at Jan van Galenstraat (Amsterdam West). At Palet regular dance parties are held with music like salsa LA, mambo, zouk, salsa cubana and bachata. The Caribbean/Tropical theme is also popular with music and dances like merengue, soca, kuduro, bachata, reggaeton, sur, ant. The parties are well organised with special dance acts performances and workshops and stands.
11. Live salsa music at Café Alto, Tuesdays
The Conjunto Amsterdam play salsa and latin jazz every Tuesday at jazz café Alto. Not much space to dance though.
Cafe/ restaurant Medina organises a Latin Salsa Night with a free salsa workshop. Every last Saturday of the month.
13. Copa Cabana party
Many Amsterdam salsa dance schools organise regular salsa nights. Students come to practise their moves, but outsiders are always more than welcome to take the lead.
Brazilian dance school Brasazouk and Swing latinno teach at Brasa Dance Studios/Melodyline, a music and dance centre at Overamstel. The large venue consists of studios for bands to practice but they also have a large ballroom with a wooden floor, a bar and a dance area.
Popular and famous are the Copa Cabana parties, where dancing is focused on Salsa and Brasilian Zouk. The Copa Cabana parties are held every first and third Friday of the month. Melodyline is located at an industrial site at Over Amstel (by metro 50/51, free parking on weekends).
14. Baila Si!
Baila Si! Organises a salsa party every second and last Friday of the month. The parties are at Don Bosco, a youth centre in Amsterdam East (Watergraafsmeer). The crowd consists mainly of students coming to practise.
Amsterdam salsa dance school Sabrosa organises Amsterdam salsa parties twice a month, usually in Muiderpoorttheater and Werktheater.