One of the most famous paintings in the permanent collection of the Mauritshuis museum is “Girl with the pearl earring”, the masterpiece by Dutch painter Johannes Veermer drawn to the world’s attention by Tracy Chevalier’s novel and Peter Webber’s film.
However, it is not only the famous paintings from the Dutch Golden Age but the museum itself that deserves attention if you want to add a touch of culture to your holidays. The building was recently renovated and expanded on the basis of plans by Hans van Heeswijk Architects.
The architects doubled the amount of museum space in a project that is invisible from the outside, built entirely underground so that it would not alter the historic monumental appearance of the Mauritshuis even while offering plenty of space to serve the museum’s many visitors. Natural light comes in through skylights in the street to light up the underground spaces. The plan by architect Hans van Heeswijk permitted creation of a link with the new museum wing in the nearby Art Déco building housing the Sociëteit de Witte. Hans van Heeswijk’s contemporary architecture becomes the trait d'union between the Dutch classicism of the Mauritshuis (1699) and the 1930s Art Déco style.