#SupportYourLocals | Dental practice Tandartspraktijk NDSM
In our #SupportYourLocals column, we visit our neighbors at the NDSM wharf one by one to hear their stories and, where necessary, support them. For this very special edition we go to the west side of NDSM, where a brand new dental practice has settled itself.
Amidst all the new construction that is emerging from the ground on the west side of the NDSM wharf, a necessary facility has also made its appearance: Dental Practice NDSM (Mt. Lincolnweg 12, next to the Bagels and Beans). Usually we speak (mostly) hospitality entrepreneurs for this column on and around NDSM, but since the owners of the practice Anneline and Adriaan have considerable entrepreneurial blood, they also fit well into the picture of local companies at NDSM. With my notebook under my arm I step into the building. I am immediately greeted kindly by Adriaan who leads me to the back of the practice and offers me a cup of French-pressed coffee. As soon as Anneline joins us we start talking.
“We had been thinking for a long time that we wanted to start a practice together,” says Adriaan when I ask how the practice came about, “then we looked at some things and slowly you get a better idea of what you want.”
“We were also looking for something with character,” adds Anneline, “not a dentist factory with a lot of chairs where you never really know who you have an appointment with and people come in and out all the time. We think it is very important that everyone feels welcome here. That you don’t get the feeling when you come in here that you’re just a number. We actually like to get to know patients a little better, so that we have more personal contact.” Adriaan nods in agreement. “Anneline and I know each other well and we both have a lot of experience in different types of practices. This way you will find out during your career what works and what doesn’t. Slowly the idea came to set up something together, but we never had a moment when we both really had time to fully immerse ourselves in it.” “Until corona started and all dental practices had to close,” Anneline continues, “then suddenly we both had time and from that moment on it all went very fast.”
I then ask Adriaan and Anneline what they thought when they first came to see NDSM as a location for their practice. “I mainly knew the area from the festivals, art and events; I’ve never really noticed other aspects of this part of the city. So much has changed here in the last two years. When we came here, to this building we could already see from the outside that this could be it. It felt good right away, we both had that.”
We have also tried to reflect the industrial character of NDSM in our space
“You notice that people are very friendly here,” Adriaan says when I ask whether there is a difference between being a dentist at NDSM and in other places in Amsterdam. “People are more relaxed here than in other parts of the city, less hectic,” adds Anneline, “there is a kind of peace here, the atmosphere is very friendly. You also see a nice range of different people. Most of our patients are starters, which makes sense when you look at all the new construction and urban development here. Yet other Northerners also come to our practice, which makes it special here, no day is the same.”
“What I really like is that there is always a lot of activity in this neighborhood from visitors, who just go their own way and sit somewhere to have a picnic in the public space,” says Adriaan, “it’s a really interesting piece of Amsterdam. I myself live close to the Bajeskwartier, which is also such a historic district that is now getting a new destination. A lot is of course being developed in such an area, but the tint of the Bijlmer Bajes will remain. Just as you see here, whichever way you look at it, you will always know that this place was once an industrial area, a shipyard.”
“We have also tried to reflect the industrial character of NDSM in our space,” Anneline continues, “we have opted for high window frames, a high ceiling with visible pipes and tubes. The shipyard has also been featured in our logo. We thought it was important that the identity of the yard was reflected in our practice, that we fit in with the neighbourhood.”
I also ask Adriaan and Anneline for their opinion on the urban development at the NDSM wharf. “I really like that development,” says Adriaan, “I kow some people may not agree with me, but I like the increased diversity. You do have to adapt to the heritage and atmosphere of a place, but that’s what makes it interesting. You need to adapt your treatment plan and goal to what people want. So sometimes you see a mouth that makes you think: you can do anything with it, but if there’s someone around it who says they don’t want to do anything about it, then you have to see what fits within the comfort of such a patient.”
“The wishes vary quite a bit among the different people who come here,” adds Anneline, “I really like that. The old Northerner who comes into the practice here has very different wishes than the starter who has just bought his first house here. The diversity in the patients who come here is what makes working here special.”
Our conversation comes to an end, and the love and care that Adriaan and Anneline bear for their practice can also be felt on my side of the table. “Starting your own practice is a very big commitment,” Adriaan continues, “it is much less non-committal and you notice that you wear various different hats than just that of a dentist.”
“Certainly,” says Anneline, “it is really a bit like your child that you are going to raise now, but we do it with great pleasure!”
Dental practice NDSM is open for registrations, so if you are still looking for a dentist, grab your chance! Adriaan and Anneline also like to work with children, so you are welcome to come with the whole family.