Rotterdam presents SME action programme

Rotterdam presents SME action programme

ROTTERDAM, 22 March 2023 – City Council is making a concerted effort to support entrepreneurs.


As of today, Rotterdam has an SME action programme. This morning it was presented by economics alderman Robert Simons. The aim of the programme: to help 10,000 entrepreneurial challenges with good municipal services and practical tools to make Rotterdam entrepreneurs future-proof.


During the past period, entrepreneurs were asked what they need. The action programme focuses on this: making plans and policies based on the entrepreneur, clear online and offline information and communication and tackling the office jungle. Obviously, entrepreneurs do not want to be sent from pillar to post. The plan also focuses on helping entrepreneurs to be future-proof because energy transition and raw material scarcity are major challenges for them.


Alderman Robert Simons (Economy, among other things): “Rotterdam's SMEs deserve an action programme that is fully tailored to their needs. After all, SMEs are the backbone of Rotterdam's economy. With 230,000 jobs, the 20,000 SMEs provide 60% of employment in Rotterdam. I am happy that this plan is in place, and I hope we can help many entrepreneurs further with what they are so good at: doing business.”


Better services

To improve services, there will be a team for complex questions, among other things. In this way, the municipality will ensure that entrepreneurial questions are dealt with quickly and integrally. There will be an SME test for new policies and complex permits, and products will be made SME-proof. will become even more of a central location for information from the municipality and partners, and a live chat will be available for employees to ask questions during office hours. With the 1-entry principle and better cooperation behind the scenes, entrepreneurs will be able to avoid being redirected through the municipal organisation with their questions.


Future-proof entrepreneurship

To make entrepreneurs more future-proof, the municipality deploys subsidy coaches, who can help them find their way to subsidies and financing. Rotterdam is also working hard to ensure that Rotterdam SMEs take part in international trade missions. The success of the 'klusbus' (handyman bus) providing energy-saving measures will be continued: other shopping areas will soon be served as well. In addition, entrepreneurs can apply for sustainability vouchers for an energy or roof scan worth €800.

Diego's rebrands as gourmet street food restaurant

Diego's rebrands as gourmet street food restaurant

ROTTERDAM, 20 March 2023 – Diego's rebrands as a gourmet street food restaurant as Rotterdam's king of burgers is forging a new path.


It was the listing about his surprising flavour combinations in the famous Gault Millau guide that confirmed Diego Buik's feelings and further fuelled his ambitions. It was time to take his restaurant in Rotterdam's Kop van Zuid district to the next level. “My great passion will always be creating tantalising burgers. But I remain at heart a chef. I missed the diversity in my menu.”

After four years of successfully serving his famous burgers at Diego's Burgers restaurant, the burger king decided it was time for a change: “We have tackled the interior and given it a mature and timeless look. We also enriched the menu with modern dishes such as a salmon ceviche and updated the wine list. But, of course, burgers will also keep their place on the menu.”


Diego's Rotterdam pivots from burgers to gourmet street foodDiego's Rotterdam pivots from burgers to gourmet street food


Gourmet street food

The new Diego's is a place where guests can enjoy gourmet street food. The emphasis is on small dishes designed for sharing. Thus, diners can choose between dishes such as crispy Peking duck, salmon from the Konro grill or a modern take on the classic steak tartare, enriched with sesame mayonnaise and herring caviar. Yet, Diego's speciality does not fade into the background. Four of his signature burgers are still on the menu for burger fans.

“Besides the new shareable dishes, of course, we are not saying goodbye to burgers. Upon request, we now also serve them cut in half so that burgers are easy to share as well. But guests who come just for the burgers are of course still very welcome,” explains Diego excitedly about the new direction he has taken.


Diego's presents new revamped interiorDiego's presents new revamped interior


About Diego Buik

Diego Buik is the chef of restaurant Diego's – formerly Diego's Burgers – in Rotterdam. He is known for his experimental burgers and surprising flavour combinations, which at the time won him the 'Best Burger in Rotterdam' award. Moreover, in 2017, he also set the record of 'World's Most Expensive Burger.' This burger, made with gold leaf, caviar, and lobster had a price tag of a whopping €2050 and even made it onto the menu of Burgerhub in Ryiad, Saudi Arabia.


Diego Buik, check at Diego's in RotterdamDiego Buik, check at Diego's in Rotterdam

The James Hotel Rotterdam is celebrating its fifth anniversary

The James Hotel Rotterdam is celebrating its fifth anniversary

ROTTERDAM, 20 March 2023 – The James Hotel is celebrating its fifth anniversary and celebrating with its guests. Everyone will be welcomed in a special way, including a live DJ, a red carpet and lots of proseccos.


Right in the centre of Rotterdam is the three-star hotel The James. Exactly five years ago, new life was breathed into an old, empty office building on Aert van Nesstraat. James was born and the centre of Rotterdam was treated to a chic yet modern spot. Comfortable beds, a prime location and a beautiful view transformed the hotel into a crowd favourite. In just five years, the still somewhat, new hotel has managed to place itself within the ranks of Rotterdam's established establishments. “A fantastic recognition,” is how General Manager Michiel puts it. 

A chic welcome 

The hotel is transforming into a special party venue on 29 April for its anniversary. And while the hotel is known for pampering its guests during their stay, Team James is now going the extra mile. So, everyone will be festively welcomed by a classic host, the one and only James, in the decorated lobby, after entering via the red carpet. There, a cold, sparkling glass of prosecco awaits guests and a DJ provides appropriate party tunes. “They come into the spotlight. It's never about us, always about the guest. They need to feel the party atmosphere,” Michiel reveals. Under the motto 'picture, or it didn't happen', a professional photobooth will be on hand to capture all the revelry and, of course, guests will take home their favourite snapshots.

Not only at the reception is James' birthday celebrated extensively, the party also continues in the room with a delicious cake and gold-coloured party hats. Of course, a birthday is only truly complete when the whole party joins in the celebration. “The staff is one of the most important factors for The James and, actually, our greatest source of pride. Most people have been with the hotel for five years and have made it what it is,” Michiel explains. The entire James team will therefore also be given a golden touch by means of a festive uniform and will be fully put in the limelight during the anniversary. 


Free coffee and tea for passers-by

The James not only wants to put its guests in the limelight during their birthday celebrations, the whole city gets to celebrate! “One of our biggest USPs is the city. People come here to discover Rotterdam. The James is like your good friend in a strange city. Here you come home, and we help you discover all the hidden gems,” said the manager. Therefore, on the occasion of their fifth anniversary, the hotel also wants to give something back to Rotterdam. From a classic, fully styled Piaggio in front of the hotel, shoppers will be provided with barista-worthy coffee and tea. 



Despite the hotel having been a favourite with locals and getaway lovers for five years, the James sees the need to continuously innovate. This year, for instance, the rooms are even undergoing a real 'party lift'. As Michiel explains: “Restyling keeps things exciting. It ensures that you can come back here again and again and experience the 'wow' feeling every time. We can already give you a little hint: soon, guests will not only be able to enjoy a phenomenal view from their comfortable hotel bed, but will also be able to admire all of Rotterdam while taking a bath.” 

Residential and commercial area Müllerpier Rotterdam nears completion

Residential and commercial area Müllerpier Rotterdam nears completion

ROTTERDAM, 20 March 2023 – Area developers AM and Blauwhoed (Müllerpier C.V.) mark the topping out of Dok & Kaai residential and commercial area on the Müllerpier in Rotterdam.


The modern building consists of a total of 40 homes in various types for a broad audience and is uniquely situated on the waterfront of the Nieuwe Maas river and within walking distance of the city centre. Nearby Dok & Kaai, residential tower STACK is also under construction. These two projects are the final components of the Müllerpier area development. AM and Blauwhoed have jointly developed and realised approximately 600 homes within this area development in eleven residential buildings.


“We are proud that, thanks to the good collaboration of the municipality, AM, Blauwhoed, and KCAP, the Müllerpier has become a distinctive urban district of Rotterdam with a mix of living and working that can serve as an example for the redevelopment of other city harbours,” says Gilbert Kokenberg, Director of Projects at AM.


Dok & Kaai at Müllerpier Rotterdam reachest highest pointDok & Kaai at Müllerpier Rotterdam reachest highest point


Dok & Kaai

The Dok & Kaai plan is located at the robust river location Müllerpier, where the harbour's past is still visible. The complex consists of 31 three-room apartments, three two-storey maisonettes, and six three-storey single-family homes. Some of the apartments and maisonettes are situated along the Müllerkade and offer expansive views of the Nieuwe Maas river and the Euromast. On the other side, single-family homes are located on a quiet residential street or adjacent to the neighbourhood park. The remaining apartments overlook the central square, and from the higher floors, also the Sint-Jobshaven. All homes have been sold. KCAP is responsible for the design of the homes. BAM Wonen is in charge of the construction. According to the schedule, Dok & Kaai will be completed in the last quarter of 2023.


Dok & Kaai and STACK at Müllerpier RotterdamDok & Kaai and STACK at Müllerpier Rotterdam


Transformation of Müllerpier to a Modern Urban District

Müllerpier is one of the piers in the Lloyd Quarter and represents a historic part of Rotterdam that has been transformed into a modern urban district. The combination of maritime history and modern architecture makes the Müllerpier a unique and dynamic place to live and work. With the completion of the last two residential blocks, Dok & Kaai and residential tower STACK, the Müllerpier will soon be fully developed.

CityLab010 2023 underway! Apply now with a good idea

CityLab010 2023 underway! Apply now with a good idea

ROTTERDAM, 16 March 2023 - Rotterdammers with initiatives to make the city greener, more social or safer can apply again for Citylab010. For the ninth time, Rotterdammers have a chance to win a start-up budget of up to €50,000. Applications are now open.


CityLab010 is looking for people with an innovative idea for the city, and who really want to work on it. If they wish, they will receive advice through a support program and a network of partners in the city to help realize their idea. The support program starts now. There is time until September 1 to develop and submit the project plan. This is followed by an application for a start-up budget at the subsidy desk of the Municipality of Rotterdam. Ultimately, a City Jury of twelve committed Rotterdammers will judge all applications and award the start-up budgets.


Alderman Robert Simons (Economy, among other things) calls on Rotterdammers with a good idea to apply: “In recent years, hundreds of good ideas have already been implemented thanks to CityLab010's start-up budget. And I still see so many Rotterdammers with new ideas to help others and make the city even better. Sign up!”


In the past year, funds went to such projects as:

• Solar Carpet: with roll-up solar panels, sports fields can be used to generate energy when there are no matches or training sessions.
• Fabulous Fungi: textile paint based on fungi instead of harmful synthetics.

You can find more initiatives at:


Participate in the city or neighbourhood

Rotterdam offers many opportunities to participate in the city or neighbourhood. Not only through CityLab010 but also, for example, by submitting a residents' initiative or taking up a Right 2 Challenge. In all cases, residents get to work on an idea themselves, with the municipality providing assistance in the form of subsidies or a network, for example.

More information? Go to

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