|Venue:||Paleis voor Volksvlijt – Palace of Popular Diligence, or National Industry, Fredericksplein, Amsterdam – 8,000 sq m (86,111 sq ft)|
This event had a number of competitors that year with shows held in Philadelphia, Bayonne, Malta, Lucknow and Calcutta – and two working class events in north and south London.
The Dutch physician and city planner visited London’s Crystal Palace and saw an opportunity to enhance the reputation of Amsterdam with one of its own. He founded the Vereeniging voor Volksvlijt (Association for Popular Diligence) with the mission of constructing this.
It was designed in glass and cast iron by the local architect Cornelis Outshoom and completed in 1864. It consisted of a great hall with gallery, four adjoining halls, two refreshment halls, two upper halls and a basement. It was 6m taller than the Royal Palace.
The palace proved disappointing for exhibitions and thus became an entertainment venue for ballets, concerts, opera and theatre. It was destroyed by fire in 1929 and never reconstructed, today its site is occupied by the Central Bank of the Netherlands
There is little data about this first show in Amsterdam, yet a RAI press releases, refer to this as the first in the city, and the first organised by RAI was at the palace in 1895. The Amsterdam vision for its future is expressed in a 2016 event.