Special history of Schmidt Optiek Rokin; The oldest optics store in the Netherlands
Schmidt's store, located at the corner of Rokin and Wijde Kapelsteeg, is the oldest optical store in our country. From its establishment in 1866 until 1948, it was managed by Johan Michaël Schmidt and his descendants. After that, others took over the management. At Schmidt they sold not only eyeglasses, but also stage and binoculars and magnifiers for every conceivable use. Before the digital age, traditional barometers, barographs and hygrometers were also part of the product line. Schmidt Optics is located in a very beautiful building, built in 1918 to a design by architect P. van Dijk. Schmidt is also one of the few in Amsterdam to still have an authentic store interior, which was executed in 1918 by J.B. Hillen, then furniture makers and upholsterers at Damrak 66 - 67. The interior is largely still in its original state, except for the three pass tables, which were made years later in the same style. In 2001, the store was surprisingly renovated under the direction of architect Manfred Kausen. The storefront is among 200 new national monuments.