• The Netherlands
The Netherlands, a small country (41,526 sq km) in northwestern Europe that faces the North Sea. The Netherlands is often called Holland, but Holland is really the name of only the northwestern part of the country. About half the land in The Netherlands lies at or below sea level. Much of this land has been reclaimed from the sea. The Dutch built dikes around swampy or flooded land and then pumped the water out. The pumping was originally done with windmills, but today electric pumps are used.
The Netherlands has few natural resources, and its lands are poor for agriculture. However, the Dutch people have struggled against these obstacles and have made The Netherlands one of the wealthiest countries in the world. Foreign trade is the mainstay of the Dutch economy. Several major rivers of Europe flow through The Netherlands into the sea. These rivers and the country’s location on the North Sea have helped make it a great trading nation.
The Netherlands is one of the most densely populated countries in the world. About 90% of its people (17 mil) live in cities. Amsterdam (pop. 800,000) is the capital and largest city. The seat of government is in The Hague (pop. 500,000). Rotterdam (pop. 600,000) is the major Dutch port and the country’s second largest city. The official language of The Netherlands is Dutch, which is spoken throughout the country.
This small country has made major contributions to art, literature, and science. The 17th century is considered the Golden Age in Dutch history. During this time Dutch artists Rembrandt, Jan Vermeer, and Frans Hals painted masterpieces, and Dutch scientists made startling discoveries with the powerful microscopes and telescopes they built.
The Kingdom of The Netherlands was established in 1815. At first, it included the whole of the Low Countries. Belgium revolted in 1830 and became independent, and Luxembourg became fully separate from The Netherlands in 1890. The Kingdom of The Netherlands today includes, besides The Netherlands proper, the Netherlands Antilles and Aruba.
The Dutch are associated with the colour orange, after the name of the royal Orange Nassau family. Her Majesty Queen Beatrix has been the head of state since 1980. Her eldest son Prince Willem-Alexander, the Prince of Orange, is the first in line to the throne and has been an IOC member since 1998.
• Eindhoven / Veldhoven
The city of Eindhoven (pop. 250,000) lies in southern Netherlands, some 125 km from Amsterdam, in Noord-Brabant (North Brabant) province, on the Dommel River. After the founding of an electrical industry in 1891, the city developed into a large industrial and railroad center. Other industries include the manufacture of motor vehicles and tobacco products. The Eindhoven University of Technology (1956) is here. The community received a charter in 1232. Eindhoven was heavily damaged during World War II (1939-1945).
Eindhoven offers a wide spectrum of facilities in the areas of shopping, nightlife and performing arts. Culture is diverse - the Van Abbe museum is famous for its modern art collection.
Eindhoven ranks among the world's top cities in first-rate technology, design, lighting and sports. It is sometimes called the 'City of Light', because the headquarters of giant 'Philips' are here! Other international top companies work together in the state-of-the-art High Tech Campus, the Dutch version of Silicon Valley. Design from Eindhoven has also achieved world fame. Students from all corners of the globe come to study at the Design Academy and at the Industrial Design department of the University of Technology. Eindhoven is dedicated to excellence.
• Venue: NH Conference Centre Koningshof
The venue of the championships is NH Conference Centre Koningshof. The Centre provides ample space for all tournament operations, as well as accommodation to the participants.
The NH Conference Centre Koningshof is situated in Veldhoven, just 5km south of Eindhoven, and it is surrounded by beautiful lush greenery. The Centre is the largest and most centrally-located conference hotel in the Benelux area with more than 6000 m² of modern meeting-room space and 509 hotel rooms. The Koningshof has a swimming pool, sports hall, squash courts, solarium and saunas, fitness room, restaurants and bars, and outdoor all-weather tennis and beach volleyball courts. The Genderstein golf club is just a five-minute walk away. Busses – which stop in front of the hotel – connect to Eindhoven city center.