We finally know where the Eurovision Song Contest is going to take place next year. NPO, Avrotros, NOS and the EBU have chosen Rotterdam as the city to take the honourable job for next year. Their venue will be the Ahoy Arena.
An end to the race
The race to host the Eurovision Song Contest was a long one. A day after Duncan Laurence’s victory in Tel Aviv, eight cities already offered to host the show. Eventually, several of them withdrew again, like Amsterdam, and we ended up with a bidding race with five bids coming in.
The cities Rotterdam, Maastricht, Den Bosch, Utrecht and Arnhem decided to properly go for the hosting job. After a short while of reviewing the bidbooks, the organisers confirmed that Rotterdam and Maastricht were the final two. The organising committee, led by Executive Producer Sietse Bakker, visited both bidding cities. Shortly before making the decision, they asked the cities to supply more information, indicating that it was a close race between Rotterdam and Maastricht.
Just this week, it seemed the official website Eurovision.tv accidentally leaked Rotterdam as the host city. A page appeared on their website, titled “Rotterdam 2020”. After enquiries from several media, EBU denied the leak and instead claimed it was an honest mistake. A similar page was soon launched for “Maastricht 2020”.
Big city charm
Rotterdam is the second largest city in the Netherlands. It has approximately 600,000 inhabitants. After being rebuilt after World War II, it took on the image of a modern city. The Rotterdam skyline has multiple skyscrapers and the Erasmus Bridge as landmarks.
There’s plenty to do in Rotterdam, even though it’s not commonly seen as a popular tourist destination yet. Shopping is a great option with Zuidplein, close to Ahoy and the Koopgoot. A few years ago, a market hall was opened with small food stands and international shopping available. It suits the city, which is praised for its multicultural identity. Especially Indonesian and Surinamese are prominent.
In terms of venue, Rotterdam know what they’re doing. Ahoy has hosted the MTV EMAs twice before and organises concerts on a very regular basis. The Junior Eurovision Song Contest took place there back in 2007. Together with the Ziggo Dome in Amsterdam, it’s seen as the best concert hall in the country. The estimation is that around 12,000 people can fit in there.
Duncan Laurence revealed the host city in the video below: