Felix Meritis   1788

centre for art, culture and science

Building of the former intellectual society Felix Meritis.


Keizersgracht 324
Amsterdam Centrum

Felix Meritis

Felix Meritis in winter

Built in neo-classical style with colossal Corinthian pilasters and pediment.

The stately building on Keizersgracht was built in 1788 for the then new society called Felix Meritis for Music, Drawing, Physics, Commerce and Literature.

Its aim was to promote arts and sciences, which was a popular activity in the Age of Enlightenment.

Concert hall

Felix Meritis’ oval concert hall (renowned for its acoustics) was the main music hall in Amsterdam until late into the 19th century and enjoyed a great international reputation.

Many famous musicians performed here, including Johannes Brahms, and Robert and Clara Schumann.

The small hall of the Concertgebouw on Van Baerlestraat is a replica of this concert hall.


On the flat roof of Felix Meritis is one of the oldest observatories in Europe. For over a century, members of the Felix Meritis society studied the night sky from the Observatory and prominent guests like Arthur Schopenhauer enjoyed the panoramic view.

Cultural centre

Today, the institute is once again hosting lectures, debates, performances, film, exhibitions, and workshops around the fields of the original society: art, science and entrepreneurship.

The building also houses Shaffy Restobar , a restaurant that serves creative dishes with a Japanese twist.


Felix Meritis is located in the Canal Belt of Amsterdam on the Keizersgracht.

Other nearby attractions are Spui square, The 9 Streets, Houseboat Museum  and Grachtenmuseum.

more impressions

Felix Meritis
Felix Meritis
Felix Meritis

The inauguration of the Felix Meritis building on 31 October 1788, painted by Adriaan de Lelie

Felix Meritis
Felix Meritis

Eat & Drink

Felix Meritis

Observatory on the flat roof of the building

Felix Meritis
Felix Meritis