Anyone visiting Curacao, can not miss the bustling Pietermaai district. This historic Caribbean city district is emerging and seems to continue to grow for several years. Certainly in popularity!
Here you will find historical restored monuments and where free-thinking entrepreneurs have gratefully moved into a vibrant city area, to further grow this piece of Curacao. The street scene is defined by locals, students, artists, tourists and other bon vivants. Within Pietermaai therefore you will encounter many people dancing, eating, drinking and just enjoying themselves.
Here you’ll definitely meet people from all levels of society whom in their own way will do good to the charm of the many establishments. The great variety of typical restaurants, bars and hotels create a lively atmosphere that certainly remains not unnoticed in the evening.
Until not too long ago Pietermaai was subject to heavy renovations that clearly have ensured the pull of self-employed workers, which has increased drastically. These changes are part of the district’s rich history and have contributed to the district has been transformed into a hotspot.
The image above shows Pietermaai as it used to be back in the day. The one below is a modern impression.
The district Pietermaai originated in the late 17th century as a suburb of Punda. The city center was overflowing during the first settlement, so they fled to the ‘sleep area’. This areas at the time was named after the master ‘Pieter de Meij’ who settled in Curacao in 1674.
The city attracted wealthy merchants which resulted in impressive mansions built in the Dutch architectural styles from the 18th and 19th centuries. In the mid-19th century, after the city walls were demolished, Pietermaai became a center for ideas, business and culture. The theaters and small craft industries added to the appeal of the district which today still serve as inspiration for the dynamic atmosphere.
Because of the authentically crafted buildings with monumental characteristics Willemstad is listed on the UNESCO World Heritage List.
(Video credits go to the Curacao Tourist Board)