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Van Gogh Museum welcomes 1,000,000th visitor
Milou Halbesma (Division manager Communications, Marketing & Development) presents a bouquet of sunflowers to Jennifer Noble from the United States of America, the millionth visitor of the Van Gogh Museum in 2016. Photo: Jan-Kees Steenman.


AMSTERDAM.- The millionth visitor to the Van Gogh Museum in 2016 was today given a special celebratory welcome. The milestone was reached three weeks earlier than in 2015, the jubilee year in which the museum attracted the record number of 1.9 million visitors. Around 13% more culture enthusiasts visited the museum in the first half of 2016 compared to the same period last year. Vincent van Gogh, the new Entrance Hall, the museum’s permanent collection and the programme of exhibitions continue to represent a strong attraction to museum visitors from the Netherlands and much further afield.

"I am very pleased with the sustained interest in our museum. Every day, we witness how the life story and art of Vincent van Gogh continue to fascinate great numbers of people. It remains special that this is translated into so many people actually making the effort to visit the museum in person", explains Axel Rüger – Director of the Van Gogh Museum.

Museums play a significant role in Amsterdam’s appeal. Nearly 80% of tourists visits a museum during their stay, and the city’s cultural offerings top the rankings for both domestic and international visitors. "Across the board, there has been a 2.5% increase in museum visits in the first four months of 2016. It is good to see that the Van Gogh Museum continues to structurally invest in the building, the programming and its visitors. It’s an approach that is clearly bearing fruit", says Frans van der Avert – CEO of Amsterdam Marketing.

Success is the sum of factors
Several factors underlie the sustained interest in the museum. The extensive online global fan base, the intensive campaign for the 2015 jubilee year, the museum’s international activities and the opening of the new Entrance Hall all improve the museum’s visibility. Extended opening hours in peak periods contribute to an improved distribution of visitors, while the monthly Vincent on Friday programme is attracting an increasing number of visitors from Amsterdam and the surrounding area. The museum is also benefitting from the sustained popularity of Amsterdam. Statistics obtained by Amsterdam Marketing emphasise the increase in popularity of the city.

Distribution of visitors and evening opening
In the first half of 2015, 19% of all visitors ordered an admission ticket online. In the same period in 2016, nearly 26% of the museum visitors opted for direct access to the museum by ordering their ticket online. Offering admission tickets online is one of the methods used to improve the distribution of visitors throughout the day. The extended opening hours in peak periods also enable the museum to distribute visitors more effectively. The museum will once again remain open longer in the coming summer months: until 19:00 from Sunday to Thursday, until 22:00 on Fridays and until 21:00 on Saturdays.

Visitors from all seven continents
Interest in the art and life of Vincent van Gogh continues to grow. This has resulted in growing numbers of visitors to the museum, but also in an expanding online fan base. The museum reached more than 5,500,000 Van Gogh enthusiasts (+200,000) via Google+, and the online Van Gogh community on Facebook now has 1,186,000 members, an increase of 300,000. It is not only international culture fans that are making their way to Museumplein to visit the Van Gogh Museum’s permanent collection and exhibitions: residents of the Netherlands – 1 in 5 visitors is Dutch – are also (re)discovering Vincent van Gogh.





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