What happened to André’s huge decor of the Viennese castle and the golden carriage?
A local paper from the eastern part of the Netherlands (De Stentor) gave the answer. Translation by Ineke, edited by Alice Leung. Photos: De Stentor, Harry Siwes and from our own archive.
De Stentor, February 7, 2024. By Arjan de Bogt Trader from Almelo sells André Rieu's golden carriage: 'I needed the storage space' A minibar in the shape of a steam locomotive or an Eiffel Tower of 2.50 meters (3 yrds) high. Trader Harry Siwes from Almelo (NL town) can't imagine it being so crazy that it is for sale in his antiques and curiosities shop "Nostalgiepalast" in Nordhorn (town just across the German border). The latest offer? André Rieu’s golden carriage. How he got it, that is a special story. The carriage is richly decorated with gilded ornaments and gold epaulettes. Shining lanterns serve as decorative lighting. The high wheels, the leather roof, the steps for the two-seater sofa; this is a carriage for special moments. But owner Harry Siwes didn't have those moments. “It had been in storage here for a while.” Hennie van der Most Two years ago, the Almelo dealer Hennie van der Most, bought the carriage that belonged to the violinist and 'king of the waltz' André Rieu. Siwes happened to bump into the carriage. “I was near Hardenberg (NL town, warehouse) with Hennie van der Most for some trading,” he says. “Then I saw that thing in the warehouse. “Oh yes, I have that one too,” said Van der Most. I kind of liked the thing.” They started talking about the carriage. Van der Most appeared to have purchased the vehicle directly from the violinist from Maastricht, as well as the rest of the decor that Rieu used for his concerts all over the world (the castle). “Rieu had a very bad time during the corona period,” said Van der Most. I relieved him of the possessions. Van der Most was able to do something with it in his family theme park "Wonderland Kalkar" (town just across the German border). Storage space needed But trade is trade, and when Siwes expressed his interest in the carriage, a deal was struck quite quickly. For how much? He doesn't say that. “I'm a merchant, eh?” He sent a car ambulance towards Hardenberg, lifted the carriage and enjoyed the special looks of other road users on the way back to Nordhorn. Harry Siwes No, Siwes didn't drive around in it. That requires several horses and he didn't have any. Why did he have it then? For the sake of it, he says. “It is an attraction, a special thing. I actually don't want to sell it, but I need the storage space.” The price tag That's why it's online now. 'Original carriage of the Dutch violinist André Rieu', it says. 'The carriage is in very good condition and only shows minor signs of wear.' And oh yes: 'Shipping is only possible after viewing and upon payment of shipping costs'. According to Siwes, the vehicle, which can accommodate six horses, was not driven often. Rieu used it during concerts. Siwes watched the footage on YouTube. The last public appearance of the carriage was in 2021. Former owner Van der Most let his mother Marie drive it through Slagharen (NL town) in honor of her 100th birthday. The Almelo trader does not think the golden coach will be for sale for long. “I haven't advertised it yet,” he says. This belongs to the category of 'fast trade', according to him. Even though it has a hefty price tag: 35,000 euros. “Is that a good price? I do not know. It could be worth a lot more, but I need storage space".
Mr. van der Mosts' mother turned 100 in 2021.
Currently Mr. van der Most is building a new attraction park in Rotterdam, for which he'll use André's huge Viennese castle décor.
Adelaide, Australia, 2008.
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