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Lion statues at Amstel hotel restored with PU board material from Rampf
Eight lion statues that once decorated the iconic Amstel hotel in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, mysteriously disappeared and were never found again. Until today, no one knows how, why, or when the stone statues were removed. Thanks to extensive historical detective work in the Amsterdam city archives, the tooling and composites experts at the Dutch company Scabro, as well as a polyurethane board material from Rampf, the lion statues could be restored and returned to their original locations on top of the building.
“Grand Dame” of Amsterdam
The five-star hotel InterContinental Amstel – also known as the “Grand Dame” of Amsterdam – first opened its doors on 27 April 1867. When it was recently decided to refurbish its roof and façade in full accordance with the original architecture, the Amsterdam city archives had to be studied for historic images.
It was on one of these old photographs that someone noticed the eight lion statues – and that they were not there anymore. For several months, an in-depth research was conducted, but their whereabouts could not be determined.
Biljoen lion to the rescue
As the lions were seen as a substantial part of the historic building, it was decided to manufacture the lions from scratch. Fortunately, a replica of the Amstel lions was found at Biljoen castle near the Dutch town of Velp, which served as a model for the 1.6 meter high statues. The responsibility for manufacturing the replicas was given to the mould construction and composites tooling experts at Scabro, a company based in Katwijk aan Zee in mid-western Netherlands, and its customers Doornekamp Woodspecials and Jules Dock Shaping.
“We are renowned for both our capabilities and the fact that we only work together with the best craftsmen and material suppliers. This guarantees for first-class results”, said Jaap Ruwaard, Technology & Sales Manager at Scabro.
Using the CAD data from the Biljoen lion, the replicas were milled from Rampf’s styling board Raku Tool SB-0240, then painted and specially coated. “Our polyurethane material is fast and easy to machine, guarantees for a very fine surface finish, and is able to withstand abusive environments – which is, of course, a very important feature, as the replica lions had to be handled during transport and then installed by crane onto the top of the building”, noted Markus Halter, Regional Sales Manager at Rampf Tooling Solutions.
According to Scabro and Rampf, both companies place great value on a trustful relationship and open communication. This year, the partnership is set to reap even more success, as Scabro is moving to a new location that encompasses, amongst others, an 80 m2 laboratory and a spacious warehouse. “We work very closely together with the experts of our partners and regularly invite them to our company to impart their theoretical knowledge and practical skills to customers. In our new facility we can further expand this special service”, Ruwaard pointed out.