The dok Library Concept Center of Delft, The Netherlands – makes me want to hang out all day

Written by Hanna Marie Roseen

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This library in city of Delft in the Netherlands does not fit the image of what many people think of libraries.

The decor and use of space is so creative and fun. The space is both cozy and bright, hip but not too modern.

Many of the bookshelves are made of old furniture like dressers and armoires, adding to the coziness and whimsy of the library. It makes me want to hang out there all day, working or hanging out with friends. You could do both too, as the library is open until 10 or 11. Once a month they even host an evening concert.

One of the entrances opens to a cafe with plenty of seating for individuals and groups. This is one of two cafes, the other on the floor above. Thursdays they also host a dinner cooked by a local chef, with food from their ethnic heritage.

The library shares its space with a local arts nonprofit, so there are music rooms available to rent, a dance studio, and an art studio. However, I am not sure of non-library members are able to rent the spaces. The library and the non-profit seem to happily coexist, each benefitting from the others’ work.

The Dutch love and focus on their children, so it is no surprise there is a whole floor dedicated to children, broken up into different age sections. There are so many thoughtful details like a step stool so kiddos can check books out themselves, seats inside bookshelves, and a subject based and color-coded classification system for the books the library itself developed.


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