Russia's Hermitage unveils branch in Dutch capital

The famous State Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg, which houses three million art objects, opened an offshoot in Amsterdam. A former nursing home on the river Amstel, dating back to the 17th century, has been transformed into a state of the art facility with exhibition spaces, restaurant, library, and study center. Supported by the Dutch national lottery and corporations such as Heinecken and Phillips, the electronics giant, the Hermitage Amsterdam kicks off it schedule with At the Russian Court, an exhibition of 1,800 treasures—ranging from extravagant gowns for tsarinas to iconic paintings of martyrs—that illustrate the opulence of Russian royalty in 19th century St. Petersburg.