Embracing beer with open arms

13 June 2019 | Lucy Bishop

To celebrate Neighbours’ Week (17th – 23rd June) this year Amstel is opening “The Open Arms”, a one-of-a-kind pub near Tower Bridge made entirely out of fence panels.

Neighbours’ Week is a campaign created by Amstel to encourage people within the community to come together and get to know one another. Perhaps we’re too busy with our daily lives to spare a moment to get to know the people around us and maybe we should take a moment to connect and build bridges with the people in our communities.

The creation of ‘The Open Arms’ is part of London’s Festival of Architecture that runs throughout June. Each year there’s a theme that each business should represent, and this year’s theme is ‘boundaries’. Amstel has incorporated the theme into its display by using fence panels to create the bar as people see them – as a barrier that divides and distances neighbours from one another. Amstel has flipped this on its head by using the fence panels to create a space that brings people together, your local pub.

‘The Open Arms’ is part of Amstel’s larger ‘Bridges on Bridges’ campaign featuring Jeff Bridges and set in the city of bridges; Amsterdam. Focusing on connectivity and togetherness the campaign consists of a giant Jeff Bridges in the River Amstel – the river in Amsterdam for which the brand was named – talking about how we should all bridge our differences between each other and encourage people to get together in their communities and get to know one another. In the video, Jeff mentions that “bridges allow people to come together, find their common ground” which in this modern day is crucial as people are so engrossed in technology that they’re unaware of the people surrounding them.

The campaign has a strong connection to how Amstel was born back in 1870 as the founders of Amstel, two friends, felt the beer available to them in Amsterdam simply wasn’t good enough, so they created Amstel to share a better beer together.

At the heart of every community is your local pub, and with the creation of Neighbour’s Week, you no longer need to wait for the next local event or street party to connect with your neighbours. The brand director of Heineken, which owns the Amstel brand, encourages people to ‘leave their divisions and differences at the door and focus on getting on together regardless of their background, and embrace that richness and diversity’ and to get down to your local next week to celebrate.