Over a million people visit the Anne Frank House in Amsterdam each year, but on Friday the museum opened its doors to a celebrity (19-year-old pop star Justin Bieber, to be exact) and controversy followed.
Prior to a concert in Arnhem in the Netherlands, Beiber toured the home where Anne Frank spent 2 years hiding from the Nazis during World War II and wrote her world-famous diary. However, it was his guestbook message that set the Internet on fire.
For its part, the Anne Frank House released a short statement on its Facebook page earlier today gracious for Bieber’s visit and encouraging renewed interest in the museum and Anne Frank’s story.
“The Anne Frank House was pleased to welcome Justin Bieber to the Anne Frank House last Friday. We think it is very positive that he took the time and effort to visit our museum. He was very interested in the story of Anne Frank and stayed for over an hour. We hope that his visit will inspire his fans to learn more about her life and hopefully read the diary.”
Controversy aside, if you haven’t visited the Anne Frank House, it’s an intimate, moving experience to step behind the bookshelf into the secret annex.
If you feel inspired to plan a trip to Amsterdam, Bourdain’s travel guide is a good place to start.