Yet only a few minutes away from the mall, the appeal of this ancient city becomes apparent.
Utrecht is a city of 170 nationalities and almost 328 000 people.
There are dozens of websites offering advice and information for expats and international workers in the Netherlands.
Here is an easy-to-use overview of the main sites, including information for international students, French, Italian and Polish expats.
The Expats in Utrecht website lists local information sources, social clubs, blogs and service providers to help you make the most of your stay.
Lying in the centre of the Netherlands, in the province of the same name, Utrecht has a beautiful city centre with cobbled streets, old bridges, café terraces on sunken canals, and a sky-line dominated by a tower from a medieval Cathedral. The first impressions of Utrecht for visitors arriving by train are generally disappointing.
Utrecht is the country’s main hub for public transport – and unlike other cities, the station is attached to a mega shopping mall devoid of charm.
a good looking Dutch girl will not go out with anybody who she considers below her looks-wise," says one correspondent. Dutch women here are rude, arrogant and unfriendly.
They do not wish to communicate with people outside their own circle of friends.