Where to stay in Amsterdam
I was in Amsterdam last month for a couple of days to attend the Amsterdam Coffee Festival. It was a glorious late winter weekend with, surprisingly enough, plenty of sunshine, blue skies, and pleasantly cool temperatures. UPDATE: Read my 48-Hour Guide to Amsterdam (written for Man’s World Magazine) here. And then check out my fabulous luxury hotel experience in the heart of the city.
De L’Europe is one of the historical landmarks of Amsterdam. It is a part of the Leading Hotels of the World. Built as an inn in the 17th century, and then refurbished to a hotel in 1896, it still retains the genteel elegance of the era. The hotel is divided into two wings – the older, classical wing from 1896, and the Dutch Masters Wing added in 2010 by refurbishing the next-door bank. De L’Europe’s attractive location on a bend in the Amstel River makes it one of the best canal-side luxury hotels in the city.
De L’Europe is centrally located near the floating flower market (Bloemenmarkt) on Singel canal. Amsterdam’s Centraal Station is a 15-minute walk, and Schiphol Airport is about 20-30 minutes by car. If you prefer to use the public transport (as I do), there’s a bus & tram stop less than 5 minutes from the hotel. You can conveniently travel to almost any part of the city and visit all the main attractions and museums.
I recommend buying the ‘I Amsterdam Card’. This gives you free access to public transport, plus you get free or discounted entry to various museums and attractions. You can buy the card online in advance and then collect it at the train station or the airport.
De L’Europe still retains its historic grandeur and charm; the grand lobby lounge with elaborate chandeliers truly spells old-world luxury. Of course, beneath the old-world charm, De L’Europe is a thoroughly modern hotel with courteous and friendly service.
De L’Europe has a full-service spa with 4 treatment rooms, saunas, a Turkish steam bath, and a beauty salon. There’s also a gym and a pool with views of the Amstel River.
The hotel has 88 rooms and suites in the main building, and 23 modern design suites in the Dutch Masters Wing. Many of the rooms and suites look out over the canals or the city centre. I was upgraded to a Junior Suite on the 3rd floor of the hotel, complete with a small French balcony that gave a lovely view of the Amstel River below.
Loved the massive king size bed with a comfy Coco-mat mattress! The room also came with a large and spacious wardrobe, a work desk and chair, and a seating area with a coffee table and two sofa chairs. The huge, marble-clad bathroom had a window-side bathtub, separate shower area, and fab Blaise Mautin toiletries.
The walls of each room are adorned with copies of the Dutch Masters’ paintings. My room had a copy of The Feast of Saint Nicholas by Jan Steen (the original hangs in the Gallery of Honour at the Rijksmuseum), and the decor & colour scheme of my room reflected the Baroque style of the painting. Watch the video walk-through of the suite below.
Wi-Fi is free throughout the hotel and is quite fast.
De L’Europe has five dining spaces, the most prestigious of which is the two-Michelin restaurant Bord’Eau with an inventive, contemporary menu, and a good value set lunch offering.
My favourite was the canal-facing Hoofdstad Brasserie where they serve breakfast. The Promenade in the lobby is a great place to partake the hotel’s fabulous London Afternoon Tea. Hèt Terras, the canal-side terrace restaurant was closed in March when I visited; it is open from April to September and is the perfect place for a summer meal with a view. Don’t miss the signature Bloody Mary at Freddy’s Bar as the pianist serenades you.
So if Amsterdam is on your itinerary this summer, check out De L’Europe Amsterdam for a fabulous luxury stay. Perhaps the video below will help you make up your mind 😉