Hotels are usually just nondescript places you sleep while travelling. All you expect is a quiet room, a comfy bed and hot water.
From the moment we got out of our cab the De Hallen was different. From the moment we woke up to the time we went to sleep, it reminded us we were in The Netherlands, a country known for its modern design aesthetic, and friendly, efficient people.
The building looks exactly like what it is, a converted tram shed.
The lobby area is bright and interesting. There is a lounge devoted to the colour red. There is a bar, a restaurant, and a lobby are with a long table and Dutch papers and magazines.
Our room was surprisingly quiet, as it despite being in the middle of the ground floor. The king-sized bed was very comfy, but the pillows are a bit too big. The very bright focused bedside lights were a treat. The huge, deep bath was very welcome after hours of sightseeing in the cold damp air. The shower was also large and efficient. (For American tourists who complain about the room size and plumbing in Europe's older hotels, this is the palace to stay). There was a high-end coffee maker and a large bar fridge in the room, which was convenient as we were not prepared to pay 20 euros for the hotel breakfast.
The location is a bit west of the main downtown tourist sites, in a genuine Dutch community. Ask which days there are open and indoor markets in the area, and check them out. Its about 16 euros by cab to the station or main tourist sites, or about a 20 - 30 minute walk on quiet, interesting streets. There are tram routes nearby and they front desk sells an all day pass for 7:50 euros. They also rent bicycles for about 17 euros.
The staff seemed delighted to be able to help in any way they could, and, of course, they all spoke excellent English.
The price was very reasonable.
The De Hallen sets the standard for what a modern hotel should be. We do not expect to find anywhere better in a long time.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Hotel De Hallen is situated in one of Amsterdam's finest industrial heritage sites. The blue steel and rusty highlights of the grand building become an inspiration to each and every one of our guests. Imagine spacious surroundings with an abundance of plants, brought to perfection with modern furniture and design and decorated with a selection of contemporary art, handpicked by the owner. The modern facilities and quality of service are outstanding. Dishes from the cuisine are served not only in the bar, restaurant, lobby and pavement cafe, but also in our meeting room in boardroom setup. The fashion and museum districts, Amsterdam's breathtaking canals and the Jordaan district are all within walking distance. We look forward to seeing you soon in Hotel De Hallen. ... more less
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