Contemporary 4-star hotels
Near Museumplein, the Hotel Vondel proposes modern rooms with a touch of industrial chic and a classy outdoor dining area. Rates start at €90, but for a real treat you can opt for an executive suite complete with its own Jacuzzi. Hire a bicycle or even a Vespa from the hotel to explore Amsterdam in style. At a slightly higher price (around €130), the Hotel Arena is a fashionable address with its own restaurant, bar and nightclub. Its 116 stylish rooms and suites are spacious, bright and airy with slick, understated design features. Located in the leafy Plantage neighbourhood within a former orphanage, the building’s historic architecture is another highlight.
Run by the same family since 1940, the Hotel Estheréa (from €140) is one of the capital’s most emblematic addresses. Now a fully modernised 4-star establishment, it has managed to conserve its authentic charm and continues to receive highly enthusiastic reviews. The refined, classic décor is particularly appreciated by mature couples looking for a peaceful, elegant retreat. Its location on the Singel canal means that guests benefit from a calm setting that remains very central. In the same category, the Grand Hotel Amrâth Amsterdam (Neogothic, Art-Deco splendour – from €144) and the Ambassade Hotel (classic luxury – from €122) are two other addresses that promise an unforgettable stay. For those with a smaller budget, there’s the Hotel de Filosoof (from €70), a 3-star hotel with a devoted following for its antique charm and its location in the upscale neighbourhood of Oud-Zuid, a stone’s throw from Rijksmuseum and the Van Gough museum. The décor is themed around famous philosophes, and it seems as though the Georges Bataille-inspired Passion room is a favourite among the romantics.
A floating love nest
Embark on a unique and truly romantic experience by booking a houseboat hotel. This kind of accommodation is in high demand, so you’ll need to reserve well in advance and a minimum stay usually applies. For a quaint, rustic experience, the Houseboat Under The Mill (from €115) offers homely caravan-style accommodation in a quaint location. The Houseboat in Jordaan area (from €125) is a simple, typical barge fitted with a wood-burning stove – perfect for a snug evening in. More modern, the Blue Houseboat (renovated in 2012), the Houseboat Ms 3 Gebroeders (in the Old Port overlooking the Nemo centre) and the Houseboat Ark van Amstel (in a quiet neighbourhood), all offer contemporary studio style units on barges and come highly recommend by couples on romantic breaks.
Cool urban retreats
Located towards Jordaan, on the fringe of the “Negen Straatjes” (“Nine Streets”) area with its arty boutiques and small bistros, the Miauw Suites (from €145) are a unique hospitality concept. This multifunctional, creative space combines offices, a concept store that acts as a gallery, a café and a fashion showroom, plus several cool, minimalist suites. In a similar style but with a lower price tag, La Remise B&B (from €105) offers guests the intimacy of a private home with the luxury of a contemporary hotel. A sober colour scheme of greys and beige contrasts with metallic features to give a chic urban feel to the rooms, and guests agree that the rates offer excellent value for money given the sophisticated style of the accommodation and its pleasant location.