I stayed for 3 nights between 1st and 4th Jan 2004. The hotel has a good location - about 10 mins walk from the centre in a pleasant leafy suburb. It has an impressive exterior and is in the Best Western chain - which I previously thought guaranteed a high standard. When you walk in, the smell of cannabis should set the alarm bells ringing - this smell permeates the whole hotel. The rooms are quite small but tolerable. The real problem in this hotel is the other guests. In three nights I got almost no sleep - the first night it was the 4 teenagers in the rooms opposite having a party. The second and third nights it was doors slamming every 20 minutes all night long and people shouting all night. Amsterdam is a beautiful city, but the Dutch have taken the decision to tolerate soft drugs. The result is that it attracts the dregs of Europe. I highly recommend a short stay in Amsterdam but try to avoid the druggies and the riff raff, in other words don't stay at this hotel.
The Hotel Inntel Amsterdam-Centre is located in a modern soulless building on a quiet pedestrian street in the centre of Amsterdam. It is about five minutes walk from the main station and only seconds from the busy Nieuwendijk and Damrak shopping streets. The Inntel was part of the former Golden Tulip hotel group - the Golden Tulip neon sign is still on the outside of the hotel but only the Intell Amsterdam-Centre part is lit at night. The personnel seem to have been trained to the former luxury hotel group's standard and were both very friendly and efficient. The rooms are fairly spacious for a central Amsterdam hotel with sufficient space for luggage. The closet space is rather limited and the management clearly expect most guests to live out of the suitcase. All furnishings were in good condition with mattresses comfortably firm. Rooms have in-room safes, lockable minibars and kettles with an adequate supply of instant coffee and tea. Non-smoking rooms are available. The cable TV included programs from neighbouring countries including several BBC and German channels. Pay-per-view programs are also available. The room was quiet despite the proximity of the busy Nieuwzijdse Voorburgwal street, which has a convenient tramway stop almost directly in front of the hotel. Both the sleeping area and the all white bathroom were spotlessly cleaned throughout our stay. The room had a smallish bath with a build in shower. The white towels were rather thin and small and limited to one per person. There were also no face cloths or hand towels ? things I would have expected in a four star establishment. Magnetic strip key cards are needed to use the elevator from the ground floor and should also be inserted into the holder in the bedroom to connect the power supply. Each room has an individual air conditioning unit with several settings but the only way to switch it off completely is to pull the key card out of its slot. (I did confirm th
is with the front desk!) Flashlights are not supplied to help you find the card slot should you need it in the dark. The Inntel is a comfortable hotel but it is modern and totally devoid of any soul or character. Although rated four star I would compare it more favourably to three star establishments. At the usual discount rate around Euro 140 it is probably fair value given the location, cleanliness and general comfort level. However, we paid only Euro 70 per night for a double room, which is excellent value for money. The special rate is only available for bookings on the Inntel website (www.inntel.nl) and is subject to surprisingly few restrictions. At Euro 70 the Inntel would definitely be my first choice in future but at Euro 140 or more I would also consider some alternatives with more character. Hotel Inntel Amsterdam-Centre Nieuwezijdskolk 19, 1012 PV Amsterdam Tel.: 020-530 18 18 Fax: 020-422 19 19 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
I have been to Amsterdam several times over the past few years, and I always encounter the same problem - not being able to get into a decent hotel. It always pays to plan ahead when booking a weekend in this beautiful city, and I would advise reserving a room at least three months in advance. It is also important to bear in mind that Amsterdam is frequently the host of conventions and conferences, so if you're planning a holiday, I'd check in advance that your chosen dates do not clash, or you will find that the whole city has been booked out for a very long time! If you do plan ahead well enough, there are some excellent hotels I can recommend. If you're on a budget, you can't beat the Winston Hotel for value, location and quirkiness. Based in the centre of the old town, each of the basic but clean rooms is decorated by a local artist in an individual style and usually to a theme (eg the Heineken room represents the inside of a beer bottle!). The hotel has a good website at www.winston.nl. If you want to go up a notch in comfort, I would recommend the Wiechmann Hotel. This is a traditional Amsterdam hotel with lots of antiques, friendly management and a great location on one of the best canals. www.hotelwiechmann.nl. For general information and reviews on various places to stay, and a selection of top bars and restaurants, check out www.amsterdamhotspots.nl - it's a really helpful website. Amsterdam is a wonderful city, with something for everyone, and there are some great places to stay...but securing a room in one is often problematic!