Gone is the Amsterdam of day’s past, known solely for the infamous Red Light district and a weekend of debauchery. The past few years have given us a glimpse into a brand new Amsterdam, a city that has truly become a destination hotspot in Europe. Whether your interests lie in cycling through the streets and getting lost among the canals, undergoing some exciting new gastronomic experiences, or immersing yourself in all the cultural highlights, Amsterdam has something for everyone. This city has definitely become a destination worth visiting (or revisiting), and The Conservatorium, the only place to stay.
From the moment you step foot into the beautiful and awe inspiring lobby of the Conservatorium Amsterdam, it is impossible not to feel enamored. The Conservatorium boasts a rich history, originally built at the end of the 19th century as the Rijksportspaarbank, and has helped spark the regeneration of the Museum Quarter at the end of the 19th century. In 1978 it became the home of Amsterdam's Sweelinck Conservatory of Music, and then finally reopened as a hotel in 2011.
This property is ideally located in the heart of the city's museum square (Museumplein) and the royal Concertgebouw (Concert Hall). It is close to the fashion district, down the block from Vondelpark and steps away from cultural destinations such as the Rijksmuseum, Stedelijk Museum, and Van Gogh Museum. The tram is located directly across the street, making the quick trip to other areas in the city just as seamless.
The building was designed by renowned Dutch architect, Daniel Knuttel with interior and furniture designed by Milano designer, Piero Lissoni. What makes the hotel really stand out are the unique and playful touches that can be found throughout the hotel. There are a line of tree that separate the brasserie from the lounge, a suspended staircase that goes nowhere, a bright red hippo that lives opposite the reception, and probably the most photogenic (and Instagram worthy!) touch, a beautiful string of violins suspended from the ceiling. All these touches give the hotel a comfortable yet cool feel, while still maintaining a strong sense of place.
The hotel itself is comprised of 8 floors, and 129 guest rooms and suites ranging from spacious superior room to penthouse suite. All the rooms have luxury linens, high speed internet (that actually works everywhere), and private bars. The rooms all have brushed oak flooring and beige furniture combining styles that are both modern and classic. The bathrooms have rainfall showers, marble tubs, and LCD mirror televisions.
I had the pleasure of staying in the duplex suite last month, and thoroughly enjoyed the floor to ceiling windows, 2 spacious floors and 2 bathrooms! I was delighted with the mini bar selection, and loved that it was not your typical Pringles and M&M selection that you might find at a hotel chain.
I can't stress enough how warm and personable everyone at the Conservatorium is. From the doormen, to the housekeeping staff, front desk, to the waiters, I did not encounter one person that was less than amicable and helpful. Everyone is so welcoming, looking to enhance your stay in any way possible, and this is truly indicative of a well run and well managed hotel.
No quality hotel achieves this status without a strong food and beverage game, and The Conservatorium delivers with Taiko, the new Asian inspired hotspot by chef Schilo Van Coevorden. Their lounge/bar, Tunes Bar, another Amsterdam go to, is an elegant and cool spot to enjoy classic drinks, exclusive cocktails and tapas. I love the vibe in this bar and with a DJ spinning on the weekends; it seems to always be the place to be. Located in the spectacular atrium, is the Conservatorium Brassiere and Lounge with floor to ceiling windows and a glass ceiling. The breakfast I experienced here was top notch. A must try is the chocolate cups with apricot preserves. And for those late risers, I love that they serve breakfast until 11am! When I approached concierge for dining tips, I was impressed to be directed to their "dining specialist" who was extremely knowledgeable. He didn't recommend the touristy spots, but sent me to some amazing under the radar, local places, exactly what I was seeking.
The Conservatorium is also an excellent choice for meetings, events, even weddings. The shopping gallery includes a hair salon, high end luxury stores, and a cigar shop, La Casa del Habano, a dream for cigar aficionados. And no trip here is complete without a stop at their famous Akasha Holistic Wellbeing Centre and state of the art fitness center. There is a serene swimming pool located in the spa, as well as a whirlpool, hamman, sauna and Watsu pool and neon lit lap pool! Luxurious treatments such as hot seashell massage or jade tonifying facials are just another thing that sets this hotel one notch above.
If you are looking for a hotel that goes above and beyond, with amazing architecture and design, a welcoming and inviting staff, and the perfect location, you found the right place. Definitely crush-worth, the Conservatorium Amsterdam is the whole package.