The CitizenM really cannot be compared to any other hotel, as it is a concept that not only tries something new, but succeeds at providing an experience that is both fun, comfortable, and a wonderful value. I would undoubtedly recommend this property to anyone visiting Amsterdam, as it is great for solo travelers, couples, and business travelers.
I arrived in Amsterdam via train from Paris, and took the metro from Centraal Station to the Station Zuid. The Station Zuid is located next to the Amsterdam World Trade Center, which is literally about a 2 minute walk to the CitizenM. Directions were clearly provided on my confirmation e-mail when I booked my room online, so the walk to the property was an absolute breeze. Check-in was performed via one of the several kiosks in the lobby, though one or two employees were always around to help in case you had any questions. The process was fairly straightforward; you enter your credit card, or confirmation number, or name, and the system looks you up. As I had already booked via the CitizenM website, there was no problem finding my reservation, and the system asked me to create a password that would be needed to access the hotel's free wifi. After a simple insertion of the credit card to cover the charges, the system asked me to pick up a blank room key from a stack on the table, and simply hold it against the kiosk. My key was now programmed for my room, and could be used to purchase food or items in the lobby as well.
My room was located on the second floor, and was only a few steps from the elevator. Unlike most hotels, you do not have to insert the key into the door to gain entry, but rather just hold it against the lock, and it unlocks. Very cool; this even works if the key is in your wallet. Just hold the wallet against the door, and viola, it unlocks.
The room was very unique, but very functional and fun. I would describe the room in a rectangular shape, as it is longer than it is wide. As you walk in, there are some coat hangers to your left, as well as an in-wall safe. Ahead of that is a large "tube" (a glass cylinder, maybe 4 feet in diameter), which contained the toilet. Across from this was another large tube, same size, which was the shower. A little further forward was a rotating mirror with some shelves, outlets (European and American plugs), and next to that a large sink and shelf for toiletries. The rest of the room is taken up by the bed, which is HUGE. It is large enough to probably fit four people comfortably, and is designed in such a way that you can sleep in a variety of different positions and still get a great night's sleep. Essentially, there is no head and foot of the bed. It's all just one big, comfortable space. The other neat thing about the room is that everything is controlled by remote. The "Moodpad," as it's called, can control the lights, temperature, and drapery. It is very convenient, and provides some nice options for having the lighting adjust to whatever you are doing (if you are reading a book, you can hit the icon for that on the remote, and the lights adjust to the ideal conditions for that). The remote, naturally, controls the television as well, which has an incredible number of channels, entertainment options, and games to choose from. My only problem with the remote was that it tended to "lose connection" from the room (it would sometimes flash "CONNECTING TO ROOM 123"), though it always found the connection quickly afterwards. Not sure why this was the case, but other than that, it worked perfectly. Two manual switches were provided on the wall for turning the lighting up/down, and bringing the drapery up/down, just in case the remote wasn't nearby.
Outside of the room, I found the common areas of the hotel to be very fun and functional. The lobby provided several iMac computers (and a printer) to work on, and the CanteenM (the hotel's name for it's self-serve restaurant) was a fun place to grab a snack or meal at any hour. You simply choose from the large selection of items, and an employee is always around to ring up your purchase (you can even hold your room key against a special pad and it charges directly to your room). The food was quite delicious and very reasonably priced; a great option if you're not in the mood to leave the hotel.
Throughout the lobby are various televisions, couches, love-seats, books, artwork, and tables for doing work or just hanging out. There is a great little kids are, too, with crayons and toys to play with. The lobby is a nice relaxation spot if you're looking to spend some time out of the room while staying at the hotel. I do have to mention that the staff at the CitizenM could not have been nicer. There seemed to be around 5-6 employees on duty in the lobby at any given time, so finding someone to help you check-in, grab food, or use any of the facilities was never a problem. The staff were incredibly kind, helpful, and fun to talk to, and all seemed very passionate about the CitizenM concept. Even though the hotel was a great value, had fun, functional, and unique rooms, I would return just for the fact that I felt like a welcomed guest, and was treated more like a friend than a customer. Solo traveling can be lonely, and having a staff that engages with the customer and enjoys conversing makes a property stand out. Without a doubt, CitizenM provides that.
The location of this hotel, in my opinion, is wonderful. It is located right near the World Trade Center, which is convenient if you are here to do business, or need to take the metro anywhere in the city. There is a tram stop directly outside of the hotel, and the number 5 tram can take you into the more "touristy" parts of Amsterdam within about 20 minutes. It is a safe, simple ride, and the tram runs up until around midnight. The area where CitizenM resides is fairly residential, thus you won't see many restaurants or shops near the hotel, but you will feel very safe. I personally enjoyed coming back to this area after a night out in Amsterdam, as the tram stop is just steps away from the hotel, yet there are families and couples out for an evening walk, cycle, or walking a pet as you come back in the evening. Just a nice feeling to show how great of a town Amsterdam is.
For those familiar with it, CitizenM reminds me of the aLoft hotel concept that is scattered throughout the United States. The aLoft, too, provides fun common areas, easy to access foods at all hours, and comfortable rooms that are functional for the modern day traveler. I greatly prefer the CitizenM, however, as their staff are top-notch and always around to have a conversation, help you with directions, or take care of whatever request you may have. I could see CitizenM doing well in the States, and hope to see it there soon. However, the best thing I can compare it to is the aLoft, as it is a concept that provides a safe, fun, functional stay for a great value.
On your next trip to Amsterdam, I strongly recommend this property. I do not think you will be disappointed.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Located in Central Amsterdam on Beethovenstraat this hip Netherlands hotel offers affordable luxury for budget travelers, lodging near museums, free Wi-Fi, movies on demand, and 24/7 on-site dining. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
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- Also Known As:
- Citizenm Amsterdam City Hotel Amsterdam
- Citizenm Hotel Amsterdam