If you're looking at checking into the Flying Pig Downtown, you need to remember that it is a hostel and not a hotel. Providing you do that, you won't be disappointed at all. The hostel location is excellent, jammed into one of the main shopping areas of the Old Centre, just 5 minutes walk away from Centraal Station and Dam Square, and within comfortable walking distance of Rembrandtplein and the Red Light District. The only downside of this is that it has the potential to be quite noisy, but that will depend largely on where your room is and when you travel - I certainly did not consider it a problem during my stay.
Every member of staff that I spoke to was polite, friendly and very helpful, as well as answering questions about the city and touristy stuff. This included the facility for us to leave our bags in hostel lockers when we checked out, do some sight-seeing, and come back for a beer in the bar, despite no longer really being guests. The staff have a very relaxed and laid back attitude, which permeates the hostel atmosphere but does not stop them being helpful and hardworking..
The hostel has lockers, as previously mentioned, as well as offering a free breakfast service from 8:30-10:30. This is basically bread, a toaster and some cereal, but it's better than nothing. There is a smoking room and a small garden to enjoy the city's lax laws, which is particularly mellow and pleasant. The bar is a little pricey, but probably still better value than most of the bars in the Old Centre, and certainly cheaper than any club - it made for good pre-drinking before a night out. There's a pool table and a lot of comfortable seating, as well as a few bar snacks available. The bar decor is quirky but creates a cosy feel too.
I was in a 6 bed ensuite room, with 3 three bunk beds. The mattresses are made of plastic, which could probably be pretty uncomfortable, but I always went to bed exhausted after a day of sight-seeing so it didn't matter. The room is fairly clean, as is the bathroom. There are regularly cleaned public toilets/bathrooms in the corridors too, and storage chests underneath the beds which can be locked (but you need to provide your own lock).
Obviously, you won't be staying in total luxury, but it's good value and I would certainly stay again. It's marketed mainly towards young travelers and has DJ nights 3 times a week and lots of drinks offers, so I suppose if you don't fit this category, you might want to reassess your choices, but it definitely suited my friends and I.
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- Also Known As:
- Flying Pig Downtown Hotel Amsterdam